The first evening of an event that sold out in a just a few hours: we’re in a large, low-ceilinged garage decorated in a vaguely Gothic manner. It is the setting of Le Fooding Paris 2013 sponsored by S.Pellegrino, two large rectangular tables, for a total seating capacity of 50, dominate the space. A long line of yellow candles runs down the tables, creamy white blankets are placed at each seat. The first of Camille Fourmont’s dishes arrives: little balls of mozzarella cheese in a sumptuous cream sauce with a hint of vanilla, whose richness is counterbalanced with a bit of green pepper. Nearby, members of the “clan des Madones” are slicing and tasting, passing plates and exchanging complicit glances.
It could be the lighting, but, they all seem even younger than they are – these young women intent on sharing and serving emotions. This is their party. Alix Lacloche isn’t at all taken aback by the idea of cooking in a garage: he’s the resident chef and his dish is as fresh as a Spring day, yet as complex as a puzzle. Raw beets are served sliced, alongside ricotta cheese, and the pairing is a great mix of flavors, textures and colors. It’s a dish that manages to represent the chef’s personal style of cooking, “simple, hearty and inspired”.
A slice of lightly seared tuna melts in the mouth, softened by a buttery polenta which is drizzled in a citrus sauce: the contribution of chef Alice di Cagno is the strongest dish of the evening. It’s no longer cold in the garage, thanks to the sommelier Laura Vidal and the wine she serves from the Vouvray region. Anna and Alice from Le Bal café have created a small masterpiece from chocolate ganache. Their dessert demonstrates how important contrasting flavors are when it comes to sweets – in this case, it’s a touch of Maldon salt that really sets off the flavor.
Some lucky attendees were privy to a special afternoon snack of spaghetti with tomato sauce cooked by the Italian film star Pierfrancesco Favino. He gave away the secret ingredient chef Davide Oldani taught him: together with the basil, he adds a bit of julienned mint to the sauce – topping it off with a few swirls of Tuscan olive oil. Here is the video of the actor in cooking action: