’Pope’ of French cuisine Paul Bocuse dies age 91

In this file photo, French chef Paul Bocuse tastes a dish during the “Bocuse d’Or” (Golden Bocuse) trophy, at the 14th World Cuisine contest, in Lyon, central France on Jan. 29 2013. (AP)
Updated 20 January 2018
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’Pope’ of French cuisine Paul Bocuse dies age 91

PARIS: Paul Bocuse, one of the greatest French chefs of all time, has died aged 91, the country’s interior minister said on Saturday.
Dubbed the “pope” of French cuisine, Bocuse helped shake up the food world in the 1970s with the Nouvelle Cuisine revolution and created the idea of the celebrity chef.
“Monsieur Paul was France. The pope of gourmets has left us,” tweeted Interior Minister Gerard Collomb, announcing the chef’s death after a long battle with Parkinson’s disease.
“He was one of the greatest figures of French gastronomy, the General Charles de Gaulle of cuisine,” said French food critic Francois Simon, comparing him to France’s wartime savior and dominant postwar leader.
A giant in a nation that prides itself as the beating heart of gastronomy, Bocuse was France’s only chef to keep the Michelin food bible’s coveted three-star rating through more than four decades.
The heart of his empire, L’Auberge de Collonges au Mont D’Or, his father’s village inn near Lyon in food-obsessed southeastern France, earned three stars in 1965, and never lost a single one.
“Monsieur Paul,” as he was known, was named “chef of the century” by Michelin’s rival guide, the Gault-Millau in 1989, and again by The Culinary Institute of America in 2011.”
Born in 1926 to a family of cooks since 1765, Bocuse began his apprenticeship at the age of 16 and came to epitomise a certain type of French epicurean — a lover of fine wine, food and women.
A great upholder of tradition as well as an innovator, several of his trademark dishes at the Auberge remained unchanged for decades, such as the bass in a pastry crust or the black truffle soup he created for French president Valery Giscard d’Estaing in 1975, who named him a commander in the Legion of Honour.
He slept in the same room where he was born, and managed to maintain a relationship with his wife Raymonde and at least two lovers.
“I love women and we live too long these days to spend one’s entire life with just one,” Bocuse told the Daily Telegraph in 2005.
Together with the Gault-Millau guide, Bocuse became a driving force behind the Nouvelle Cuisine, sweeping away the rich and heavy sauces of yesteryear in favor of super-fresh ingredients and sleek aesthetics.
Bocuse reportedly claimed the term was invented by Gault-Millau to describe food he helped prepare for the maiden flight of the Concorde airliner in 1969.
Slashing cooking times, paring down menus and paying new attention to health, Nouvelle Cuisine was a craze that fizzled out but left a lasting legacy.
“It was a real revolution,” said Simon. “They coined a concept that came at exactly the right moment — at a time when gastronomy was a bit dull and heavy, with thick sauces, not sexy at all.”
In 2007, more than 80 top chefs flew to France from around the world to celebrate his 81st birthday and his legacy.


Prince Harry goes solo on royal tour as pregnant Meghan rests

Updated 35 min 20 sec ago
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Prince Harry goes solo on royal tour as pregnant Meghan rests

  • The pair have already traveled to Sydney, Melbourne and the regional town of Dubbo since touching down in Australia last Monday
  • They are set to visit Fiji and Tonga after Fraser Island

FRASER ISLAND, Australia: Prince Harry greeted an Aboriginal community on the stunning World Heritage-listed Fraser Island Monday as his pregnant wife Meghan took a break from official duties during the royal couple’s Australian tour.
The pair have already traveled to Sydney, Melbourne and the regional town of Dubbo since touching down in Australia last Monday, drawing thousands of screaming fans to their events.
The visit to Fraser Island off the coast of Queensland state took on a different tone, as the Duke of Sussex was greeted with a traditional Aboriginal ceremony from the local Butchulla people on the peaceful shores of Lake McKenzie.
Harry later walked barefoot on the soft white sands of the lake, a source of drinking water for the Butchulla people, and splashed water on his face.
Fraser is the world’s largest sand island and the prince was due to unveil a plaque to dedicate the holiday site’s acres of rainforests to the Queen’s Commonwealth Canopy project.
His visit will also touch on other environmental issues, a cause close to his father Prince Charles’ heart, when he meets with park rangers to learn more about the island’s plants and animals.
Later, he will meet with two Hervey Bay paramedics, who are being recognized for granting a dying woman’s final wish by taking her to the beach.
A photo of a paramedic beside a stretcher facing the ocean was posted on Facebook last year and went viral around the world.
The royal couple had earlier arrived in Queensland by plane before traveling to the island separately.
Harry boarded a barge, a route used by tourists to travel to the island, while the Duchess of Sussex took a different vessel and then retreated to a private residence.
Her choice of dress, a maroon number with white polka dots, sparked excitement in Queensland, as the deep brownish-red happens to also been the official color of the state.
The pair are due to visit Fiji and Tonga after Fraser Island.