Top 10 French Culinary Highlights with Gabriel Gaté

Gabriel Gaté provides a few of his culinary favourites for you to taste on your next trip to France.

France’s rich culinary heritage boasts foods, which span the full spectrum, from the humble onion soup to the elegant foie gras. Here are the top ten culinary favorites of celebrity chef and cookbook author Gabriel Gaté.

1. A delightful seafood platter

The seafood platter is one dish the Chef truly enjoys. Served cold over ice, you'll find it in every seafood restaurant along the coast, as well as brasseries in Paris.

Customise your platter from the menu's choice of freshly opened oysters, scampi, prawns, crabs, sea snails, lobsters, mussels and more, served with rye bread, French butter, mayonnaise and a special shallot and red wine vinegar dressing.

A glass of champagne completes the pleasure.

2. A customary cheese tray

The French love their cheese.

In better French restaurants, an elaborate platter with sometimes more than twenty different, perfectly matured cheeses is presented.

In France, cheese here is traditionally served with bread and is heaven with a glass of red Bordeaux or Burgundy.

3. Classic charcuterie

On a visit to a beautiful French village, the charcuterie shop is Chef Gabriel Gaté’s favourite take-away store, offering unique, regional, home-made small goods like terrines, pâtés, myriad of ham and salami, and prepared salads.

4. Fine French wine

French wines are excellent value by the glass in family restaurants and wine bars. French labels can be confusing, so if you want a Chardonnay to take home with you as a souvenir, buy a white burgundy.

For a Sauvignon Blanc, choose a wine from the Loire Valley; Alsace is the region that makes superb Riesling; for a Shiraz, look to the Côte du Rhône region; for a Cabernet Sauvignon, try a Bordeaux; and Burgundy makes for great Pinot Noir. 

5. From the boulangerie

When exploring French cuisine, it is absolutely essential that you take the time to discover the sublime taste of a freshly baked croissant or baguette with French butter. 

6. Delicious French desserts

French desserts are always magical.

French chefs make great use of fresh fruits, but Chef Gaté prefers one with liqueur, such as Grand Marnier, Cointreau or Green Chartreuse.

7. Exquisite game food

Some foods are seasonal, and in autumn the Chef makes it a point to never go past a regional speciality of game food, like hare or pheasant served with wild mushrooms, and preferably crèpes.

8. Sweet, crumbly pastry

The French art of making cakes never ceases to evolve and the Chef suggests you try a classic like a mille-feuille, an éclair or a stunning modern creation with exotic flavours at a pâtisserie.

9. Flavourful sauces

One of the highlights of a gourmet French dish is the sauce. With a fish dish, try the delicious beurre blanc sauce made with shallots, white wine, vinegar and butter, or a hollandaise sauce.

With meat, try a béarnaise sauce, pepper sauce or red wine sauce.

10. Fine regional delicacies

Among the regional delicacies, try the cassoulet of the south-west region, a dish of baked beans with duck and selected pork cuts. In Marseille and Provence the bouillabaisse is a must, and in the Alps, enjoy a glorious cheese fondu. In Alsace, you have to try a choûcroute, in Lorraine, a quiche, and in Burgundy, a coq au vin.

The list is endless and it is best for you to discover for yourself.

The Tastes of France with Scenic

The richness of French gastronomy is second to none, thanks to the country’s mild temperate climate and fertile soil. Each region boasts wonderful specialties and outstanding dishes along with great wines and cheeses. Oui, oui! France is simply unique. 
As an exciting new addition to our 2021 itineraries, Scenic has introduced two new Culinary Cruises, handcrafted to delight the foodie in you. Immerse yourself into the culinary traditions of France through the 11 Day Tastes of Southern France or Flavours of Bordeaux itineraries. Learn how to capture the best food photos from an expert, indulge in blind tasting of fine wines, go truffle hunting with a farmer and his specially trained dogs, sample premium French chocolates, and enjoy a delicious Bresse chicken meal prepared on board by Michelin star Chef Didier Goiffon. 
These new culinary cruises are a wonderful way to experience the gourmet delights of France. Our Scenic Space-Ships in the South of France and Bordeaux regions also feature an on board cooking school, Scenic Culinaire, so you can learn the art of French cooking while cruising past the spectacular scenery.

Bresse Region with Gabriel Gaté

Cité du Chocolat with Gabriel Gaté