The Michelin Guide team will invite chefs, pastry chefs and other professionals who represent the culinary arts of France and who maintain France’s position as a destination for gastronomy to the event. In choosing to launch the 2021 edition in Cognac, the Michelin Guide will honor the richness of the region, offer guests a taste of Charentais hospitality and introduce the people who produce the region’s many offerings. In addition to the ceremony celebrating the new starred establishments selected by the Michelin inspectors, this getaway in Nouvelle Aquitaine in the middle of the distillation period will be an opportunity to learn about developments of Cognac, one of the world’s flagship spirits. Under the leadership of the Bureau National Interprofessionnel du Cognac (BNIC), the sector is making sustainable viticulture a collective and irreversible practice and developing more sustainable production and consumption methods.
For 120 years, Michelin Guide inspectors have scoured the regions of France in search of the best restaurants and culinary talents. Since 2013, the Michelin Guide has organized a ceremony celebrating the great establishments, young chefs and others who have chosen to pursue these challenging professions. On January 18, the Michelin Guide team and guests will gather in Cognac to celebrate a region with a particularly rich gastronomic heritage (truffle cultivation, cheese making, oyster farming, fish farming, etc.) and several wine appellations that share the same vineyard as Cognac, such as Pineau des Charentes and Charentais wines. In a region with such generous bounty, the honor paid by the Michelin Guide to the various culinary trades, especially that of sommelier, demonstrates its full meaning.
According to Gwendal Poullennec, international director of the Michelin Guides, “Each year, the Michelin Guide promotes the gastronomy of all regions of France through its restaurant selections. The French Guide 2020 counts 465 restaurants in Paris proper and 2,970 restaurants in the provinces. Moving our star ceremony from Paris to Cognac is further proof of the Guide’s commitment to terroirs, local producers and the quality food chain. The role of the Michelin Guide is to bring together the talents who work in the kitchen with the greatest number of gourmets. We also want to highlight the artisans and their region, an inexhaustible source of inspiration for Chefs who base their cuisine in their immediate environment and its seasons. “
Jean-Hubert Lelievre, spokesperson for the Cognac Host Region Project 2021, is delighted. “Inspired by the prestige of the Michelin Guide, we are mobilizing all the energy of Cognac and the Charentes region to highlight the richness and the variety of our gastronomy and our beautiful region with the greatest chefs of France. Our success is due to the contribution of local players, proud of their terroir, who will enthusiastically and sincerely welcome this annual international gastronomic event to Cognac. This move to a location outside of Paris (a first since the creation of the Guide) is the result of the marriage of two world-class benchmarks of French excellence and know-how: Michelin and Cognac. Our entire Cognac ecosystem is preparing for this great event and all the players will be there in 2021! “