Thursday, November 01, 2012

Charles Proust Concours 2012

 Yesterday at Salon du Chocolat you could have tasted desserts from future top future pastry chefs of the world.
 Desserts that are part of this splendid piece de monte hand-made of chocolate and sugar.
Yesterday's big event at the Salon du Chocolat (and for 17 contestents the grand finale of a year of creation) - the 4th Charles Proust Concours took place. Charles Proust, by the way, was president for 30 years of France's first association of patissiers started in 1871.

 Supported by Grand Marnier and Relais Dessert. I posted on this top organization of French pastry chefs, Relais Desserts here.
 The contest was headed by Pierre Herme with a theme from the Fables of Jean de La Fontaine An artistic jury looked for compliance with the theme, balance of materials, technique and harmony of colors and shapes. While the tasting jury evaluates texturesaccuracy in tastes and consistency with the theme.
 Here's L. confering with Pierre Herme front row and center on the Charles Proust jury. They tasted and judged 17 (!!!) different desserts.
 Back stage the real drama was taking place. Last minute adjustments over a chocolat-mandarin orange tower.
 Seen in this contestent's piece de monte.
 You could feel the tension.
 Better than any boardwalk beauty contest.
 A prestigious team of M.O.F.s (Meilleur Ouvriers De France) (affectionately referred to as 'mofs') were backstage to assist and advise contestents and to test taste. The Charles Poust Concours is one of many reknown French contests (Coupe du Monde du la Patisserie Lyon, Olympiades des Metiers, Barry Caillebaut World Chocolate Masters, Le Mondial des Arts Sucres,silver dessert award, Junior French Dessert Championship) open to aspiring patissiers.
 M.O.F. patissier Nicolas Bernardé and Grand Marnier ambassador confers here. Remember the movie, Kings of Pastry recounting chef Jacquy Pfeiffer's adventures in the fierce 3-day competition to become one of France's top pastry chefs? All these chefs sporting the red-white-blue collar band won that battle to the finish line.
 Later in the afternoon the jury decided.
 Twenty-one year old Paul Klein of Patisserie Chantal Klein, Belfort took first place and won this silver macaron stack trophy.
 Paul Klein's piece de monte exquisitely tells the story of the hare and the tortoise.

 If I'd taken out my iPod Touch I could have identified all the star chefs present. Relais Desserts has a fun free app naming names and addresses of the top world-wide pastry chefs in their organizations + recipes.  I was too busy shooting to taste the desserts so I stopped by Grand Marnier at the Salon for a freshly made crepe with cherry jam and a splash of cherry brandy.


  1. How fantastic to see all those wonderful desserts & you only got to eat a crepe ! 'mais quand meme crepe au Grande Marnier'

  2. How exciting!
    We are lucky to have our girl reporter on the spot at the Salon. You never miss a trick!

  3. I was looking at your first november post
    And just wanted to say isnt it amazing how pastry can be such an incredible judging competition!
    I love the attention to detail here.

  4. This tasting is such a great memory ...

  5. What fancy heights these creations reach!

    I do remember that film, and am sure there has been plenty of tension in the air at this week's competition, too.


  6. How do I get me a job as a dessert taster?

    1. 1st-take lecons at Raids-Patisserie

      2nd- Read THE FLAVOR THESAURUS so you can sound like you know what you're talking about even if you don't...

  7. Carol, tell me how you have such terrific access to these events!

    1. Hahahaha
      It's called MOXIE
      I just walzed in behind the curtain and bla bla bla'd my credentials.
      Thanks to Parisbreakfast 5,000+ readers I get entre to many wonderful things
      MERCI Beaucoup!

    2. Wow, 5000+! It appears I have a new goal...:)

  8. wow
    thank you very much Carol !

  9. Mmmmm...the cherry crepe sounds divine--I make crepes, and I'll have to try that. Fun, Carol.

  10. I get teh hare and tortoise in the 2nd photo. In fact the artist shows a keen grasp of the usually hidden character of the rabbit. However, Paul Klein's piece looks more like the hare and the...jayhawk? Crow? What IS that big-beraked thing?

    1. Caught out as always by sharp-eyes Mistress Jeanette.
      There are actually TWO Fontaine stories going on here.
      The 2nd one is the corbeau and the renard.

  11. I love those shiny chocolate eggs - I think I could handle a few of those!
    I'd love to go to that some day...

  12. We saw that movie:-) more a documentary would you say?We enjoyed it..and I am envious of you:-)
    Lovely always:-) Jacques loved Les Fables..while in Italy..a..lovely waiter..romanced us with words from one fable:-)

  13. I loved that film! Lovely way to start my Friday...thank you Carol. Always learn from you!

  14. Better than any boardwalk beauty contest, too funny! I never imagined that this monde de chocolat was so complex & sophisticated...

  15. How on earth do they stay so skinny?

  16. youlia2:44 PM

    Thank you so much for this great story of Concourse Charles Proust and Relais Desserts' association.

    I hope you enjoyed this "sweet" moment in Paris,


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