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Chef’s Philosophy

My philosophy is simple. It is simply about quality. I believe that with just a few small changes in the way you shop each day you can have a huge impact on the final taste of each meal. My first principle is to choose and prepare recipes based on ingredients that are in season. Seasonal produce is always fresher and tastier, and that quality comes through in the flavour of the dish.

Secondly it is vital to use top quality ingredients at all times. Organic fruits and vegetables whenever possible, and always using fleur de sel from Guerande or Camargue for seasoning, are just two examples.

How can you ensure that you are buying quality? Look for products that are labelled with the symbol AOC – Appelation d’Origine Contrôlée, meaning Controlled Designation of Origin. These products come from producers with long years of experience who have been certified to care for the highest level of quality which results in the exceptional flavour of their products. The AOC mark applies to foods like honey, lentils and cheese.

Its origins date back to the 15th  century when Roquefort cheese was protected by a parliamentary decree, and after the beginning of the 20th century, many new laws were put into place guaranteeing food production. In 1925 it was Roquefort that became the first cheese to be awarded an AOC label.

The AOC designation also applies to wine. Today there are over 300 French wines of Appellation d’Origine Contrôlée. Other quality marks worth looking for are poultry from Bresse as well as agneau de pré-salé (meadow lamb) from Mont Saint-Michel in Normandy.

And finally look for regional products that have been selected to bear the distinctive French symbol Label Rouge (The Red Label). This is another mark of quality that has just celebrated its 50th anniversary of guaranteeing high quality products for consumers. It can be found on seafood, flour, bread, meat, charcuterie, eggs, poultry and more.

If you take these lessons to heart, as I do, even though it may cost a little more, or take a little more time and effort to do your shopping, the end result will be meals that are more delicious, better quality, and bring great joy to your friends, family and guests.

Chef Ted

Tadeusz Kolodziejczyk

P.S. Some of my favourite restaurants try to while you are in Paris: Yam’Tcha, Laserre, Les Cocottes, La Cuisine, and Joel Robuchon.