Wednesday, March 5, 2008

Our cultural heritage...

Continuing our mini-theme of food, perhaps French cuisine is so exceptional that many might make the move here almost solely for the fine cooking - in fact, it seems quite certain that many have done so. For the French themselves, well they are known for preferring to take holidays within France and I have heard much speculation that this is largely because they prefer their own food! Well, our theme is rather well-timed in coinciding with a bold move by the head of state, President Sarkozy, who has it seems proposed that UNESCO should add French gastronomy itself to the world heritage cultural list!

Naturally this has created some controversy. Is this a case of a country's high self-esteem or simply perhaps a deeply patriotic gesture? The more cynical might suggest a calculated move in the face of less that ideal ratings in the polls. Or could it be entirely motivated by tourism in what is still the most visited country in the world? Well, perhaps there is a mixture of motives, but another argument says that while it helps to focus the spotlight on the importance of a national cuisine, and high gastronomic standards, it may well help to stave off the fast-globalising fast-food culture.

In any event, whether this is successful or not, it will do no harm in raising the profile of French cuisine even further and that is sure to help to attract visitors.
For the more focussed visitors, particularly potential expats, I would still recommend researching what food is not commonly available as much as the delights that are on offer. Many Brits ensconced in France still import their 'favourites from home', such as Branston Pickle, PG Tips tea, Heinz Baked Beans, to name just a few. Now where's the Marmite...

Photo: Alyson Muse

1 comment:

Stanley said...

Hmmm...the food looks really...urm...healthy :)