France awards Swiss chef honorary doctorate

France awards Swiss chef honorary doctorate
Rochat's L'Hôtel de Ville restaurant in Crissier. Photo:
Swiss chef Philippe Rochat is one of four renowned European chefs who will receive honorary doctorates for the first time in France, organizers said on Friday.

Rochat, Spaniard Martin Berasategui, Japan's Kiyomi Mikuni and Belgian Pierre Wynants were chosen by a panel of 45 professionals, including culinary heavyweights such as Alain Ducasse, Joel Robuchon and Guy Savoy.

The degrees, which are reserved for foreign nationals, will be conferred by the University of Tours on November 7th in the presence of French Agriculture Minister Stephane Le Foll.

Rochat, 59, owns the Restaurant de l'Hôtel de Ville in Crissier, a village in the canton of Vaud, and is a culinary consultant.

The celebrated if pricey restaurant has been awarded three stars in the Michelin Guide.

“No French university has until now given honoris causa doctorates to master chefs,” said Francis Chevrier, the head of the European Institute of the History and Culture of Food which was behind the initiative.

“There is no university degree in the field of gastronomic sciences in France,” Chevrier told AFP.

“The Italians on the other hand have created a university for gastronomic sciences,” he said.

“These honours will help shake up things.”

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