Gabriel Le Quang, a 33-year-old pastry sous-chef at the esteemed Hotel du Cap-Eden-Roc, has achieved the prestigious title of “Meilleur Ouvrier de France Pâtissier-Confiseur” (Best Craftsman of France in Pastry and Confectionery).
This highly acclaimed award will be bestowed upon him in June at an official ceremony held at the Sorbonne, where the Minister of National Education and Youth, Pap Ndiaye, will present it to him.
Le Quang, along with other winners of this 27th edition, will then graduate and be honored with the title of “Un des Meilleurs Ouvriers de France” (One of the Best Craftsmen of France) during the graduation and prize-giving ceremony. The culminating event will take place at the Elysée Palace, where they will have the privilege of listening to a speech by President Emmanuel Macron in their honor.
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The “Meilleur Ouvrier de France” (MOF) title is a coveted recognition approved by the Ministry of National Education and Youth and awarded exclusively in France through a competition among professionals. Established in 1929, the “Société Nationale des Meilleurs Ouvriers de France” is a non-profit association of public interest since 1952, boasting over 1,500 members who hold the prestigious title of “Meilleur Ouvrier de France”.
The competition, organized by the “Comité d’Organisation des Expositions du Travail” (COET) every three or four years, is recognized as a level 5 certified title, equivalent to a Baccalaureate degree plus two years, by the Ministry of Labour. The jury is comprised of industry leaders, former MOFs, and teachers in the respective profession, and participants must be at least 23 years old and have successfully passed the regional qualifiers.
Preparing for the competition requires months, even years. The final test spans 27 hours over three days and revolves around a specific theme, which is disclosed two years prior to the examination.
Participants are evaluated on various criteria, including technique, innovation, presentation, efficiency, and taste. They work tirelessly to meet the exacting standards and achieve the level of excellence and perfection demanded by the competition, aiming to impress the discerning jury.
The “Meilleur Ouvrier de France Pâtissier-Confiseur” competition brings together the crème de la crème of pastry and confectionery craftsmen of the current generation, with tests that are as tantalizing as they are monumental. To win the coveted title of “Meilleur Ouvrier de France Pâtissier-Confiseur” and don the prestigious “blue, white, and red” collar, the masters of pastry and confectionery must showcase their technical prowess.
Lilian Bonnefoi, the Head Pastry Chef at Hotel du Cap-Eden-Roc for 28 years, has been a guiding force for Gabriel Le Quang since he began his preparations in 2020. Bonnefoi has supported and mentored him like a coach, providing guidance on training and equipment, and instilling in him a relentless pursuit of excellence and perfection.