HEADLINES [click on headline to view story]:

Chaie des Rotisseurs looking towards 30th anniversary

PATA Travel Mart 2004 is counting on co-operation

Chaine des Rotisseurs looking towards 30th anniversary

International gastronomic society joins amateurs and professionals

Marion Vogt, Bailli hon. Chiang Mai

This coming November the Chaine des Rotisseurs, an international gastronomic society that re-grouped in Paris in 1950, celebrates 30 years in Thailand.

The ‘logo’ of the Chaine des Rotisseurs here made out of flowers, the center point at one of the Chaine dinners.

The Chaine des Rotisseurs is devoted to promoting fine dining and “les arts de la table” in its broadest sense. It is based on the traditions and practices of the old French craft guild of goose roasters, birds that were particularly appreciated in those days. The Guild of Oyers Rotisseurs was founded in 1248 and was granted a Royal Charter and Coat of Arms in 1610.

The objectives of the Guild included perpetuating the quality standards befitting the royal table. Soon the craft of Rotisseurs encompassed the preparation of all the various meats and fowls destined for the spit, and the activities of the Guild were under Royal Patronage. However, in 1789, during the French Revolution, all the guilds were abolished.

The Chaine des Rotisseurs in its present form was reborn in France in 1950 through three gourmets, Curnonsky, known as the prince of gastronomes, Dr. Auguste Becart and Jean Valby; and two professionals, Louis Giraudon and Marcel Dorin. They decided to revive the form and tradition of the Chaine by restoring the pride of culinary excellence lost during a period of wartime starvation. The Chaine des Rotisseurs was re-incorporated and the Coat of Arms was restored to the fraternity.

Today, the Chaine has members in more than 120 countries with over 25,000 members. It creates a bond of friendship across professions, cultures, and boundaries, giving special attention to maintaining the art of the cuisine and supporting young professionals.

Each Chapter, called a “bailliage” (English “bailiwick’’) is headed by a bailli (“bailiff’’) and other officers who plan the individual chapter’s activities. The national societies are governed by a national Board of Directors and a national council which, in general, follow the programs and policies set down by the international society still headquartered in Paris.

All bailliages offer fine dining events, often black tie, in the best local restaurants and hotels. The menus and dishes are created exclusively for these dinners by the chefs, many of whom are also members of the confrere. Each bailliage also holds one grand gala event each year to celebrate the induction of new members. Members receive a distinctive sash which is worn at Cha๎ne gatherings.

The activities of the Chaine are not limited to grand dining. Less formal dinners, picnics and barbecues also play an important role in the schedule of each bailliage. The programs vary, depending upon local resources and interests. The society also offers a growing number of regional and national events that are open to all members. Members in good standing may also attend the Grand Chapitre Dinner held once a year by each national bailliage around the world. Many of our bailliages also hold events to support local culinary schools and many national and local chapters of the Chaine des Rotisseurs provide scholarships to schools which are involved in the training of future chefs or funding for other activities linked with the objectives of the group.

Membership is by invitation only and offers the opportunity for new members to meet people who share a common interest in fine dining and good fellowship. For our professional restaurateurs and hoteliers, it offers opportunities to demonstrate their exceptional skills and creativity to a discerning and appreciative audience.

Underlying growth is the organization’s sense of purpose. A key criterion which distinguishes the Chaine from other organizations involved in wine or food is the interrelation between amateur and professional. Each bailliage strives for balanced membership representing professionals involved in food preparation, service in hotels, private clubs and restaurants; wine, food and equipment suppliers and world- renowned lecturers, writers and critics, as well as knowledgeable laymen who, due to their interest or well traveled backgrounds, are in a position to enjoy the pleasures engendered by good cuisine, good wine and good company.

The ‘Grand Chapitre Thailand’ celebrates the 30 year anniversary with a four day event for overseas visitors, guests, and members from around the country. The highlight will take place on Saturday, November 6, 2004 with a Gala Dinner at the ballroom of the Oriental Hotel in Bangkok. Only the best wines have been selected and the venue promises the highest standards and class.

If you are a member of the Chaine des Rotisseurs on holiday in Thailand, interested in becoming one, or would like to have more information, contact Bailli hon. Marion Vogt at 0 5323 4102 or e-mail: [email protected]

PATA Travel Mart 2004 is counting on co-operation

Concept of “soul searching” highlighted

Reinhard Hohler

The PATA Travel Mart 2004 was held at the Queen Sirikit National Convention Center (QSNCC) in Bangkok September 22-24 (see Chiang Mai Mail Vol. III No. 40, page 7).

I had the opportunity to fly from Chiang Mai to Bangkok by Orient Thai Airlines with the convenient early morning flight. Amari Watergate Hotel GM Pierre-Andre Pelletier gave me a hearty welcome and recommended his special Thai restaurant on the 4th floor, where the adviser of the menus is a 72 year old professor who used to cook for the King and still teaches at the Royal Cooking School.

Ernie A. Galito, deputy general manager of the Guam Visitors Bureau opened the press conferences. Guam is the westernmost US territory and is located in Micronesia some 3,200 km east of Hong Kong. Targeting some 1.3 million visitors in 2005, there are direct flights from Manila, Taipei and Japan.

Juthamas Siriwan, governor of TAT, introduced the promotional marketing plan for 2005 and noted that the future looks promising for the Thai tourism industry, especially when the new airport will open next year on September 29. The attendance of Thailand’s minister of tourism and sports, HE Sontaya Khunplome during the PATA press conference underlined the valuable co-operation between PATA and the government.

India is still clinging to its government-led “Incredible India” marketing campaign with something for everyone, offering a Buddhist, Himalayan and Eco-tourism circuit, while Nepal as well as the Sri Lankan Tourism Boards are banking on hope that their attractive destinations remain safe for the tourists.

Indonesia came up with the new branding “Ultimate in Diversity’” to revive the promising tourism industry after the 1997 crisis, especially in Jogjakarta and Central Java, in Sulawesi and Bali.

Tourism Malaysia is calculating with 15 million visitors in 2005 and is preparing for the ASEAN Tourism Forum in Langkawi on January 21-29 and the next PATA Travel Mart in Kuala Lumpur on September 27-30.

Cambodia presented its new energetic minister of tourism, HE Lay Prohas, who highlighted the concept of “soul searching” and noted the immense tourism development opportunities in his impoverished country.

Finally, a Malaysian Cultural & Fashion Extravaganza at the Royal Orchid Sheraton Hotel ended a very successful PATA Travel Mart.

For further information, please contact GMS Media Travel Consultant Reinhard Hohler by email [email protected] cmnet