A Taste of France in Torquay
A taste of France in Torquay?
There can be few people in Torquay, or even the country, who don’t know many of the words from the iconic sit-com Fawlty To
wers. It was, after all, based on experiences of the Monty Python team’s stay in Torquay!
Enjoying a rather tasty Bœuf bourguignon over the weekend, washed down with a glass of Malbec, the words of the aforementioned Mr Fawlty came into my head….
And I quote….
Guest: “Is there anywhere they do French food?”
Basil: “Yes, France, I believe. They seem to like it there. And the swim would certainly sharpen your appetite. You’d better hurry, the tide leaves in six minutes”
Yup, it would seem that even back in the 70’s The English holiday makers in Torquay had an entente cordiale with France and were seeking out what was already becoming a fast-growing cuisine in the country. Fast forward a few years and by 2011 France had even had its gastronomy recognised by UNESCO, the first nation to do so. Mais oui, French cuisine became recognised as an “intangible cultural heritage”, reinforcing its reputation.
Here in Torquay we like a good reputation too! And, as the saying goes, we
are what we eat!! It would seem that we certainly like to immerse ourselves in the French Connection – and I should know, I have even set up a local club to embrace the language, food and culture.
The cafe-culture is now thriving in Torquay, with French-inspired menus in restaurants, cafe-bars, and tea-rooms…. And knowing how busy they always are – it would seem we really do all want a little taste of France on the Riviera!
Over the weekend locals and holiday-makers alike were definitely treated to that Riviera touch – the sun shining down on the Continental Market, tempting the crowds of locals and holiday-makers with regional pates, cheeses, baguettes and fruit. And that was just for starters! You just don’t get food like this in England do you? Oh hold on, we are in England!
So, Mr Fawlty et al, next time you hear the question “Is there anywhere they do French Food?”
The answer is simple: “Yes, Torquay! They seem to like it there”!