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Lièvre à la royale

Building on the success of the first edition in 2016, the world championship of “lièvre à la royale”, founded by Thomas Boullault, chef of the Michelin starred restaurant l’Arôme in Paris, was held again this year. It was held during the Journées Gastronomiques de Sologne in Romorantin- Lanthenay (Loire-et-Cher). The contest required each candidate to present a lièvre à la royale with all the trimmings in an hour and a half, the preparation and sauce having been prepared earlier. “We are very happy because there are more and more candidates, and they all are talented chefs,” praised Thomas Boullault, the organiser. On the 28th of October 2017, the finalists, chosen by dossier among 27 candidates, faced off against each other in front of an audience in the Hall of the Fabrique Normant, a former Matra factory rebuilt as a 4,000m² exhibition area. All contestants hailed from prestigious establishments: Albert Vezzoni (Le Chabichou in Courchevel), Ludovic Nardozza (sous-chef at the Domaine de Clairefontaine in Chonasl’Amballan), Aurélien Largeau (La Maison d’à Côté in Montlivault), Kevin Pernette (Club de la Chasse in Paris), Grégory Gbiorczyk (Cercle de l’union interalliée in Paris), Tomofumi Uchimura (Lameloise in Chagny) Alexandre Monmarche (Ritz in Paris) and Maxime Delangle (Bocuse in Collonges).
The prepared plates were then presented to the members of the jury, composed mostly of chefs: Philippe Legendre (ex-Taillevent and George V), Guillaume Gomez (Elysée), Jérôme Banctel (La Réserve), Jean-Pierre Vigato (Apicius), Jean-Claude Rigolet (former chef of the Plaisir Gourmand at the Chateau Coudray-Montpensier), Thomas Boullault (l’Arôme), David Bizet (l’Orangerie in the George V, and winner in 2016) and Eric Robert (professor at the Ferrandi School). They were joined by various prominent personalities from the world of gastronomy: Cédric Duthilleul (owner of Griffonier in Paris), Eric Martins (owner of Arôme), Dominique Faye (general manager of Faye Gastronomie), Pierre Palomba (attorney) and David Khayat (a famous oncologist). After tastings and much deliberation, the jury bestowed the prize of World Champion of Lièvre à la Royale on Ludovic Nardozza, with Maxime Delangle in second place and Tomofumi Uchimura in third.