Bailliage - Confrérie de la Châine des Rôtisseurs





Fine friends, fine food, fine wine.


Dame de la Chaine

Julia Child Centennial

Cavey's Restaurant

January 29, 2012

Members of the Hartford Bailliage celebrated the 100th birthday of Julia Child with a special dinner at Cavey’s restaurant in Manchester, CT, recognized as the state’s best French restaurant, on January 29, 2012. We were pleased that Bailli Provincial John Vyhnanek could be present as he was able to share some personal recollections of the legendary personality, as well as administer the ceremonies.

John’s admiration of Julia began when he was a sophomore in high school, and he admitted to cutting class to watch her popular show, “The French Chef.” Later, as he progressed through his own culinary career, John had the opportunity to meet Julia. He called her a “nice person, simple and easy to talk to, not at all pretentious.” John recounted one particularly memorable filming of her PBS show where the 6-foot-two, 180-lb Julia had a tussle with a 28-lb lobster. Julia won.

In addition to receiving numerous awards and accolades, Julia was inducted into the Chaîne des Rôtisseurs at Faneuil Hall during the Grand Chapitre in Boston in 1996. She died at the age of 92, but would have been 100 on August 15, 2012.

The dinner was also an occasion to induct a new member, Jason Kasprzak, elevate Chevalier Joe Musumeci, and present the Star of Excellence to Chargé de Missions Frank Szilagyi and Vice Chargée de Presse Ann Waller. Frank was honored for his long-time involvement with the Hartford Bailliage and Ann for her work as Vice Chargée de Presse for the chapter.

The chapter was delighted to welcome some special guests from the Netherlands to the festivities: Jan van Os, Bailli du Nord-Est des Pays-Bas, and Richtje Rusch, Officier de la Chaine, Pays–Bas.

The menu as prepared by Cavey’s chefs would have made Julia proud. The champagne reception of gougeres and tarte flambée aux oignons confits was served with a Domaine Collin Crémant de Limoux from Languedoc-Roussillon. Dinner began with traditional salmon rillettes with grilled toasts and a 2010 Vigneau-Chevreau, Cuvée Silex, Vovray Sec. This was followed by a boudin blanc with perigourd truffles and Stonington shrimp. This course was accompanied by a 2009 La Chaume, Prima Donna, Vin de Pays de la Vendee. Following was a French country ragoût with house-made Rowland Farms garlic sausage and pork belly, accompanied by an aromatic Domaine Chopin Côte de Nuits-Village 2009 from Burgundy. The main course was a confit of Rohan duck with endives, lentils, and petite onion aigre-doux, which was served with a Elian da Ros, Chante Coucou, Côte du Marmandais 2009 from Bordeaux. For dessert, a baba au rhum classique was paired with a Château La Caussade Ste-Croix-du-Mont 2009.

It was a fitting tribute to a woman who demystified French cuisine and, through her “simple, down-to-earth” approach, made it more approachable for the American public.