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The Troisgros family are a family of French restaurateurs. Since 1957, Jean and Pierre Troisgros have played a significant role in the history of French cuisine. Pierre's son, Michel Troisgros, has played a major role since 1983. Michel Troisgros is the owner of the restaurant now called "La Maison Troisgros", in Roanne. The restaurant has been awarded Three Michelin stars since 1968 and was named the "best French restaurant in the world" by Gault Millau.
Hôtel Moderne (4 stars) is a member of Relais & Châteaux since 1966.
The parents: Jean-Baptiste and Marie Troisgros
Jean-Baptiste Troisgros and his wife Marie, of Burgundian origin, ran the establishment known as Café des négociants at Chalon-sur-Saône in Burgundy. They had two sons: Jean, born in 1926, and Pierre, born on 3 September 1928 at Chalon-sur-Saône. Jean-Baptiste Troisgros and Marie instilled in their sons the notion of maintaining high standards in running a restaurant.
In 1930, the Troisgros family moved to Roanne, 90 km west of Lyon, on the frontiers of Burgundy. Roanne lay on National Highway #7 (route nationale 7), and the Troigros established their Hôtel-Restaurant des Platanes across from the Roanne train station.
Jean-Baptiste and Marie Troisgros were self-taught, and their restaurant offered a regional, middle-class, and friendly atmosphere. Marie Troisgros worked in the kitchen while Jean-Baptiste worked in the dining room and managed the wine cellar. Their cuisine was simple, “sincere and true,” and its taste did not need to be disguised with sauces or burdensome decorations.
The restaurant soon acquired notoriety[clarification needed], and was renamed "Hôtel Moderne" in 1935.
Their two sons, Jean and Pierre, were raised to admire fine cuisine almost as if it were a religion. At the age of fifteen, they each began training for the restaurant business as if becoming initiates in a religion. Jean began his apprenticeship at Paris, Pierre at the Hôtel du Golf at Étretat in Normandy. Pierre also worked at Saint-Jean-de-Luz in the Basque Country.
After receiving their professional certification (CAP, or Certificat d'aptitude professionnelle), the brothers both worked at "Lucas Carton", a prestigious restaurant on the place de la Madeleine in the 8th arrondissement of Paris with the chef Gaston Richard. They formed a lasting friendship there with fellow chef Paul Bocuse and the Troisgros brothers then worked at La Pyramide restaurant at Vienne near Lyon, which had been the restaurants of master chefs Fernand Point and Paul Mercier. The brothers then worked at Maxim's and the Hôtel de Crillon before returning home to Roanne. Their father wanted their help and for his sons to inherit the family business.
The Troisgros Brothers (Pierre and Jean)
In 1957, the "Hôtel Moderne" became known as "les Frères Troisgros", with Pierre working as chef, and Jean as master saucier. Their father Jean-Baptiste, with his experience of dealing directly with customers, worked as maître d'hôtel and sommelier. At the end of meals, Jean-Baptiste would introduce his two sons to restaurant patrons.
The Michelin Guide gave them their first star in 1955, the second in 1965, and the prestigious third star in 1968. They received a score of 18/20 from Gault-Millau and 4 stars from Bottin Gourmand. In 1968, the cover of Gault-Millau magazine announced the title of an article by Christian Millau: “I have discovered the best restaurant in the world.”
In 1970, the restaurant purchased the adjacent building. In the 1980s, Pierre developed a brand of products with the Troisgros name in five boutiques in Japan. In 1983, Jean Troisgros died. Roanne’s Place de la Gare was renamed "place Jean Troisgros" in his honor and he was honored in a statue by Arman, called “Les Gourmandes.”
Pierre continued running the business with his son and future successor Michel, who began working with him in 1984. Pierre’s wife Olympe, an Italian whom Pierre had first met in Paris, died at Roanne in May 2008.
Michel, son of Pierre Troisgros, was born on 2 April 1958 at Roanne. Today he runs the business on his own. He studied at Grenoble from 1974 to 1982, and met his future wife Marie-Pierre there when he was 16 years old. They toured the world to learn the art of cooking from various master chefs: Frédy Girardet in Lausanne, Taillevent in Paris, Michel Guérard in New York and many others in Brussels, San Francisco, London, and Tokyo.
The couple had three children: Marion in 1983, César in 1986 and Léo in 1993.
- Three-star Restaurant "La Maison Troisgros"
Michel restored the original Troisgros restaurant at Roanne with his father Pierre, after the death of Michel’s uncle Jean in 1983. Michel managed the place with his wife Marie-Pierre, maîtresse d'hôtel and chief decorator. Marie-Pierre, as decorator, created a cordial and modern environment of purified design, evoking modernity, Zen, elegance and refinement. The spirit of a family business was preserved, but the assets and techniques learned during the couple’s international travels were also added to the mix. In their travels, not only did they find new ideas but came across one of the best chefs in France, Christian Fournier.
- Le Central" Restaurant
In the 1990s, Michel Troisgros opened at Roanne the restaurant "Le Central" (nicknamed “The Annex”), which featured traditional cuisine. It was located across from the train station.
- "Le Koumir" Restaurant
- "La Table du Lancaster" Restaurant
- "La Colline du Colombier" Restaurant
On 6 June 2008, Michel and Marie-Pierre Troisgros opened a few miles from Roanne a new establishment, "La Colline du Colombier", which featured a simple menu of a dozen dishes, including dishes made with Charolais and fried eggs from free-range chickens, with wines of Roanne and the Loire. The restaurant was managed by Cédric Gillio and Michel’s son, César Troisgros, worked there as well.
Michel Troisgros has a brother, Claude Troisgros, and a sister, Anne-Marie. Claude Troisgros has a restaurant ("L'Olympe", named after their mother) in Rio de Janeiro and two bistros, one in Rio, the other in Miami Beach. Anne-Marie with her husband Yves, runs the restaurant "Restaurant Gravelier", in Bordeaux.
César Troisgros, Michel’s son, did his apprencticeship by studying in kitchens across the world and then began working at "La Colline du Colombier" in June 2008.
Quotes and adages
- « Le bien manger, la joie de vivre » (“Good eating, happy life”)
- An adage that Troisgros uses was first said by Antoine de Saint-Exupéry : « On ne voit bien qu'avec le cœur, l'essentiel est invisible pour les yeux » (“It is only with the heart that one can see rightly; what is essential is invisible to the eye.”)
- « Notre métier, c'est la quête permanente du plus beau produit. L'extraordinaire d'un plat, finalement, cela tient à tellement peu de choses... » (“Our profession is the constant search for the most beautiful product. What is extraordinary about a dish, ultimately is derived from just a few things...”).
- 1968 : Michelin –three stars
- 1972 : “Best Restaurant in the World” – Christian Millau du Gault-Millau.
- 1997 et 1998 : “Best Wine List” by Wine Spectator.
- 2000 : " Restauration " Prize and " Grand Prix du Jury ". Trophées du Web.www.troisgros.fr.
- 2003 : “Chef of 2003”, Gault-Millau .
- 18/20 score in Gault-Millau.
- 29/30 score in Zagat Survey, “Best Restaurant in the World”
- 1994 : Renoir – À la table d'un impressionniste – Jean-Bernard Naudin, Jean-Michel Charbonnier et Pierre Troisgros
- 1995 : Les petits plats des Troisgros – Pierre et Michel Troisgros – Robert Laffont
- 1997 : Cuisiniers à Roanne – Jean et Pierre Troisgros – Robert Laffont
- 1998 : Cuisine de famille – Pierre et Michel Troisgros – Flammarion
- 2005 : Les meilleures recettes familiales des Troisgros – Pierre et Michel Troisgros – Editions Flammarion
- 2005 : La cuisine acidulée – Michel Troisgros – Editions LGF
- 2006 : Cuisine de famille chez les Troisgros – Pierre et Michel Troisgros – Editions Flammarion
- 2009 : Michel Troisgros et l'Italie – Michel Troisgros, Bénédicte Beaugé et Marie-Pierre Morel (photographe) – Glénat Livres – Collection "Le verre et l'assiette – les couvertures"
- 2009 : DVD Inventing cuisine : Michel Troisgros directed by Paul Lacoste – lahuit.com Editions
Chefs who have been apprenticed to the Troisgros
- Bernard Loiseau : apprentice from 1968 to 1971
- Marc Haeberlin : the 1970s
- Guy Savoy : apprenticed 1976
- Gualtiero Marchesi : the 1976
- Judy Rodgers : the 1970s
- Traci Des Jardins : the 1980/1990s
- "Le Koumir de Michel Troisgros à Moscou". Lhotellerie.fr. Retrieved 28 April 2011.
- "La table du Lancaster selon Michel Troisgros". Lesrestos.com. 18 August 2009. Retrieved 28 April 2011.
- "La rencontre avec les patrons du "Gastro", le 23 avril, à Roanne. – Les Troisgros démarrent une nouvelle campagne – - Actualité". Challenges.fr. 16 January 2008. Retrieved 28 April 2011.
- ""Cuisine(s) Michel Troisgros" à l'Hôtel Century Hyatt de Tokyo". Ccifj.or.jp. Retrieved 28 April 2011.
- "L'Hôtel Century Hyatt de Tokyo". Cuisinesmicheltroisgros.com. Retrieved 28 April 2011.
- "Anne-Marie du "Restaurant Le Gravelier" à Bordeaux". Agiroud.blog.tdg.ch. Retrieved 28 April 2011.
- "Inventing cuisine : Michel Troisgros". Lahuit.com. Retrieved 28 April 2011.
- (French) Official site
- (French) Interview de Michel Troisgros par l'Express
- (French) La Table du Lancaster – 75008 Paris
- (French) Claude Troisgros