The food world is full of connoisseurs – steak fans, oyster mavens, cheese authorities, whisky and wine snobs, even soup Nazis. But have you ever once met a chicken aficionado?
For a long time, I felt there really wasn’t a whole lot of difference between one roasted chicken and another. They all seemed pretty good to me – kind of like pizza (“The worst pizza I’ve ever had was pretty darn good.”).
Occasionally I tried roasting a better bird – organic, pasture-raised, “walking about” birds, etc. They were twice the price and marginally better than the garden variety supermarket industrial chicken.
Some years ago, however, I happened to be on a road trip through France and quite by accident arrived in Bourg-en Bresse for a night. I had a vague notion that the region was known for a specific breed of something-or-other, and then I saw a sign, followed by another and another advertising “Poulet de Bresse.”
Of course, that evening I had to try one. I selected a restaurant at random (can’t even remember the name), and Joanne and I ordered our first Bresse chicken. WHAT A MOMENT! I never knew chicken could be so delicious – dense, but not tough; fat, but not fatty; intense but not gamey. Ours was served smoothed out with morel mushrooms and I suspect a ton of butter, heavy cream, shallots and maybe crème fraiche, Marasala wine or possibly Madeira. The restaurant paired it with unlimited Beaujolais from nearby Burgundy.
When I got back to the States, I made up my mind to find this Bresse chicken that I’d fallen in love with. I STRUCK OUT. Supermarkets hadn’t heard of it. Butchers said it sounded familiar, but they had no idea how to go about getting it. I was just screwed.
I’ve since learned that the French guard these birds so jealously that their eggs CANNOT be taken from their home region. Attempts to smuggle them out have proved futile. And not only is it a legally defined region of France, there are specific rules and regulations concerning how and what Bresse chickens are fed – milk solids, grains, insects, mustard seed and alfalfa, and secret all-natural stuff nobody would talk to me about.
The bird has actually achieved “Appelation d’Origine Controllée” status. Brillat-Savarin, the 19th century French epicure dubbed poulet de Bresse “the queen of chickens….the chicken of kings.”
I can’t say I blame France for keeping these chickens to themselves. Not only do they taste great, but with their white feathers, bright red comb, and steely blue feet, their appearance is as French as the country’s flag.
Attempts have been made to duplicate the breed over here. A Canadian, Peter Thiessen, developed a breed of what he called “Blue-foot chickens” in the late 1990s. Unfortunately, his entire flock was destroyed in 2004 due to the avian flu. Luckily, a few weeks before his birds were destroyed, he sold some breeders to someone in California. I understand that they can be purchased from D’Artagnan Foods over the internet for about $25 each. I’ve also heard that Thomas Keller serves Blue-feet chicken at Per Se in New York. He might sell you a wing for $25.
Poor you, you’ll just have to go to Paris for your poulet de Bresse. Note, however, that you won’t find them just anywhere. Most restaurants serve humbler birds. In fact, I remember a friend telling me about a time he and his wife ate at a simple bistro, and she asked the waiter – whose English was rudimentary – for a grilled chicken breast.
He told her, “I’m sorry, Madame, we do not have chicken Bresse.”
“You don’t have a chicken breast?”
“It is impossible, Madame,” he said, shutting her down.
A while later, another waiter brought a roast chicken to someone at a nearby table. She indignantly asked him, “What is THAT?”.
So where can you find Breese chicken in Paris? I’ll share a few of my favorite places at the end of this post. Give ‘em a shot. You’ll be pleased.
One thing to know, however: When you order a Bresse chicken, you’re typically served the whole bird – easily enough for up to three people. Often, your chicken will be ceremoniously wheeled to you on a trolley, anointed and basted with buttery jus and carved before your eyes. They’re not cheap – typically about 100 euros a bird – but it’s an entrée for three. Sides are often included in the price. And it’s the best chicken in the world. So don’t balk. Just order it, eat it, and love it.
Here are three restaurants serving poulet de Bresse that I can personally vouch for……listed in no particular order…..
32 rue Vertbois
48 87 77 48
Metro… Arts et Metiers/Temple
Le RELAIS PLAZA
Hotel Plaza Athénée
25 av Montaigne
Metro …Alma Marceau/Franklin D. Roosevelt
53 67 64 00
(Request a corner seat on one of the banquettes….see photo)
Le COQ RICO
98 rue Lepic
42 59 82 89
(Joanne and I sat at the Community Table…..fun…fun…see photo)
NOTE: At Le Coq Rico, pretty much all you can get is chicken…served several different ways….they have a duck and a pigeon preparation too…..but poulet de Breese rules here.
W T F
34 thoughts on “I’M A BRESSE MAN”
Good info. Lucky me I ran across your blog by chance
(stumbleupon). I’ve bookmarked it for later!
Wonderful site. A lot of helpful info here. I’m sending it to some buddies ans additionally sharing in delicious.
And certainly, thanks to your effort!
No nie Akurat jestem na wakacjach i nici z tematu.
Healthy living’s got to be a positive.. and the best sleep inducer.
Valuable information. Lucky me I found your web site by chance, and I am shocked why
this twist of fate did not came about in advance!
I bookmarked it.
I wanted to live abroad ciprofloxacina 500 mg para que
se usa Creditlosses were $1.6 billion compared
to $1.5 billion in the firstquarter.
Pretty portion of content. I just stumbled upon your blog and in accession capital to claim that I acquire
actually enjoyed account your blog posts. Anyway I’ll be subscribing on your
augment and even I success you get admission to persistently
solid gold – Berita dan Informasi Terbaru Bisnis, Finansial, Ekonomi, Perbankan, Investasi, Market Research dan Keuangan. Harga Emas Hari Ini, Berita
Investasi Emas, Logam Mulia, Gold Price, Solid Gold, Solid Gold
berjangka, PT. Solid Gold Berjangka, inovasisolution.com
I’m gone to convey my little brother, that he should also visit this blog on regular basis to obtain updated
from latest reports.
Fine way of telling, and nice post to obtain information about my presentation focus, which i am going
to convey in college.
Wonderful website. A lot of useful info here.
I’m sending it to some pals ans additionally sharing in delicious.
And obviously, thank you for your effort!
It’s an awesome piece of writing in support of all the web visitors; they
will get advantage from it I am sure.
En daarom zoeken ｚe hier naar mannen ԁie bereid zijn om met
hen ɑf te spreken ｅn met hen willen gaan neuken.
Hеb jij hiermee te maken en wil jе advies van ons?
Beneficial info. Fortuitous myself I ran across your website by mistake, and I am amazed the reason why that collision decided not to occurred previously! We book marked them taruhan online.
I’m impressed, I must say. Actually not often do I encounter a weblog that’s each educative and entertaining, and let me inform you, you have got hit the nail on the head. Your idea is excellent; the issue is something that not enough people are talking intelligently about. I am very happy that I stumbled throughout this in my seek for one thing relating to this.
Quality posts is the key to be a focus for the viewers to
pay a quick visit the web site, that’s what this web page is providing.
Can you tell us more about this? I’d like to find out more details.
It’s remarkable to go to see this web page and reading the views of all mates
concerning this article, while I am also keen of getting experience.
best place to buy zoloft online australia
http://zolftgenwell.org sertraline high,
can you buy zoloft over the counter in tesco
zoloft and alcohol sertraline 100mg how to buy zoloft in uk
over the counter
Hi there, always i used to check weblog posts here early in the break of day, because i love to
gain knowledge of more and more.
It’s actually very complicated in this active life to listen news on Television, thus I
just use world wide web for that reason, and take the most recent information.
Great items from you, man. I have keep in mind your stuff prior to and
you are just extremely wonderful. I really like what you’ve got right here, certainly
like what you are saying and the way in which wherein you say it.
You make it entertaining and you continue to
take care of to stay it smart. I can not wait to
read much more from you. This is really a great website.
I quite like reading through a post that can make men and women think.
Also, many thanks for allowing me to comment!
Paragraph writing is also a excitement, if you be acquainted with then you can write or else it is complex
Thank you for another fantastic article. The place else could anyone get
that kind of info in such an ideal approach of writing?
I’ve a presentation subsequent week, and
I’m on the search for such information.
This article will assist the internet users for building up
new blog or even a blog from start to end.
I pay a visit every day a few web pages and information sites to read content, except this webpage offers quality
Appreciating the time and effort you put into your blog and
detailed information you provide. It’s good to come across a blog every once in a while that isn’t the same out of date
rehashed material. Excellent read! I’ve saved your site and I’m including your RSS feeds to my Google account.
I delight in, result in I found exactly what I used to be taking a look
for. You have ended my 4 day long hunt! God Bless you man. Have a great day.
Thank you for every other excellent post. Where
else could anyone get that type of information in such an ideal method of writing?
I have a presentation next week, and I am on the search
for such information.
Appreciate the recommendation. Will try it out.|
Incredible posting this is from you. I am really and truly thrilled to read this marvelous post. You’ve really impressed me today. I hope you’ll continue to do so!
Untuk kabar kabar bola dan prediksi terpercaya sih, kamu dapat merujuk ke halaman https://satuxbola.com, kami senantiasa update informasi ini tiap hari!