The Joseph Donon Institute
Having created a Museum-Library, Vincent Bourrel and Louis Vaudable tackled professional training. In fact, one of the aims of the Foundation, expressed in the first of its Articles of Association, was (and still is) to establish in conjunction with the French Culinary Academy, a technology unique to the application of French culinary arts.
The Joseph Donon Institute, the Foundation’s professional training body, is a veritable centre for improvement, responsible for spreading French gastronomy across the entire world. It take a direct and indirect interest in the higher professional education of chefs, and more generally anyone involved in the French culinary arts.
An ambitious school project in Villeneuve-Loubet did not bear fruit, but a niche was found in 1976 thanks to the law of 1971 on ongoing training. Training courses were organized at the Hospitality School in Nice thanks to the initiative and collaboration of its then principal, Raymond Armisen, who later became the Foundation’s Chairman from 1981 to 1997. They were then held in various hospitality schools.
In 1983, cuisine courses of a much higher level were established with an original formula: a famous Michelin star chef, different every day, gave lessons on his/her cuisine. These were held in the kitchens of the “Hôtel Martinez” in Cannes and the “Hôtel du Palais” in Biarritz. Over time, they acquired their letters patent in the profession. Paule Neyrat, the granddaughter of Paul Thalamas, took care of the organisation until 2001. The courses are currently managed by the Culinary and Educational Council.
The Training courses:
Since 1975, the Auguste Escoffier Foundation, within the framework of its Joseph Donon Institute (in the name of its creator), has organized high level professional ongoing training courses.
For many years, Paule Neyrat (dietician, granddaughter of Paul Thalamas and former co-worker of Auguste Escoffier) ran these courses within the prestigious setting of two famous luxury hotels: the “Hôtel Martinez” in Cannes and the “Hôtel du Palais” in Biarritz.
Many great names from French cuisine took part, collaborated and shared their know-how with young chefs of the future. After a break of a few years, the Foundation returned with training cycles bearing the “Auguste Escoffier” label in 2009.
Their organization was entrusted to Daniel Dorchies, General Secretary and Coordinator of the Auguste Escoffier Foundation’s Conseil Culinaire & Pédagogique (CPP: Culinary and Educational Council). It is comprised of emeritus names from cuisine and gastronomy, such as Philippe Joannès (MOF), Jean-Marc Delacourt (MOF) and Jean-Pierre Rous (Master Sommelier).
Several training courses have taken place with high quality speakers: Didier Aniès, Régis Marcon, Serge Viera, Thierry Thiercelin, Andrée Rosier, Romain Corbière, Jean-Luc Danjou,
Christophe Felder (above), Jean-Marc Delacourt, Jean-Yves Laurenguer, Sébastien Chambru, Jean Montagard, Yves Terillon, etc.
Several partnerships have been entered into with:
- Cuisine Mode d'Emploi(s) (Thierry Marx)
- the Ministry for Justice Youth Legal Protection Division: Departments responsible for the protection of minors
- The five Nice LEA Hospitality Schools: Ecole Hôtelière et de Tourisme Paul Augier in Nice, Lycée Professionnel Auguste Escoffier in Cagnes-sur-Mer, Lycée Professionnel Francis de Croisset in Grasse, Lycée Anne-Sophie Pic in Toulon and the Lycée Professionnel Paul Valéry in Menton.
Due to the reforms in Professional Training, there have not been any new training actions. These should start back up again as of 2019.