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Food critics blamed for top chef's suicide
Ireland Online ^ | February 25, 2003

Posted on 02/25/2003 6:55:13 AM PST by Dog Gone

The suicide of famed chef Bernard Loiseau sent shock waves through France today and sparked condemnation from fellow culinary masters who accused the country’s all-powerful food critics of pushing him over the edge.

Loiseau, 52, was found dead in the bedroom of his home in Saulieu, near his three-star Cote d’Or restaurant in Burgundy.

A rifle was found at his side. Staff and family members said he had committed suicide.

The news sent the gastronomic world into mourning and quickly sparked debate about the merits of restaurant guides’ rating systems which chefs await each year with bated breath.

Loiseau maintained his top rating of three stars in the 2003 edition of the benchmark Michelin Red Guide. However, he lost two points, going from 19 to 17, in the 20 point rating system of the GaultMillau. That guide has gained in prestige and power in recent years.

“He said, ‘If I lose a star, I’ll kill myself,”’ said another three-star chef, Jacques Lameloise, who has a restaurant in Chagny in the Saone-et-Loire region.

Paul Bocuse, who said he spoke with Loiseau three times a week, predicted that the chef’s death would raise longer-term questions about the ratings system.

“I am sure that Bernard was very affected by the loss of these two points. We should not allow ourselves to be manipulated like that – I give you a star, I take one away,” Bocuse said. “These critics are like eunuchs: They know what to do but they can’t do it.”

He added: “The profession is going to react.”

Loiseau’s widow, Dominique, said her husband had recently been very tired and had not taken a holiday in years.

Loiseau was an innovator in the world of gastronomy, the only French chef traded on the stock exchange. The shares were suspended until further notice today.

The chef also had a line of frozen foods, three restaurants in Paris and a boutique near his Cote d’Or” restaurant.

The Bernard Loiseau company said it would go on despite Loiseau’s “sudden” death, with the various establishments shutting down only for the funeral, likely to be held Friday.


TOPICS: News/Current Events
KEYWORDS: culinary; france; frenchcuisine; suicide; toughfroglegs
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Someone rained on his souffle.
1 posted on 02/25/2003 6:55:13 AM PST by Dog Gone
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To: Dog Gone
Or peed in his pate.
2 posted on 02/25/2003 6:56:16 AM PST by mewzilla
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Comment #3 Removed by Moderator

To: Dog Gone
Poor self-esteem is killing all the great chefs of Europe.
4 posted on 02/25/2003 6:57:27 AM PST by TruthShallSetYouFree
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To: Dog Gone
Uh--suicide is usually a sign of deep, underlying problems and to blame something or someone external to that person is rediculous.
5 posted on 02/25/2003 6:59:24 AM PST by aeronca
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To: aeronca
Yeah, but we are talking about the French here...
6 posted on 02/25/2003 7:01:24 AM PST by mewzilla
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To: Dog Gone
Speaking of French food, the French Toast I got at the IHOP last Saturday morning left much to be desired. French cooking has certainly gone downhill in these parts as well. Even the French fries at Applebees aren't as good as they used to be. I might have to start having rice with my fish.

It's certainly been a bad year for French cuisine.

7 posted on 02/25/2003 7:05:42 AM PST by SamAdams76 (California wine tastes better - boycott French wine!)
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To: mewzilla

Frog's Legs with Garlic Purée and Parsley Jus

An original recipe from Bernard Loiseau of La Côte d'Or in Saulieu, France

Preparation time: Under 30 minutes
Cooking time: Under 30 minutes
Cost: Reasonable
Difficulty: Relatively easy

8 posted on 02/25/2003 7:06:30 AM PST by Dog Gone
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To: mewzilla
Perhaps the film should be re-titled:

"WHO is killing the great chefs of Europe."
9 posted on 02/25/2003 7:08:01 AM PST by Doctor Stochastic (Vegetabilisch = chaotisch is der Charakter der Modernen. - Friedrich Schlegel)
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To: Dog Gone
My dad actually likes frogs' legs. Euwww. I guess I didn't inherit his adventurous palate.
10 posted on 02/25/2003 7:08:11 AM PST by mewzilla
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To: Dog Gone
That's really sad. I think I saw him on "Iron Chef" once.
11 posted on 02/25/2003 7:08:13 AM PST by Tax-chick
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To: Tax-chick
That's really sad. I think I saw him on "Iron Chef" once.

Me too. I think he lost to Ron Popeil.

12 posted on 02/25/2003 7:10:59 AM PST by Focault's Pendulum (I just bought the Maginot Line on E Bay.)
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To: Focault's Pendulum
Why didn't he kill himself after he lost on iron chef?
13 posted on 02/25/2003 7:15:18 AM PST by RolandBurnam
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To: Dog Gone
Paul Bocuse, who said he spoke with Loiseau three times a week, predicted that the chef’s death would raise longer-term questions about the ratings system.

So if you make three stars and then threaten to commit suicide, Michelin should never change your rating?

14 posted on 02/25/2003 7:17:54 AM PST by PBRSTREETGANG
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To: RolandBurnam
Why didn't he kill himself after he lost on iron chef?

I think it was because he got a peice of the action on Popeil's new Pocket Truffle Chopper.

15 posted on 02/25/2003 7:18:15 AM PST by Focault's Pendulum (I just bought the Maginot Line on E Bay.)
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To: Focault's Pendulum
"I think he lost to Ron Popeil. "

LOL.....That was COLD!

Nam Vet

16 posted on 02/25/2003 7:19:52 AM PST by Nam Vet (Rooting for 'Big Al Sharpton', Savior of the Dims. (America's Mugabe?))
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To: Dog Gone
This just in.... The GaultMillau has revised their rating of Chef Bernard Loiseau . Instead of 19 points, a counting error had caused the publication to only give the chef 17 points. The new rating will restore the 19 points that had been originally intended. GaultMillau would like to apologize and hopes there are no hard feelings.
17 posted on 02/25/2003 7:22:05 AM PST by Paradox
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To: Dog Gone
The French have rifles???
18 posted on 02/25/2003 7:22:07 AM PST by small voice in the wilderness
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To: small voice in the wilderness
Oh man. LOL
19 posted on 02/25/2003 7:24:53 AM PST by Dog Gone
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To: Dog Gone
I hope he got a chance to eat some *real* food before he died... Kraft Macaroni & Cheese and SPAM casserole! Yum!
20 posted on 02/25/2003 7:27:08 AM PST by chilepepper
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To: Nam Vet
LOL.....That was COLD!

Just wait until next season for the premiere of the new reality show..."Chef's of the Antarctic." Probably won't last long though.. there are only so many ways to prepare penguin.

21 posted on 02/25/2003 7:27:42 AM PST by Focault's Pendulum (I just bought the Maginot Line on E Bay.)
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To: Dog Gone
How unbelievably silly a thing to kill oneself over. Get a grip dude, its just food. Who care's what a critic thinks.

On second thought maybe this could be traslated into movie reviews over here. Can we convince Baldwin and Streisand to DO IT, if they tank in the reviews? Just a thought.
22 posted on 02/25/2003 7:31:11 AM PST by WilliamWallace1999
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To: small voice in the wilderness
They get them from the French Army.

They've never been fired, and only dropped once.

L

23 posted on 02/25/2003 7:31:28 AM PST by Lurker (When I want your opinion, I'll beat it out of you.)
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To: Lurker
Okay, I'll say it... "Can't stand the heat? Stay outta the kitchen!"
24 posted on 02/25/2003 7:33:27 AM PST by RoughDobermann
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To: small voice in the wilderness
They're only effective at close range.
25 posted on 02/25/2003 7:33:39 AM PST by js1138
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To: Dog Gone
Ever see Theatre of Blood?

--Boris

26 posted on 02/25/2003 7:33:48 AM PST by boris
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To: Dog Gone
The ultimate cheese eating surrender.
27 posted on 02/25/2003 7:33:49 AM PST by buccaneer81 (Plus de fromage, s'il vous plait...)
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To: SamAdams76
You failed to mention French Vanilla Ice Cream and French's mustard. (There's apparently a lot more to French cuisine than you're aware.)
28 posted on 02/25/2003 7:35:07 AM PST by PBRSTREETGANG
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To: small voice in the wilderness
The French hunt deer! And with some really big rifles.

They drive the deer with beaters and then use someting like a .300 Win mag to take a shot at a RUNNING deer within 40yd or so. I read about this somewhere and it does sound crazy.

Afterwards they lay out one hell of a lunch on camp tables.
29 posted on 02/25/2003 7:37:42 AM PST by SBprone
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To: Dog Gone
Food critics blamed for top chef's suicide

Lucky they didn't mention the dirty knife...

30 posted on 02/25/2003 7:39:48 AM PST by dirtboy
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To: Dog Gone
He couldn't take the heat so he got out of the kitchen.
31 posted on 02/25/2003 7:40:50 AM PST by Spruce
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To: dirtboy
Excellent.
32 posted on 02/25/2003 7:43:58 AM PST by Petronski (I'm not always cranky.)
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To: Petronski
Yep, once again, life imitates Python...
33 posted on 02/25/2003 7:45:35 AM PST by dirtboy
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To: WilliamWallace1999
"Who care's what a critic thinks."

Exactly, Mark Twain used to send his critics stick pins with a little gold beetle on the head. He called them the 'Golden Tumblebug Award'.

"In your honor Sir. As a reminder that as with critics, the tumblebug is one of the few creatures God made that must lay it's eggs in the excrement of another in order for them to hatch."
34 posted on 02/25/2003 7:46:02 AM PST by Lee Heggy
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To: Dog Gone
The whole country has lost 2 stars in my book. Maybe they'll all follow this courageous leader's example.
35 posted on 02/25/2003 7:46:31 AM PST by Republic of Texas
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To: mewzilla
Yeah, but we are talking about the French here...

I'm surprised a Frenchman even knew how to pull a trigger.

36 posted on 02/25/2003 7:48:10 AM PST by ErnBatavia ((Bumperootus!))
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To: Dog Gone
I don't know about the rest of you guys, but as far as I'm concerned, the loss of a world-class chef is a loss to humanity. Every household should have at least one.
37 posted on 02/25/2003 7:49:20 AM PST by 1rudeboy
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To: ErnBatavia
I'm surprised a Frenchman even knew how to pull a trigger.

Actually, the chef thought he was aiming at a critic but had the gun pointed backwards...

38 posted on 02/25/2003 7:51:46 AM PST by dirtboy
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To: Dog Gone; dighton; general_re; aculeus; babylonian
Killed by the competition.


39 posted on 02/25/2003 7:52:09 AM PST by Thinkin' Gal
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To: Dog Gone
"If I lose a star, I'll kill myself."


Wow. Talk about a type A personality.
40 posted on 02/25/2003 8:01:15 AM PST by ricpic
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To: Dog Gone
These critics are like eunuchs:

Takes one to know one!

41 posted on 02/25/2003 8:03:11 AM PST by Lil'freeper (The pot calling the kettle....)
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To: Thinkin' Gal; Dog Gone; dighton; general_re; babylonian
Actually this happened once before. In the 1960's I dined at a one-star restaurant called La Boullabaisse in an unfashionable Paris location. The food was "okay" the decor was dark and depressing and the tables were nearly all unoccupied.

A few months later, back in the States, I read that the owner had killed himself after Michelin removed his one star.

It's not only food.
42 posted on 02/25/2003 8:03:56 AM PST by aculeus
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To: boris
"Life's but a walking shadow, a poor player, that struts and frets his hour upon the stage And then is heard no more; it is a tale told by an idiot, full of sound and fury, Signifying Nothing."
-- William Shakespeare
43 posted on 02/25/2003 8:04:03 AM PST by Positive
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To: Dog Gone
If I lose a star, I’ll kill myself

You gotta like a guy who says what he does and does what he says. On the other hand, since he lost two stars, he should have taken his out.

44 posted on 02/25/2003 8:08:21 AM PST by paul51
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To: small voice in the wilderness
The French have rifles???

I'm sure you meant to say trifles.

45 posted on 02/25/2003 8:09:05 AM PST by Alouette
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To: SBprone
I used to watch the locals do a "battre" across from our window, when we lived in a farm in France. I knew the "hunters". They would line up in a row, blow a bugle and stomp across the fields, woods and brambles.

The little deer in the woods would be only the ones planted for the purpose! Whether deer or pheasants the game was just enough for the shoot. Nothing remained long afterwards. Pheasants would wander in to our yard and join the chickens, tame as can be. None would survive the winter, replete with raptors, owls, few game.

They had just as much fun doing a battre with foxes.

One person would get the chance to blast the deer. Then they would all celebrate the killing. I have talked with the locals for hours. Never a one could come close to understand how we view hunting.

Despite the friends and some decent ones, I cannot stand Socialist France. The stereotypes we read here do not start to do justice to the truly ridiculous ones extant.
46 posted on 02/25/2003 8:12:29 AM PST by 8mmMauser (molon labe)
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To: Dog Gone
Monty Python Scripts


Restaurant Sketch

The cast:

WIFE
Carol Cleveland
MAN
Graham Chapman
WAITER
Terry Jones
HEAD WAITER
Michael Palin
MANAGER
Eric Idle
COOK
John Cleese

The sketch:

(Scene : A couple are seated at a table in a restaurant.)

Wife: It's nice here, isn't it?

Man: Oh, very good restaurant, three stars you know.

Wife: Really?

Man: Mmm...

Waiter: Good evening, sir! Good evening, madam! And may I say what a pleasure it is to see you
here again, sir!

Man: Oh thank you. Well there you are dear. Have a look there, anything you like. The boeuf en
croute is fantastic.

Waiter: Oh if I may suggest, sir ... the pheasant à la reine, the sauce is one of the chefs most
famous creations.

Man: Em... that sounds good. Anyway just have a look... take your time. Oh, er by the way - got a bit
of a dirty fork, could you ... er·.. get me another one?

Waiter: I beg your pardon.

Man: Oh it's nothing ... er, I've got a fork a little bit dirty. Could you get me another one? Thank you.

Waiter: Oh ... sir, 1 do apologize.

Man: Oh, no need to apologize, it doesn't worry me.

Waiter: Oh no, no, no, I do apologize. I will fetch the head waiter immediatement.

Man: Oh, there's no need to do that!

Waiter: Oh, no no... I'm sure the head waiter, he will want to apologize to you himself. I will fetch him
at once.

Wife: Well, you certainly get good service here.

Man: They really look after you... yes.

Head Waiter: Excuse me monsieur and madame. (examines the fork) It's filthy, Gaston ... find out
who washed this up, and give them their cards immediately.

Man: Oh, no, no.

Head Waiter: Better still, we can't afford to take any chances, sack the entire washing-up staff.

Man: No, look I don't want to make any trouble.

Head Waiter: Oh, no please, no trouble. It's quite right that you should point these kind of things out.
Gaston, tell the manager what has happened immediately! (The Waiter runs off)

Man: Oh, no I don't want to cause any fuss.

Head Waiter: Please, it's no fuss. I quite simply wish to ensure that nothing interferes with your
complete enjoyment of the meal.

Man: Oh I'm sure it won't, it was only a dirty fork.

Head Waiter: I know. And I'm sorry, bitterly sorry, but I know that... no apologies I can make can alter
the fact that in our restaurant you have been given a dirty, filthy, smelly piece of cutlery...

Man: It wasn't smelly.

Head Waiter: It was smelly, and obscene and disgusting and I hate it, I hate it ,.. nasty, grubby, dirty,
mingy, scrubby little fork. Oh ... oh . . . oh . . . (runs off in a passion as the manager comes to the
table)

Manager: Good evening, sir, good evening, madam. I am the manager. I've only just heard . .. may I
sit down?

Man: Yes, of course.

Manager: I want to apologize, humbly, deeply, and sincerely about the fork.

Man: Oh please, it's only a tiny bit... I couldn't see it.

Manager: Ah you're good kind fine people, for saying that, but I can see it.., to me it's like a
mountain, a vast bowl of pus.

Man: It's not as bad as that.

Manager: It gets me here. I can't give you any excuses for it - there are no excuses. I've been
meaning to spend more time in the restaurant recendy, but I haven't been too well ,.. (emotionally)
things aren'tgoing very well back there. The poor cook's son has been put away again, and poor old
Mrs Dalrymple who does the washing up can hardly move her poor fingers, and then there's
Gilberto's war wound - but they're good people, and they're kind people, and together we were
beginning to get over this dark patch ... there was light at the end of the tunnel . .. now this . .. now
this...

Man: Can I get you some water?

Manager: (in tears) It's the end of the road!!

(The cook comes in; he is very big and comes a meat cleaver.)

Cook: (shouting) You bastards! You vicious, heartless bastards! Look what you've done to him!
He's worked his fingers to the bone to make this place what it is, and you come in with your petty
feeble quibbling and you grind him into the dirt, this fine, honourable Man, whose boots you are not
worthy to kiss. Oh... it makes me mad... mad! (slams cleaver into the table)

(The head waiter comes in and tn'es to restrain him. )

Head Waiter: Easy, Mungo, easy... Mungo... (clutches his head in agony) the war wound!... the
wound... the wound...

Manager: This is the end! The end! Aaargh!! (stabs himself with the fork)

Cook: They've destroyed him! He's dead!! They killed him!!! (goes completely mad)

Head Waiter: (trying to restrain him) Mungo... never kill a customer. (in pain) Oh . .. the wound! The
wound! (he and the cook fight furioasly and fall over the table)

(On the Screen a Caption appears - 'AND NOW THE PUNCH-LINE')

Man: Lucky we didn't say anything about the dirty knife...
47 posted on 02/25/2003 8:13:04 AM PST by xp38
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To: aeronca
**Uh--suicide is usually a sign of deep, underlying problems and to blame something or someone external to that person is rediculous.**

BTTT!
48 posted on 02/25/2003 8:13:57 AM PST by Salvation (†With God all things are possible.†)
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To: Dog Gone
Emeril Lagasse would've said "@#&* 'em", and opened three more gourmet restaurants, attesting the wonderfulness of healthy portions, pork fat, garlic, salt, and spices.
49 posted on 02/25/2003 8:17:28 AM PST by Chancellor Palpatine (those who unilaterally beat their swords into plowshares wind up plowing for those who don't)
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To: Dog Gone
Top 5 Signs Your Chef is Suicidal:

5.) Teardrops in the bouillabaisse.

4.) Copies of Suicidal Chef magazine conspicuously scattered about the kitchen.

3.) Spends too much time with head stuck in oven.

2.) Gives away his wire whisk.

1.) Binges on Velveeta and Ritz crackers.

50 posted on 02/25/2003 8:17:42 AM PST by Sloth (I feel like I'm taking crazy pills!)
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