Flemish gastronomes gain international attention


Edouard Cointreau, born 1947, originates from the French distilling dynasty of the hyponymous, world-famous orange liquor. In their day, his forefathers were already famed confectioners and patissiers in the Loire Region around the French city of Angers. So, gastronomy is in Edouard’s blood.

In 1995, he set up the ‘Gourmand World Cookbook Awards’, annual awards for the best cookery and wine books, and TV cookery programmes. Around 200 countries compete in this prestigious international competition, the only one of its kind. Just call it the Oscars of gastronomic culture fired with the spirit of the Olympics. It’s a meeting place for authors, publishers, chefs and journalists.

At the 2017 edition in China, as many as five Flemings were awarded prizes. TV or hobby chef, entrepreneur, health guru, cookery phenomenon, wine expert, culinary photographer or simply gourmet … they all have something to do with cooking and eating. Ellen Kegels gained first prize in the category ‘Latin American cookery books outside Latin America’, Filip Salmon won silver with ‘Wine in Belgium’, queen of the sales figures Pascale Naessens came second in the category ‘Best Cookery Book’, Sofie Dumont and finally Regula Ysewijn both came third in respectively ‘TV Celebrity Chef Europe’ and ‘Culinary Heritage’.