La semaine francaise…Singapur

Story and photos by Dr. Michael Lim The Travelling Gourmet TM

All rights reserved copyright


The impeccable and debonair Travelling Gourmet goes to attend a soiree with…

MONSIEUR Grégoire Debré the ever dynamic Directeur of SOPEXA South East Asia…and Her Excellency Madame  Laurence Beau, the Deputy Head of Mission of the French Embassy in Singapore. It was a most enjoyable event with wines and French style Canapes made by a Japanese Chef who cooks French cuisine with a Japanese twist. This restaurant is very fascinating as it has a French Sommelier. More about them later…

Held in OCF Restaurant, helmed by the GM, Novalan, one of the nicest restauranteurs I have ever met. Nova and I go back a long way. he was the Head Sommelier of the Raffleas Grill in ‘la grand dame’ of Singapore, the Raffles Hotel.  Now he runs OCF Restaurant as the GM. OCF also provided some of the little bites and French-style canapes!

Not many know that SOPEXA’s Grégoire is related to Michel Jean-Pierre Debré (15 January 1912 – 2 August 1996), the first Prime Minister of the fifth Republic of France. Always modest, Gregoire told me about the upcoming “la semaine francaise” or French Week, “We have a casual and informal soiree to preview the week when we celebrate all things French!”    

I shall drink to that!” was my response…and I did. Tall and jolie Morgane Foucaud showcased her Cheeses and Sauccison and Salamis from her company, La Petite Boutique. I simply adored the little cute meaty sausages! YUMMIE! I am a Carnivore at heart n’est pas! Her Bleu de Gex Fromage de Dauphine is superbe! Not for the faint hearted, it will grow hairs on your chest! and blow your socks off too! I overheard a young “Ah Lian” like lady who I categorised as one who is more into Char Koay Teow and You Tiao… than Blue cheese…She gamely  tried some and grimaced, “It’s really strong!” she said to her strumpety friend. Well, one man’s meat is another man’s poison. There are those who hate caviar and black truffles! Lucklily for me, I am not one of them…Wahahahah!

It really was most enjoyable to have an intelligent conversation with HE The Deputy Head of the French Embassy. Elle est tres charmant et intelligent…When Laurence heard that I had just returned from Washington DC in the USA, she asked with a mischievious twinkle in her eyes, “Who will win the US Presidential Election?” I sipped my wine and answered diplomatically, My very good mon ami in England who you  French call “le roast beef” says, “It is a choice between the terrible witch and the terrifying wizard…c’est complique…” Laurence laughed heartily, showing a set of very nice teeth. My father always advised me. “Always talk to diplomats…diplomatically. He was a very wise gentleman. Well, maybe Trump will be the next US President…and it may not be so bad for the world…Time will tell.

Laurence continued, “D’accord, c’est complique…you know the English call us “Frogs” so we are even!”

I love French cuisine and frogs too done in the Oriental or in the Occidental style…I love Paris in the Springtime…


When you savour and relish French cuisine and good French wines…it is truly “La vie en rose…”



Yes, there is never a dull moment when you are The Travelling Gourmet TM…:-)


OCF Restaurant…It is named after Sir Stamford Raffles’ first wife…

Olivia Cassivelaun Fancourt


The Arts House, 1 Old Parliament Lane #02-02

Singapore 179429. Contact Us +65 6333 9312




About thetravellinggourmet

As a renowned Travel, Food & Wine Writer he has travelled the world in a keen & indomitable pursuit of exotic delicacies & fine wines. His articles have been published in over 20 prestigious publications, both local & international. Dr. Lim has toured and trained in Wine Evaluation & Oenology in most of the world's top wine producing areas from France to Australia. The Travelling Gourmet says, "Gastronomy has no frontier. These are the gastronomic voyages of The Travelling Gourmet. My unending mission. To explore strange new cuisines, to seek out new wines and new culinary experiences, to boldly go where no gourmet has gone before...." Have pen, will travel. All rights reserved. No part of this publication may be reproduced or transmitted in any form or by any means, electronic or mechanical, including photocopy, recording, or any other information storage & retrieval system, without permission from Dr. Michael Lim The Travelling Gourmet and/or MSN. Material may be works of fiction. Names, characters, places and incidents may be true but may also be products of the author's imagination or are used fictitiously. Any resemblance whatsoever to actual person or persons, either dead or living, events, or locales may be entirely and purely coincidental and unintentional. No part of this website may be used to villify others or for criminal purposes. Interests: Travel, Food, Wines, Cooking, Wine Appreciation, Parachuting, Languages, Music, Reading, Swimming, Hunting, Ballet, Fencing, Archery, Anthropology and more... The Travelling Gourmet is a copyrighted trademark. All rights and photos reserved. No part may be reproduced without permission.
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