The exodus of Parisian chefs to the countryside

“If the Parisians want to come,” he added, “they can come.” But he does nothing to openly attract them. His ambition is less to become an innkeeper than a brewer, baker and above all a producer of his own ingredients.

“I’m pretty sure if you talk to any chef, they’ll come up with the same kind of reason: to have control over the products,” he said of his motivations. But then he dithered: “Maybe I just become an old man and want to be in the countryside. I think that’s probably it.”

Age aside (the father of three is just 36), others may soon follow his example. Martin, in particular, thinks that he too will end up perpetuating his part-time move to the Loire.

“I think over time we might be happier raising animals and making our products there,” he mused, “rather than being in Paris five days a week. “.

The French capital’s love of local is certainly on the rise, with restaurateurs realizing that tapping into the richness of the surrounding countryside has become an expectation rather than an exception for many Parisian diners. But watching Delling-Williams roam his land with young sons in tow, inviting them to smell the fresh garlic of spring and dig radishes from the ground, it’s perhaps no wonder he isn’t the single leader with greener pastures in mind.

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