Friday 19 January 2018

French trade minister Nicole Bricq apologises for 'disgusting' state dinner remark

French trade minister Nicole Bricq
French trade minister Nicole Bricq

Maria Tadeo

French trade minister Nicole Bricq has apologised after being caught on an open mic saying the food served to China's president was "disgusting".

French officials spent weeks planning a lavish dinner for Chinese president Xi Jinping and his wife, but it seems Ms Bricq was unimpressed by the menu, which included foie gras, roast chicken with mushroom sauce and a chocolate dessert.

She was caught on camera telling French Prime Minister Jean-Marc Ayrault and his wife the food served at the Elysée was "disgusting" and the cuisine at Matignon, the prime minister's office, was superior.

"At Matignon, there's no comparison," she whispered. "It wasn't like that at the Elysée. No, it was disgusting, it has to be said, it was disgusting."

A spokesperson said Ms Bricq has apologised to the Elysée's head chef, Guillaume Gomez, for her inappropriate remarks.

Mr Gomez tweeted: "We'll continue to work, with the same passion and dedication."

French president Francois Hollande is expected to announce a cabinet reshuffle next week after the second round of local elections on Sunday.


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