Edward Behr Celebrates the Enduring Legacy of French Cuisine

There was once a time, before nouvelle and fusion cuisine, or today’s farm-to-table movement, when French cuisine reigned supreme on the fancy dining tables of the world. In his new book, The Food and Wine of France, Art of Eating founder Edward Behr explores the French food landscape and discovers that the traditional Gallic way is still unsurpassed when it comes to gastronomy par excellence.

On June 26, Edward Behr visits Dupont Circle Freshfarm Market at 10:00 a.m. for a book signing, then visits the store for an event at 5:00 p.m. To get you licking your lips in anticipation, here are some curious facts about French food revealed by Behr:

The iconic baguette, as we would recognize it, only began to be baked as recently the 1920s. Before that, big sourdough loaves were perceived as the quintessential French bread.

Some might find this sacrilegious, but the croissant isn’t actually French creation. Odds are it originated in Vienna, and that 100 years ago they only had around a sixth of the amount of butter they do today.

The snail-eating stereotype isn’t just a stereotype: the French munch down some 40,000 tons of escargot, and other types of snail, a year.

The largest amount of cheese produced in France, by type, isn’t camembert but emmental–otherwise known as the holey “Swiss” cheese.

Of all the iconic foods of France, the most traditional is probably soup, made daily as the evening meal in households for centuries.

If you’re anything like us, just contemplating eating and drinking your way around France, from Champagne to Provence (as the subtitle puts it), is mouthwatering. If you’re coming to the evening event, why not visit The Den beforehand, or afterwards, to enjoy a glass of wine during Happy Hour and a cheese and charcuterie platter. Santé!

Originally published at politicsprose.tumblr.com.