The Brisbane Club Special Interest Group, Gourmet Enthusiasts, would normally present a unique degustation menu, restaurant style dining and the option of matching wines at its monthly dinner.  In April, our award-winning Kitchen were preparing to present ‘Escoffier and the Menu from the Titanic’. 

Georges Auguste Escoffier (1846 – 1935) was the French chef, restauranteur and culinary writer referred to by the French press as roi des cuisiniers et cuisinier des rois (“king of chefs and chef of kings”).

Escoffier has a long association with the Ritz Hotels, The Savoy and the Carlton and was charged with supervising the kitchens on board the ship the SS Imperator during Kaiser Wilhelm II’s visit to France. The culinary experience on board the Imperator was a reproduction of Escoffier’s Carlton Restaurant in London.

Much of Escoffier’s achievement was to simplify and modernize the traditional elaborate and ornate French style. In particular, he codified the recipes for the five mother sauces:

  • Sauce béchamel – milk-based sauce, thickened with flour
  • Sauce espagnole – a fortified brown veal stock sauce, thickened with a brown roux
  • Sauce veloute – light stock-based sauce, thickened with a roux, a mixture of egg yolks and cream
  • Sauce hollandaise – an emulsion of butter and lemon (or vinegar), using egg yolk as the emulsifier
  • Sauce tomate – tomato-based

Another of Escoffier’s contributions to cooking was to elevate it to the status of a respected profession by introducing organized discipline to his kitchens and the traditional brigade structure.  His recipes, techniques and approach to kitchen management remain highly influential today, and have been adopted by chefs and restaurants around the world.

Members and their guests are invited to learn more about this renowned chef and his involvement in the menu and service for the Titanic in our upcoming video demonstration to be released to our Gourmet Enthusiasts group by email on Thursday 21 May, with a live interactive session to be held with our culinary team the following Thursday 28 May. 

Contact to join the Gourmet Enthusiasts interest group to be part of this.