The Fresh Loaf

News & Information for Amateur Bakers and Artisan Bread Enthusiasts

Our Far Flung Correspondents (again)

proth5's picture

Our Far Flung Correspondents (again)

It's been a while - but here I am, right where I need to be - in Paris at the Coupe du Monde de la Boulangerie.  After a day of tour guiding "adventures" (including the return of the "Naked Baker" - a story for which the world is not prepared) I thought I would go over to the competition area, check out the day 3 baking and snap some photos.   Then rest my tired tootsies and post them to TFL.

This is me, taking photos - which I never do in Paris - not even at my Sunday dinner at a famous landmark - so set expectations accordingly - but here they are for you...

Team Italy - baguette fantasie and other breads

Team Italy - crumb shot

Teanm France - Crumb shot

Team France - Decorative scoring

Team France - Decorative piece

Team South Korea - Decorative piece

Team Taiwan - Decorative piece

Team Peru - Decorative piece

Team USA - Decorative piece

At the Judges Tables

I could go on and on about the nuances of the competition - the fact that Taiwan was the only team the first day to finish on time - that this year Team USA finished on time, also - that the Austrian judge saw both me and the guy standing next to me almost spit out a piece of the bread from Team Taiwan (seaweed in bread - this is a love it or hate it deal - which, in a competition, is always a gamble)- the reaction of Team USA to French flour (they don't much like it) - but you don't want the blow by blow - you want the pictures...  and I took all my camera could hold.

Tomorrow we learn the results.  Let me tell you, there is some tough competition (the scoring on Team France's breads just kills me...), but I will stay true to my team.  Go Team USA!!!!!!!!!!


LindyD's picture

Oh, wow. Great photos, Pat! The French bread can-can dancer seems to have lost her leg. Did it fall before judging? I figured you would be there and would love to read about the nitty-gritty details when you have a chance. Thanks for the picture show! - Go Team USA!!

[Evening edit]  I dashed off the above comments just before leaving for lunch.  Now that I've had some time to look more closely at your (really good) photos, I'm quite enchanted with the decorative scoring and can't imagine how they get the ruffled ears.    The crumb looks quite beautiful, too.

The Baguettes Fantasie are interesting.  The boomerang baguette (Italy) reminds me of one that fell off my stone when I was foolish enough to play around with baguettes.

On closer inspection (thanks to the iPad's ability to zoom in), that French can-can dancer has problems with both legs.  Ouch!  There has to be a story behind that one.  Were her mesh stockings made of bread?

The South Korean goblet (I think it's a goblet) has a beautiful wood patina and the Tawian Laughing Buddah is amazing.

Had no idea Peru sent bakers to the Coupe du Monde - that's pretty cool.  

The USA representation of the Wild West is terrific - lovely detail on the cactus.  

Has to be an amazing and exciting experience; the heady smells and sights of being there are beyond my imagination.

Thanks to Robyn's tip, I read through Mr. Hamelman's blog.  His descriptions of the bread and food left me salivating.

Now, someday you are going to tell us about that Naked Baker, aren't you?





RobynNZ's picture

Thank you Pat. I know your aversion to photography, so your photo report is really appreciated. Like Lindy I'd love to hear more detail if you have the time/inclination!

KAF's blog has been running reports from Jeffrey Hamelman, and Paul (rainbowz) who is travelling with fellow students from his bakery class at VIU has been appointed trip blogger, although he has yet to post a report from Europain.

Taste plenty of bread for us! 

Regards, Robyn

PiPs's picture

Hi Pat,

Thanks so much for taking the time to send us the great pics and stories. I really appreciate it.

 Now how am I to deal with the jealousy?


proth5's picture

Uhhh - I'm in Paris just now having moved hotels after leading a bakery tour this morning and making it to the closing ceremony just in the nick of time to hear the winners announced - so while I was headquartered at the Hilton at the airport, typing time was easy to find - now - not so much.

Anyway, the flaw in Team France's decorative piece did cost them.  It cost them a LOT.  (and, yes, it is all made of dough - either live or dead).

Dang that cheapo camera of mine - its memory was full and I did not get pictures of the Japan breads - I will need to wax lyrical about them when I have more time.  (And - hey - I saw this thing where the camera made the picture look like you were close up, but you weren't and it wasn't fuzzy.  I gotta get me one of those!) 

But I did want to get out the morning dispatches.

Third Place - Taiwan

Second Place - USA

First Place - Japan

Expect to see some seriously happy blogging from Jeffrey Hamelman - a close friend of his coached Team Japan.

France got skunked.  Incroyable!  They will need to compete their way back in for the next Coupe.

As for jealousy - the next time you spen a night in your own cozy bed - think of me living for weeks on end in Hampton Inns and Marriott Courtyards after sitting in miserable little commuter planes.  I've earned this the hard way.

But, Paris calls.  I'll check in when it stops doing that - or I arrive back home.  Tonight we party!!!!!!

breadsong's picture

Hi Pat,
Thanks so much posting the photos...wonderful to see what was created by so many talented bakers.
So glad to hear that Team USA placed won silver!
Hope you are having a great trip!
:^) breadsong

proth5's picture

been there!

I spent my last two days in Paris "doing nothing" and have to say that this was one of the great trips to Paris that I have had.  I would not have liked to have been in the position of not having spent mucho time in the City of Lights, for then there would have been a lot of things that I would like to have seen other than baking labs and trade show booths.

But Europain is like the IBIEE trade show on steroids...

And the BBGA events did add to it greatly.

Happy Baking!


breadsong's picture

Hi Pat,
I was sorry to miss out, especially after reading your post "The Generosity of Bakers".
What an opportunity to meet people and see/learn about the breads they bake!
Thanks so much for 'reporting' for the benefit of those who couldn't be there.
:^) breadsong