Everything Gourmet

Going Gourmet with the Gauls Featuring a Gourmet Gazette Slide Show at the End of the Article

A kitchen in Ancient Gaul. Drawing © Héloïse Chochois Courtesy MuséoParc Alésia. Handout via The Gourmet Gazette

Steaming cauldrons and curing meats in the kitchens of the Ancient Gauls, vestiges of a fine repast including snails, oysters and duck bones found in a local cave, and a Roman banquet are all on hand in a delicious, gourmet and historical exhibition entitled in the Kitchens of Alésia that is unfolding at the MuséoParc Alésia in Burgundy. Alésia was where the chieftains of Gaul including Vercingétorix surrendered to the Romans in 52 B.C.

If you can’t come to France right now we bring this show to you from the countryside of Burgundy, still today a leading gastronomic region of France. On display are remarkable pieces of utensils and tableware of the times that were found in the region offering a glimpse into the table and tableware of the Gauls of Antiquity and the Gallo-Romans. Learn about a Gaulish banquet, a Roman banquet a storeroom and a kitchen.

A caldron, the centerpiece of a Gaulish kitchen. Conseil départemental de la Côte-d’Or, Musée Alésia, coll. Société des Sciences de Semur-en- Auxois © Dominique Geoffroy Courtesy MuséoParc Alésia. Handout via The Gourmet Gazette

The cauldron was the central accessory to the cooking of the Gauls and subsequently the Gallo-Romans. The average family of Gauls ate primality grains and legumes and small quantities of meat. This diet was diversified upon the arrival of the Romans into Gaul who brought new products emanating from the four corners of the Empire, like the olive. Although not a single written recipe has made it to the present from the times of the Gauls, diverse sources of information assist in reconstituting a typical menu. You can find delicious, easy to follow recipes for sesame crackers, spiced and sweetened wine and bread flavored with ewe’s milk on the museum’s French version of the website.

The show was conceived and put together by the MuséoParc Alésia, in collaboration with the Development Team of the Site of Alésia, the Council of the Department Côte-d’Or and the Scientific intervention of Fabienne Creuzenet, engineer in archeological studies at the University of Burgundy.

Gods from the time of the Gauls holding cornucopia, a symbol of abundance. Conseil départemental de la Côte-d’Or, Musée Alésia, coll. Société des Sciences de Semur-en-Auxois © Dominique Geoffroy Courtesy MuséoParc Alésia. Handout via The Gourmet Gazette

Meanwhile you can also explore the Gallo-Roman ruins at the park, an educational trail where you can discover the conquests of the Roman army, how the Chieftains of Gaul revolted, the clash of the armies and the siege of Alesia and Caesar’s ultimate victory. The significance of the archeological findings at the site and the myths of the Gaul complement the visit while maps, films, displays, scale models and multi-media displays round out the visit. Near the Gallo-Roman ruins is a monumental statue of Vercingetorix, the king and chieftain of the Arverni tribe of the Gauls and who headed up the resistance to Jules Caesar.
©The Gourmet Gazette
The show is on through December 30th
Enjoy a virtual visit at http://www.alesia.com

The Going Gourmet with the Gauls Slide Show

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