ATTENDING THE GOURMAND AWARDS
Between November 15, 2010 and November 15, 2011, a total of 162 countries participated in the Awards. Gourmand had to open a new office dedicated to the increasing number of books with new computer systems, at Marqués de Urquijo, 6 in Madrid. The headquarters for the business stay at the permanent address, Pintor Rosales 50. The two offices are very close.
The winners by countries were announced December 15, 2011. These winners from 135 countries qualify for the “Best in the World” competiti¬on, thanks to the quality of their books. Winners were all contacted per¬sonally. They can buy the winner self adhesive sticker. They can order the winner certificate. They also receive a free invitation to the Awards Gala event on March 6, in Paris. The impact on Christmas sales of the winning books is immediate.
This year, we could publish the shortlist of finalists ahead of schedule, thanks to the hard work of the staff during Christmas and New Year and our new computer process. There are 283 finalists from 71 countries, with 4 finalists in each category. Two categories have more, “The Best Book of the Year” , and the “Best Sustainable Food Book” have twelve finalists each.
The list of finalists is in alphabetical order by coun¬try, within each category. All the finalists have the right to buy the “Best in the World Self Adhesive Sticker”. Last year, 80% of finalists registered for the event and there were 1250 guests.
Groups are usually limited to 5. All large size groups are allocated seats at the Balcony. The tickets are sent at the end of January.
THE BEST IN THE WORLD
The Folies Bergère theatre is the most histo¬rical Music Hall in Paris. Built at the end of the 19th Century, it is beau¬tifully decorated. It was made famous by Maurice Chevalier, Mistinguett, Josephine Baker. The Gourmand Best in the World are announced March 6, 2012, starting at 20H30. It is advised to eat before the event. It will last 2 1/2 hours, even though it will be shorter with 19 fewer categories. It will be followed by a champagne cocktail, with champagne Gosset and cognac Frapin. The event will be filmed by various televisions, including the China Food Network.
For each category, the 4 front covers are shown on the stage screen in the ranking order for Best in the World. Only the number one is called to the stage. If they are not present, the Best in the World certificate will be sent by mail.
The Best in the World 1, 2, 3, 4 all have the right to one free certificate. They have to pay for additional certificates. Best in the World 1, 2, 3, 4 all have the right to buy the Best in the World self adhesive sticker.
The number one winner, alone or with a group walks to the stage, with music and the applause of the audience. They recei¬ve the certificate on the stage, and they can make a short speech of less than 30 seconds. Usually two thirds of recipients just say one or two “Thank You” phrases, a few will have impacting phrases. They do not know before that they have won, and emotions are quite visible. Photos are taken after receiving the certificate.
There is no dress code, the rule is to be comfor¬table and elegant. There will be many photos and filming. National dress is encouraged, it is a perfect moment to be proudly showing the beautiful traditional dresses of many countries. Some guests are very elegant and innovative in striking party dress.
The list of winners is available the next day, and released to the media. Beyond the honours, the impact is huge on sales, and foreign rights deals. For some authors it can change their life, launching a new career. It is also great fun, with many meetings during the cham¬pagne party at the end. It is very international, with 28% of the guests last year coming from outside Europe, and some 50% from Europe outside France. The French are the first country group, with some 20% of the guests.
PARIS COOKBOOK FAIR
All the winners books are exhibited at Paris Cookbook Fair March 7-11,2012. They include the finalists and the other winners. For over ten years the books have been exhibited by categories. For the first time, the exhibition will be by continents, and countries, to show the incredible quality and diversity of the world production. The exhibits of Asia, Latin America and Africa will be a surprise for most guests.
Cookbooks are exhibited on the first floor of Le 104, next to the major publishers stands and the Rights Center. The wine books are exhibi¬ted downstairs in the big room with the Wine Pentathlon, a fantastic wine experience for both beginners and the best professionals.
All finalists qualify to register as VIP Professionals for Paris Cookbook Fair, which gives them a permanent 5 day entry pass for two persons , invitations to all events, a listing in the Yearbook and Catalogue. The cost is 350 Euros. It is the best way to prepare in advance for contacts and meetings. The Welcome Party is March 7 at 19H30 at Le 104, 5 rue Curial, 75019 Paris, by invitation only. Paris Cookbook Fair opens at 10 am on March 7, 2012.