Let them eat cake: Versailles breaks into fancy foods
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The world-famous Palace of Versailles has unveiled a new line of gourmet produce, sweets and other French food meant to rival luxury brands Fauchon and Hédiard.
The Palace of Versailles – the former court of French kings and one of the most visited monuments on the planet – has launched its own brand of gourmet food, which it hopes to sell in high-end shops across the world.
“Château de Versailles Epicerie Fine” will market a wide variety of food products, including soups, sauces, fruit jams, sweets and foie gras, the famous chateau said in a press release on Wednesday.
The fancy produce is supposed to reflect the refined and even adventurous tastes of Louis XIV, who boasted a royal vegetable garden designed to be a "laboratory" of horticulture to provide his feasts with constant new flavours.
“Today, this taste for fine living, the know-how and values of [Versailles’ kitchens] have been perpetuated…” the chateau said of its brand.
The products will be available this month at some of Paris’ renowned luxury food shops, like Le Bon Marché and Lafayette Gourmet, and later sold internationally in boutiques and airports.
Versailles’ peas, chutneys, spices and other products were already available online via its own dedicated website.
Move over, Fauchon
For its venture, Versailles has partnered with the company Oh! Légumes Oubliés ("Oh! Forgotten Vegetables"). In the past, the French firm has worked as a subcontractor for gourmet retailer Hédiard, which – along with Fauchon – will be a direct competitor of the new brand.
The chateau reported that the food will be made from organically-grown fruits and vegetables.
Profits from the gourmet food brand are supposed to go toward the chateau’s numerous projects, such as restorations, acquisitions and cultural programmes.