A few highlights from the lunch at Nougatine:
One ever-popular topic for the chefs was the comparison of French and American ingredients. American foie gras came up short. "The fat goes out of it too fast," complained Flora Mikula, the celebrated chef behind Paris's Les Saveurs de Flora. "And the butter is... too watery. As for the cream — it's pasteurized. You have to watch out when you bake with it." The other chefs nodded. But were they worried at all about the race, in which the reputation of French organ meats would be on the line? "We need to eat lunch on Saturday," Mikula said. "No, we have to fast!" said another. "No, no, let's eat!" was the decisive reply. It was decided that they would go on a tour of Chinatown. Another bottle of wine was opened. "I expect to have a pretty good time," said Yves Camdeborde of the chic Le Comptoir. But it wasn't clear if he meant during the trip or the marathon.