Thierry Marx and Other Gascon Greats Invade New York

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For 25 years, DArtagnan has been the go-to for foie gras and more. Now theyre celebrating their quarter-of-a-century anniversary with Gascony Week, a blowout that makes our pants' buttons pop off just thinking about it. Some of the events are free (Gascon chefs playing rugby in the park!), others not so much ($600 gets you aboard an Armagnac-fueled bus that shuttles you from the restaurants of Boulud, Vongerichten, Keller, Humm, and Ripert, where theyll pair up with visiting Gascon chefs to serve you one course each). Check out the rundown of events below, and heres one dinner not mentioned in the press release: On February 20, Thierry Marx, the chef of Chateaux Cordeillan-Bages wine estate in Gironde, France, will bring his two-star brand of molecular gastronomy (think virtual sausage and liquid quiche Lorraine, per a Times profile) to the private dining room at Le Bernardin. Call 212-554-1515 for reservations if you have $350 (plus tax) to spare.

Wednesday, February 17, 3:45 p.m.

GREET THE GASCONS

Welcome the Gascons at JFK as they disembark from the Air France flight they commandeered to come to America. The party commences after they clear customs. Just look for 200 berets! OPEN TO THE PUBLIC, FREE

Thursday, February 18, 12:00 noon

BERETS, BAGUETTES AND LE BAND

Kicking off the week of events will be a reception and photo opportunity for the brash Gascons in the Meatpacking District. Live Gascon bands! DArtagnan finger foods! Come find out if Gascons really have more fun. OPEN TO THE PUBLIC, FREE

Thursday, February 18, 7:00 p.m.

JAMES BEARD HOUSE DINNER

Gascon chefs will contribute to an amazing dinner at the esteemed James Beard House, coordinated by NY-based Chef Pierre Landet of Le Cercle Rouge. Enjoy live music at the aperitif and during the course of the evening. Drink the best wines from the South West of France: Madiran, Gaillac, Gascogne, Pacherenc, Fronton, Saint-Mont, Jurançon and Cahors. Witness inductions into the Company of Musketeers of Armagnac, an ancient honor society founded by the real-life DArtagnan! OPEN TO THE PUBLIC, 80 seats available

Call 212-627-2308 or www.jamesbeard.org for tickets

Thursday, February 18, 9 p.m. -1 a.m.

CAHORS MALBEC LOUNGE

Join us for a tasting of Cahors wines and party as popes and princes have done for 2,000 years with a glass of Vin Noir. Ariane will be awarded the special Grand Ambassador of Cahors medal. INVITATION ONLY, PRESS ACCESS AVAILABLE Contact: erin@carbonniercommunications.com

ALL WEEK:

STAR POWER: NY RESTAURANTS WITH GASCON CHEFS

At restaurants around the city, guest Gascon chefs will contribute dishes to the regular menu. Chefs of Gascony include Philippe Combet«, Hélène Darroze««, Jean-Marie Gautier, M.O.F. ««, Thierry Marx««, Richard Poullain, Jacques & Laurent Pourcel««, Bernard Ramouneda, Eric Sampietro«, Michel Trama«««, Philippe Urraca, M.O.F., & Jean-Pierre Xiradakis.

Experience the life of a musketeer at these fine restaurants all week, with plates by the Gascon chefs, wines of South West France: (Fronton, Gaillac, Gascogne, Jurançon, Madiran, Pacherenc, Saint-Mont) and Cahors: Adour, Bar Boulud, Bar Tabac, Cercle Rouge, Daniel, David Burke Townhouse, Eleven Madison Park, Fishtail, Jean-Georges, Jules Bistro, Le Bernardin, Le Singe Vert, Mercer Kitchen, Per Se, South Gate

PRICES VARY, CHECK EACH RESTAURANT

Saturday, February 20

THE THREE MUSKETEERS OF ART

Meet three Gascon artists Michel Calvet, Nicole Peyrafitte and Jean-Pierre Rives whose works in three different disciplines will be on display at Dag Hammarskjold Plaza.

OPEN TO THE PUBLIC, PRESS ACCESS AVAILABLE

Sunday, February 21, 1:00 p.m.

RUGBY IN THE PARK

Come rain or snow, rugby players from the South West of France will match up against a New York team made up of some of our favorite chefs. Watch your hands, boys, some of these Gascons are retired professionals: Bonneval, Cadieu, Califano, Charvet, A. Costes, Debros, Jordana, Labit, D. Lacroix, N'Tamack, Portolan, Jean-Pierre Rives, Soulette, Tabaco, Tournaire & Verger. Some American footballers will join in the fray. OPEN TO THE PUBLIC, FREE

Sunday, February 21

THE THIRD HALF (Troisième Mi-Temps)

Post-game reception at the French Consulate under the patronage of Philippe Lalliot, Consul General, a rugby player himself. PRIVATE, PRESS ACCESS AVAILABLE

Sunday, February 21, 5:00 p.m. - 10:00 p.m.

THE 32-STAR DINNER: A Progressive Dining Experience

Internationally renowned chefs from both sides of the Atlantic, with an accumulation of 32 New York Times stars (¬) and Michelin stars («) among them, will prepare an extravagant feast in honor of DArtagnans 25th anniversary. The evening will begin with cocktails and hors doeuvre, after which you board our Armagnac-fueled bus and experience dinner as only DArtagnan could imagine it: legendary chefs of New York paired with the finest chefs of Gascony, each team dedicated to one course fusing the cuisine of both nations, each dish served in a different 4 star restaurant.

Cocktails and hors doeuvre with:

Philippe Combet, Le Château de Mercues, Cahors«
Richard Poullain, Le Château de Projan, Projan
Bernard Ramouneda, Le Florida, Castera-Verduzan
Eric Sampietro, La Table des Cordeliers, Condom «
Jean-Pierre Xiradakis, La Tupina, Bordeaux

Main Courses with:

Daniel Boulud¬¬¬¬with Jean-Marie Gautier, M.O.F. of Hotel du Palais, Biarritz ««
Jean-Georges Vongeritchen¬¬¬¬ with Michel Trama of Aubergade, Puymirol «««
Daniel Humm ¬¬¬¬with Jacques & Laurent Pourcel of Le Jardin des Sens, Montpellier ««
Thomas Keller¬¬¬¬ with Hélène Darroze of Restaurant Hélène Darroze, Paris ««
Eric Ripert¬¬¬¬with Thierry Marx of Cordeillan-Bages, Pauillac«« and Philippe Urraca, M.O.F.

Wines from the top vintages and reserves of Cahors, Madiran, Jurançon, St. Mont, and Château Lynch-Bages will be served. Trou Gascon Armagnac will be served on the bus between courses.

OPEN TO THE PUBLIC, TICKETS $600 at www.dartagnan.com

LIMITED SEATS, SPECIAL PRESS ACCESS FOR DESSERT & ARMAGNAC TOAST WITH ALL THE CHEFS

Monday, February 22, 6:00 p.m.

LA GRANDE FETE

Celebrate 25 years of delicious adventures with DArtagnan, with live music from our Gascon bands, French singer Michel Etcheverry and local band Evil Prince Ludwig (The Indestructible). Win best costume prizes, eat, drink wines from Cahors and the South West of France and dance like a true musketeer. Party like its 1699! BY INVITATION ONLY, PRESS ACCESS AVAILABLE

The Gascons Are Coming! [D'Artagnan]