French president's chef says adieu


PARIS (AP) — France's presidential chef is retiring after four decades of culinary service, having fed five French presidents and peppered the steaks tartare of some of the world's most powerful leaders.

Sixty-year-old Bernard Vaussion was filled with emotion while cooking his last lunch for the President Francois Hollande Thursday at the Elysee Palace — a farewell meal that included raspberry millefeuille. Hollande has a well-known sweet tooth.

Vaussion said that over the years the most important skills for the job — besides cooking — was the ability to adapt to the tastes of each leader.

Francois Mitterrand loved seafood, Jacques Chirac preferred snails and sauerkraut, and Nicolas Sarkozy caused a stink by rejecting French gastronomy for healthier foods.

Vaussion's deputy, Guillaume Gomez, succeeds to the top job.

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