Drouant by Antoine Westermann - French cuisine, the chef's way French Cuisine, the Chef’s Way

This historical Parisian restaurant, founded in 1880, has been the headquarters of the famous Goncourt and Renaudot literary prizes since 1914. Antoine Westermann became owner and chef in 2006.

Here he expresses his take on French middle-class cuisine. Drouant celebrates the hors d’oeuvre tradition and uses only seasonal produce. The best of the best without fuss!

  • 1880 - Charles Drouant, an Alsatian, opens his bar and tobacco store at Place Gaillon - a concept that is very modern at the time.
  • He soon begins offering his clients beautiful oyster platters whose reputation would spread all over Paris. His brother, an oyster farmer in Brittany, organizes deliveries once a week.
  • During the period, the surrounding neighborhoods were in a development boom. This incites Charles Drouant to transform his establishment into a bistro. It quickly becomes a popular spot for artists (the Daudets, Renoir, Rodin, Pissaro...) and would be one of the great meeting places of Paris.
  • At the beginning of WWI, Charles Drouant was already preparing his successor. Jean, one of his four sons, would learn from the best establishments in England, Germany and America.
  • October 31, 1914, the 72nd meeting of the Académie Goncourt is held at Drouant.
  • He soon begins offering his clients beautiful oyster platters whose reputation would spread all over Paris. His brother, an oyster farmer in Brittany, organizes deliveries once a week.
  • During the period, the surrounding neighborhoods were in a development boom. This incites Charles Drouant to transform his establishment into a bistro. It quickly becomes a popular spot for artists (the Daudets, Renoir, Rodin, Pissaro...) and would be one of the great meeting places of Paris.
  • At the beginning of WWI, Charles Drouant was already preparing his successor. Jean, one of his four sons, would learn from the best establishments in England, Germany and America.
  • Jean Drouant's nephew, of the same name, runs the restaurant.
  • Jean Drouant sells the restaurant to Robert Pascal. Robert Pascal was hired at the Drouant as a commis and continued to work there for 40 years.
  • The group Cible (Mr Bansard) buys and renovates the restaurant. At the end of 1987 it passes the business to the group Elitair, led by Claude Douillard.
  • The Elior group, specializing in institutional catering, decides to adventure into the world of gastronomy and takes on the Drouant. With Chef Louis Grondard at the reigns, the restaurant receives first one, then two Michelin stars. A change in direction for the hospitality group brings Elior to let go of the Drouant, while holding on to Louis Grondard – who would continue to spread his culinary knowledge to the Elior teams.
  • January 2006 - Antoine Westermann, a 3 Michelin-starred chef at the Buerehiesel in Strasbourg, becomes chef and owner of the Drouant.
  • Like Jean Drouant, Antoine Westermann plays an active role in the development of his profession. From 1998 to 2001 he was president of the “Chambre Syndicale de la Haute Cuisine Française” (in the interest of unions in the culinary field) and he has been a member of CREA (Center for Food Research and Studies) since 1996.
  • Also like the Drouant family, Antoine Westermann is Alsatian, and he is related to the Drouant family by marriage.
  • 1900, First session of the Goncourt Academy
  • 1926 Lunch of Goncourt Academy member at Drouant, Paris
  • 19424 Journalist are waiting for the prize nomination in front of Drouant
  • 1945 : Colette became the first women member of the Goncourt Academy
  • 1945, Robert Merle win the Goncourt Prize for : Weekend a Zuydcoote
  • 1951, Julien Gracq refuse the prize
  • 1952, Press is waiting for the announcement
  • 1946, JJ Gauthier is awarded