Famous and prestigious establishment, the Paul Bocuse Institute is at war with the son of the late chef, Jérôme. The latter claims a fee from the school located in Ecully in the Rhône, the amount of which is too high according to its director Dominique Giraudier who spoke to the Progress. If she does not pay, she could lose the right to bear the name of the figure of French gastronomy. This state-recognized culinary and hotel school has been called Bocuse for twenty years. The case should be tried in 2023 in court, after unsuccessful attempts at mediation.
“An agreement was signed in 2002 by Paul Bocuse and Gérard Pélisson, both involved in the creation and development of the school, which allowed the name to be used until 2037.“, said the director of the institute in Progress. He asserts that the school does not have the means to pay the sum claimed. In Le Figaro who investigated the case at length, he specifies: “We are proud to bear the Bocuse name. If it has to be removed, it will be reluctantly.” A position that surprises Jérôme Bocuse’s lawyer: “It’s an old story, which dates back to Paul Bocuse. Today Jérôme Bocuse is the guarantor of the name, of the memory that the name embodies and of respect for his father’s wishes in this regard. Today, justice will do its job.“
Jérôme Bocuse is firm, he believes that the Paul Bocuse Institute is overstepping his rights and damaging his father’s image by squandering his name and he has been trying to settle the matter for three years. “The values advocated by my father are betrayed. No one will steal his name from us. All his life, he told me how proud he was of it. With the other entities in Lyon that bear my father’s name, such as Les Halles Paul Bocuse and the Bocuse d’Or, everything is going very well”, he explains in the columns of Figaro. Something to worry the students and teachers of the Paul Bocuse Institute, but also the politicians. “I didn’t think it would go this far, sighs the mayor, Sebastien Michel (LR). In Lyon, consensus is a tradition. When subjects are of major interest for the territory, we find a compromise.” The words of Laurent Wauquiez, President of the Rhône-Alpes region, the words are even stronger, with regard to the influence of the Institute: “it’s a terrible mess.”
A complex but united family in the name of the father?
A war declared by a member of the complex Bocuse clan. Indeed, an assumed polygamist, the chef has built an atypical family, which he physically left in 2018 at the age of 91. He had married Raymonde Duvert and the couple will have a daughter, Françoise. She had three children (Candice, Stéphanie and Philippe) with her husband, the famous chocolate and pastry chef from Lyon, Jean-Jacques Bernachon. The second companion of Paul Bocuse, Raymone, is the mother of Jérôme, born in 1969 and whom the chef was able to recognize when his son was 18 years old. Following in his father’s footsteps, he became a cook and ran his father’s American restaurants, before becoming, from his armchair in Florida, the CEO of the Bocuse group in 2016. Parent of a boy, he chose to name him after his dad, Paul. Patricia Zizza is also one of the companions of the ace of the stoves and they lived together from 1971.
A complicated family tree but Françoise Bocuse’s son-in-law, Vincent Le Roux, is clear about his mother-in-law’s relationship with Paul Bocuse’s son: “She is 75 and he is 53. Today, it is a real family that has strengthened the ties. They also solidified the family home with cross-capital operationss.”