The Toques Blanches Lyonnaises in an organization that brings together head chefs and pastry chefs who hold shared ideals. As custodians of the culinary traditions of Lyon, our members keep our traditions alive across the gastronomy scene from the mâchon, to the Mères (women chefs), bouchons, the Halles de Lyon and Michelin-starred master chefs – all members are committed to great food, and promoting our city’s cuisine and regional produce.
The Toques Blanches Lyonnaises was born of the interwar period, when a fellowship of master chefs was founded to protect the interests of the profession and to promote the culinary arts of our city.
With the impetus of Marius Vettard, the renowned chef at the Café du Pont, the association came into being in 1936 with the founding of the Amicale des Toques Blanches Lyonnaises et de la région. All seven founding members were major figures on the gastronomy scene in Lyon (Marius Vettard, Jean Vignard, Marcel Thibaud, Albert Mennweg, Joannès Nandron, Claude Maret and Edmond Lafoy).
From the start, these pioneering visionaries earned their reputation as custodians of our culinary traditions and demonstrated their desire to promote our values on the world stage. Over the decades, many chefs have rallied to the cause, including Paul Bocuse, Roger Borgeot, Gérard Nandron, Alain Chapel, Pierre Orsi, Jacky Marguin and Jean-Paul Lacombe. In 1978, when the ‘Amicale’ became an association, sixty chefs had already joined the ranks. Mère Léa (Léa Bidaut at La Voûte) was the first woman to gain entry to the institution.
In the spirit of friendship and collegiality, the association has worked tirelessly to uphold Lyon’s reputation for gastronomy. Instituted in 2008, the Trophées de la Gastronomie et des Vins, amply illustrate skilful stewardship by a new generation of chefs: Christophe Marguin, Joseph Viola, Mathieu Viannay, Guy Lassausaie, etc. Today, with 110 members, we can safely say that the best is yet to come for the Toques Blanches Lyonnaises!