Talented Baker Scores a Hat-Trick Winning Best French Traditional Baguette 

Talented Baker Scores a Hat-Trick Winning Best French Traditional Baguette 

Anyone looking to taste the best French traditional baguette in Hérault, and the fourth best baguette in France, should look no further than Le Petit Talemelier, rue Malika Mokeddem in Jacou, Occitanie. 

The owner, baker Estebann Pires has won the prestigious accolade three times in a row, voted for by the Chamber of Trades and Crafts and was entered into the National competition where he took fourth place in Paris in May this year. The winner was Ludovic Desoeuvres, from La Fournée des Fables bakery in Château-Thierry, Aisne, Hauts-de-France. 

The local competition was organised by the CFA (Centre de Formation d’Apprentis) Nicolas Albano, a professional training association in Sète and The National Confederation of French Bakery and Bakery-Pastry (CNBPF), alongside CGAD (La Confédération Générale de l’Alimentation) Hérault. The second prize went to Myriam and Vincent Bakery in Riols and third prize to Gourmandise and Tradition in Beaulieu.

Estebann receives his prize

Estebann holds a Bakery CAP (Certificat d’Aptitude Professionnelle) and a Bakery BP (Brevet Professionel). He completed his training at the prestigious Compagnons du Devoir et du Tour de France, a French organisation of craftsmen and artisans, which involves gaining experience by working at different bakeries across the country. 

“I’m delighted to have won the prize for Best French Traditional Baguette in Hérault three years in a row and proud to be on the judging panel next year. After seven years working in different bakeries across France, as part of my Compagnons du Devoir training, I was excited to open my own artisanal bakery in Jacou four years ago. It was a real passion to open my own business and create my own products,” he said. 

The manufacture of the traditional baguette is protected by law, and must only be made of wheat flour, water, salt, yeast and sourdough. 


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Une publication partagée par CNBPF (@confederation_boulangerie)

The competition brings together the best bakers from each region in France, following two rounds; the qualifications, and then the grand final, where the best six compete for the title, where each baker had to produce 40 traditional French baguettes, on the forecourt of Notre-Dame Cathedral in six hours, meeting different criteria. 

Alongside Ludovic Desoeuvres, who took first place, the other winners were, in 2nd place, Florian Petit-Grégoire, from Chavagnes-en-Paillers, Vendée (Pays-de-la-Loire), in 3rd place, Guillaume Beton, from Alixan, Drôme (Auvergne-Rhône-Alpes) and joint 4th Loïc Lacene, Estebann Pires and Maxime Serin. 

Follow Estebann on Facebook.


Lead photo credit : Estebann during the final stage of the competition

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Jenny Eagle has been a journalist for more than 20 years, writing for The Daily Mail, OK! magazine, The Sun, The Mirror, the Mail on Sunday, the Press Association and The Sunday Telegraph. Her career highlights include working with the European Union as a host and facilitator for the EU Citizens Dialogues for the UN Food Systems Summit in 2021. Jenny has lived and worked in Montpellier for 10 years and in her spare time writes travel articles for France Today, The Good Life France and Culture Trip.

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