Once again the French-American Chamber of Commerce is hosting the Beaujolais Nouveau celebration at the Intercontinental hotel in Buckhead. As in the past, the Nov 17 reunion will be fueled by the light-bodied wine made from recently picked Gamay grapes and sent from the Beaujolais region in France to the United States.
The models displaying dresses from Christian Dior collections will be there again as will the food stations of charcuterie, parisian ham and porc rillettes with a wide variety of cheeses prepared under the watchful eyes of the Intercontinental’s Executive Chef Joseph Trevino.
For the first time, however, Beaujolais Nouveau will highlight the vocal talent of Mamido Bomboko Souchu, who originally is from the Democratic Republic of the Congo, but has spent much of her singing career in the United States and France.
She moved to Atlanta with her husband, Karim Souchu, a former professional basketball player who is now coaching 3×3 basketball to local school teams and the French Olympic 3×3 team.
Mrs. Souchu has been singing in a wide variety of venues since she was a girl growing up in Kinshasa, the DRC’s capital, and later in Belgium and France. Her professional career today includes voice overs for films and radio stations, and has been featured in a wide range of advertisements including those of the Coca-Cola Co. and Volkswagen.
During an interview with Global Atlanta, she said that she also considers herself not only a singer but a songwriter as well, and has been working in New York on developing a Broadway show with musical numbers from Dreamgirls, West Side Story, Mamma Mia, and other musicals.
Her ability to cross U.S., French and African cultures provides her with a wide spectrum of musical sources that she displayed on the French version of “the Voice” where she competed and was selected as a finalist for her performance of Beyonce’s “Halo.”
In France she has worked with Pascal Obispo, whose name in an anagram of the artist Pablo Picasso and whose album sales generally clear 1 million copies, and Wyclef Jean, the Haitian rapper, musician and actor.
Beaujolais Nouveau also provides an opportunity for Mr. Trevino, the Intercontinental Buckhead’s executive chef who will be masterminding the assembly of foods, which he says will be carefully selected to pair with the wine.
Despite his Mexican and Spanish background and familiarity with the foods of those cultures, he acknowledges that France is at “the origin of culinary.”
His challenge for the Beaujolais celebration will be to match French tastes with those of the Southeast.
Given the popularity of the distinguished American chef, Charles Arthur “Art” Smith, who oversees the Intercontinental’s offerings and provides suggestions as to how to blend local homegrown produce with international gourmet tastes, Mr. Trevino doesn’t foresee any problem meeting everyone’s culinary desires.
Marie Laumont, the chamber’s executive director, tells Global Atlanta that her goal is to have 350 attendees at the celebration and she feels confident that number will register by Nov. 17 because she already has 60 percent of the goal signed up.
To register, click here.