Macrons, Bidens to Dine on Maine Lobster, Beef and Artisanal Cheeses at State Dinner

December 1, 2022 by Dan McCue
Macrons, Bidens to Dine on Maine Lobster, Beef and Artisanal Cheeses at State Dinner
(White House photo)

WASHINGTON — Guests attending the first state dinner of the Biden administration will dine on butter poached Maine lobster and Calotte of beef while being serenaded by New Orleans, Louisiana, native Jon Batiste, First Lady Dr. Jill Biden revealed during a press preview Wednesday afternoon.

The dinner, of course, is being held in honor of French President Emmanuel Macron and his wife Brigitte, who have been visiting Washington the past two days, and will be served in a candlelit pavilion set up on the South Lawn.

“My mother made every dinner a special occasion,” the first lady told reporters who had gathered in the State Dining Room for the preview. “I learned that setting a table can be an act of love — and once I had my own family, I did my best to keep that tradition alive.

“Our first State Dinner … will be no different. It’s an expression of welcome and friendship — a way to connect through a language that transcends words. And as each dish comes to the table, so too does the meaning behind it,” Biden said.


The overall design of the dinner was inspired by the shared colors of the two nations’ flags — red, white and blue — and their common values of liberty and democracy, equality and fellowship, the first lady said.

Each table will feature vivid red roses, the official flower of the nation’s capital, and blue delphiniums, alongside white irises, the official flower of France, “their intricate petals reflecting the interwoven history of our nations,” Biden said.

The roses, American Beauties, were originally bred in France and brought to the United States almost two centuries ago.

The Statue of Liberty, a gift of friendship from the people of France to the United States, will also play a role in the festivities, a rendering serving as a backdrop for the president’s toast and also as a feature in the menu programs.

Speaking of the president’s toast, it will be made with American sparkling wine served in French-made glasses.

Oak and other wood tones will set off the chairs and wall paneling of the pavilion, while the fleur-de-lis is woven into graphical elements in the room, mixed in with French, art-nouveau stained glass.


The menu, created by White House Executive Chef Cris Comerford, will feature: 

  • Butter poached Maine lobster.
  • American Osetra caviar.
  • Delicata squash raviolo.
  • Tarragon sauce.
  • Calotte of beef, shallot marmalade.
  • Triple-cooked butter potatoes.
  • Sunchoke and creamed watercress.
  • Red wine reduction.

In addition, there will be a course of American artisanal cheeses featuring three award winning cheeses:

  • Rogue River Blue, the 2019/2020 World Cheese Awards World Champion Gold made by Rogue Creamery with milk sourced from Grant Pass, Oregon. 
  • Cypress Grove Humboldt Fog, a soft ripened goat cheese, the 2022 World Cheese Bronze Medalist.
  • Deer Creek cheddar cheese from a small family run creamery in Sheboygan, Wisconsin.

After dinner White House Executive Pastry Chef Susie Morrison and her team will present the guests with orange chiffon cake, roasted pears with citrus sauce and crème fraîche ice cream.

The featured beverages will be a Newton Unfiltered Chardonnay “Napa Valley” 2018, an Anakota Cabernet Sauvignon “Knights Valley” 2019, and Roederer Estate Brut Rosé N/V.

As already mentioned, Jon Batiste, who in addition to being from New Orleans was also bandleader and musical director of “The Late Show with Stephen Colbert,” from 2015 to 2022, will provide the evening’s musical entertainment.

He will be accompanied by his father, Michael Batiste, and “The President’s Own” United States Marine Band, and the Army and Air Force Strolling Strings.

The State Dinner was produced with support from Fête, an event planning and design production firm led by founder Jung Lee.

“The journey of planning this event has been an unforgettable experience,” the first lady said. “I’ve had the chance to collaborate with truly brilliant individuals — especially Carlos Elizondo, our White House social secretary. So many people have worked for months to make this visit magical and meaningful — and I’m grateful for all of them.


“Our hope is that the end result will be a night that balances the beauty of our friendship with the seriousness of our purpose. And we hope that French citizens everywhere feel the warmth of our welcome,” Biden added.

Dan can be reached at [email protected] and @DanMcCue

A+
a-

In The News

Health

Voting

White House

January 27, 2023
by Dan McCue
President Confirms Jeff Zients Will Succeed Klain As Chief of Staff

WASHINGTON — President Joe Biden announced Friday morning that Jeff Zients, the administration’s former COVID-19 response coordinator, will assume the... Read More

WASHINGTON — President Joe Biden announced Friday morning that Jeff Zients, the administration’s former COVID-19 response coordinator, will assume the role of White House chief of staff next month. Ron Klain, who currently serves as the president’s chief of staff, is expected to leave the White... Read More

January 19, 2023
by Dan McCue
President Heads to Northern California to Survey Storm Damage

WASHINGTON — President Joe Biden is traveling to Northern California today to view the damage left by a series of... Read More

WASHINGTON — President Joe Biden is traveling to Northern California today to view the damage left by a series of “atmospheric rivers” that have battered the state’s coast for the past nine weeks. Biden left the White House aboard Marine One Thursday morning without taking questions... Read More

January 13, 2023
by Dan McCue
Biden to Deliver State of the Union Feb. 7

WASHINGTON — Invitation sent, invitation accepted. Minutes after House Speaker Kevin McCarthy, R-Calif., on Friday invited President Joe Biden to... Read More

WASHINGTON — Invitation sent, invitation accepted. Minutes after House Speaker Kevin McCarthy, R-Calif., on Friday invited President Joe Biden to deliver his annual State of the Union address before a joint session of Congress on Feb. 7, the president said he would be delighted. Though the... Read More

January 12, 2023
by Tom Ramstack
GOP Bill Seeks to Stop Alleged Social Media Censorship

WASHINGTON — House Republicans put more pressure on social media companies Thursday by introducing a bill that would block the... Read More

WASHINGTON — House Republicans put more pressure on social media companies Thursday by introducing a bill that would block the Biden administration from trying to remove certain kinds of information from their websites. Republicans who introduced the bill said they want to protect First Amendment rights.... Read More

Feds Propose 'Student Loan Safety Net' Alongside Forgiveness

WASHINGTON (AP) — The White House is moving forward with a proposal that would lower student debt payments for millions... Read More

WASHINGTON (AP) — The White House is moving forward with a proposal that would lower student debt payments for millions of Americans now and in the future, offering a new route to repay federal loans under far more generous terms. President Joe Biden announced the repayment... Read More

Biden, López Obrador, Trudeau Meet in Mexico City for Summit

MEXICO CITY (AP) — President Joe Biden, Mexican President Andrés Manuel López Obrador and Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau are... Read More

MEXICO CITY (AP) — President Joe Biden, Mexican President Andrés Manuel López Obrador and Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau are meeting for a series of talks on migration, trade and climate change on Tuesday as the three leaders try to mend tensions that have divided the continent.... Read More

News From The Well
scroll top