Michel Baudouin



What is your favorite part of being a restaurant owner in Asheville

As a restaurateur, the access to farms. As business man, the relationship that exist with organizations like the CVB who understand how small businesses are just as important as larger businesses.  As a resident, how all social classes blend nicely together versus many other places. And of course, the landscape.

What is the background of your restaurant’s name?

I am from Vienne few miles south of Lyon. In Lyon, we call our mom & pop bistros “Bouchon.” Since we offer everyday French food as they do, I thought it was appropriate. Also, there is a very interesting story how Bouchon were made famous. After an economy down turn, wealthy residence let go of their cooks. Most were women and several such as La Mere Brazier and La Mere Blanc started to open their own kitchens to the residents. Well-known chefs have come up from such bistros. Paul Bocuse did his apprenticeship at La Mere Brazier et Georges Blanc famous Auberge in Vonnas, he is the son of La Mere Blanc. Today, many of these bistros are several generation-owned and remain a staple of Lyon’s food culture.

What ingredient could you not live without?


What’s your favorite form of cooking?

Braising in fall and winter and grilling in spring and summer. But, sauté I can do with my eyes closed.

Why did you choose Asheville to open your restaurant?

 Redundant I know, but it was a quality of life move.

What is your favorite chef’s tool and why?

A sharp knife. Cooking would be limited without and you don’t feel it when you miss-handle it. Just a nice clean cut!!