UPDATE: Eric Weistroffer, Executive Director for JBI, LLC. has reached out with a statement clarifying that both Chefs de France and Monsieur Paul are expected to reopen, but no official reopening date is known as of yet. You can read the update, which includes an exciting note on the upcoming Creperie de Paris restaurant, by clicking here.
The culinary team of EPCOT’s France Pavilion is saying goodbye to a pillar of the World Showcase pavilion, Executive Chef Bruno Vrignon, who has officially announced his retirement after 38 years, according to a report by Scott Joseph of the Orlando Restaurant Guide.
Vrignon has been a chef at the France Pavilion since it opened in 1982. Previously, he had worked at Restaurant Paul Bocuse—the two main restaurants at EPCOT, Chefs de France and Monsieur Paul, are operated by Jerôme Bocuse, son of the celebrated late master chef. With no post-retirement plans, Chef Vrignon plans to stay in the area. No replacement has been named as of yet.
With the Disney Cultural Representative program temporarily suspended until further notice, Eric Weistroffer, Executive Director for JBI, LLC. has stated that he’s unsure if the restaurants can reopen in the first place, given that most French staff members and all servers have returned home. Attendance numbers have been insufficient to reopen all culinary operations or bring back furloughed staff.
Hopefully, we’ll see more of an impetus to revitalize the France Pavilion upon the grand opening of its long-awaited expansion and Remy’s Ratatouille Adventure.