Part 1: Julien and Inès’ internship at Vabret bakery
Back in 2013, I had the difficult task to select the two SYB graduates that would further their studies for one year in France before becoming the new generation of SYB bakery and pastry teachers. After Zhang Shuai and Jin Huizi were chosen, the whole SYB team worked together to bring that project to life: from raising the funds needed to arranging visa issues and teaching them about French culture… it was more than a year of hard work and we were all very excited to see them leave!
So when I moved back to France it was only natural for me to pay them a visit! After two months of intensive French studies at the CAVILAM school in Vichy, Zhang Shuai and Jin Huizi had moved to Aurillac in August 2014 for 7 months of studies at the EFBPA school. As Aurillac is famous for being France’s coldest city, I bravely chose to wait until March to visit them…
After a 6 hours road trip, I was all the happier to be greeted by two familiar smiling faces! We celebrated our reunion with delicious home-made Chinese food…paired with cheese and wine of course!
After an early 8pm bedtime, they woke up at 3am the following day to go to the bakery where they work as trainees. A routine for them, a challenge for me that I didn’t quite achieve…When I finally managed to join them at 6 am the whole team had been working for a few hours already, rows of pastries and piles of baguettes patiently waiting for the clients to arrive…
在路途颠簸6个小时后，终于见到了两张熟悉的笑脸，我是 多么高兴！我们用家常的中国美食庆祝此次团聚，而奶酪和 红酒也是少不了的！
当晚8点他们便休息了，因为第二天凌晨3点他们便要起身 前往实习的面包店。这对于他们来说已经习以为常，但对我 却是种挑战，而我也的确没赶上…当我最终于早晨6点到达 他们的工作地点，所有人已经工作几个小时了，一排排的糕 点还有一堆堆的长棍面包都已经在等待客人的到来…
Zhang Shuai and Jin Huizi were extremely lucky to be doing their internship at Vabret bakery, a shop founded by Christian Vabret, director of the EFBPA school and holder of the prestigious MOF title, the highest distinction for a baker!
张帅与金会子都十分幸运地能够在Vabret烘焙坊实习，这家面包房由EFBPA烘焙学校的校长Christian Vabret开办，并冠有MOF（MeilleurOuvrier de France 法国最佳手工业者奖。此奖项由法国总统颁发并承认其为法国的最高荣耀。）之名，这也是一项对烘焙师的最高荣誉！
Watching them at work, I could see that standards were high indeed but didn’t affect a very friendly work atmosphere. As Zhang Shuai said: “Everyone is extremely nice and patient with us here, and I’m always impressed by the great technique and savoir-faire that the bakers have developed thanks to their experience!” That day, while Zhang Shuai was shaping traditional French biscuits and croissants, Jin Huizi prepared fruit and lemon pies as well as a delicious looking mille-feuilles!
11 am marked the end of their last day of internship, and it was time for them to thank their chefs and colleagues for everything they had taught them.
On Sunday they took a well deserved rest, and Monday was their last day of class before their final exam…
SYB program advisor