Remi Poisson, a young chocolate maker from Coutances has taken second place in a national competition with a ship that took 60 hours to make.
He has loved working with food all his life and has been encourage by his parents who own the Tournebride restaurant at Gratot, just outside Coutances. He began making cakes at the age of four and soon progressed onto other dishes and always went that extra mile. For example, if he made a plate of chips, it wasnâ€™t just any old chips; he used two types of potatoes to make it different.
The theme for this yearâ€™s competition was to depict the journey of a chocolate bean. He chose to make a chocolate sailing boat, complete with chocolate rigging and red and white coloured chocolate flags which won praise from the judges at the competition in Paris.
The boat is in the style of one of the merchant ships that would have been used by the Spaniards in the 16th century when the disembarked in Mexico and discovered the chocolate bean.
He explained that it took a total preparation time of 100 hours for his entry which also included fruits disguised at sushi and chocolate and caramel sweets with pommeau. â€˜I am Norman, after all,â€™ he said.
He began working with chocolate when he did his apprenticeship with Patrick Lemonnier in Coutances at the age of 15. Now, aged 22, he works with Jean-Yves Kermarec in Brest, across the border in Brittany.
â€˜Remi is the head of our team. He is very modest. When I was young we never could have achieved this level of work,â€™ said Mr Kermarec, who added that the man has a long career ahead of him.