The one thing you didn't know about The Queen's menu

Tout le monde à table!

Kate Thomas

From what food is banned at the royal dinner table to The Queen's daily diet, we're fascinated by what goes on behind closed doors at Buckingham Palace.

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But there's one thing royal fans might be surprised to learn – Queen Elizabeth's menus are usually written in French!

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Former royal chef Darren McGrady – who cooked for the Queen, Prince Philip, Princess Diana, Prince William and Prince Harry – previously revealed he would present the monarch with a red leather-bound book full of recipes written in French for her to choose from.

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He told HELLO!: "We prepared the menus three days ahead so we could get the food in. The chefs would pick the menus and she would put a line through the ones she didn't want."


The Queen's menu is usually written in French

When the Queen is hosting guests, the menu presented to visitors is usually in French too, according to Prince Charles's former butler Grant Harrold. Remember Charles and Diana's lavish 1981 wedding menu?

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"If the Queen hosts a dinner at Buckingham Palace, the menu is normally in French", Grant told The Huffington Post.

"When she and the Duke hosted dinner following the wedding of the Prince and Princess of Wales, it was done in their style, with the menus in French."


The Queen's daily menus are presented in a red leather-bound book

Why French, though? It's well known that Her Majesty is fluent in French and she has surprised fans with her effortless pronunciation on many occasions.

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However, the tradition has actually been in place since the Norman conquests of the 11th Century when French became the official language of the court.

Food anthropologist Kaori O’Connor told The Huffington Post the royal family may have kept this in place because of the respect French cuisine still commands around the world to this day. It seems the tradition has stuck!


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One memorable time the menu's language changed was in 2005. According to The Telegraph, the Queen broke with tradition when she hosted the International Olympic Committee, presenting them with English menus featuring traditional British dishes and homegrown wines in a bid to host the Olympics in London.

Who knew there was such a rich history behind the royal menu?

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