From croissants to Dior, Brits list top 15 most admired French exports

The best French exports include croissants, baguettes - and cheese, according to research.

 A poll of 2,000 adults found macarons, Monet and Coco Chanel also made the top 15 list as the nation's culture, cuisine and fashion were among the things Brits admire most. 

With 76 per cent saying they’d love to experience a taste of French living. 

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But the UK’s growing appetite for French culture extends beyond delicious food (30 per cent), café terraces (28 per cent) and communal dining (25 per cent) - for a fifth it’s the ‘joie de vivre’ that French living epitomises. 

It also emerged the Eiffel Tower, Palace of Versailles, and Lavender Fields in Provence were the top three French landmarks those polled would most like to visit. 

Bringing a taste of France to Britain with these Moules FritesBringing a taste of France to Britain with these Moules Frites
Bringing a taste of France to Britain with these Moules Frites | Debby Lewis-Harrison

The true essence of French culture

To bring a taste of France to Britain, Boursin, which commissioned the research, has partnered with Great British Bake-Off star and French chef, Manon Lagrève for an immersive five course dining experience set in a lavender field in Kent - encapsulating the beauty of rural Provence. 

Manon Lagrève said: “There are so many wonderful things to appreciate about France, but shared moments over food and the conviviality of dining is where the true essence of French culture comes alive. 

“To mark this, I have created a series of Boursin-based recipes inspired by my French upbringing, and recent road trip around the different regions of France.” 

Contrary to any rivalry between the nations, the study found 63 per cent of Brits believe the French to be more stylish, while 53 per cent think they have a more sophisticated palate when it comes to food. 

And 26 per cent think the sound of someone speaking French is more romantic than the English accent, ranking second only to Italian.

While the average Brit predicts they use French words like 'oui' and 'bonjour' three times a week in conversation, with 58 per cent wishing they could speak it fluently. 

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According to OnePoll research,  having a rich history and culture, our love of football, and a passion for good food were the top things that united our two great nationsAccording to OnePoll research,  having a rich history and culture, our love of football, and a passion for good food were the top things that united our two great nations
According to OnePoll research, having a rich history and culture, our love of football, and a passion for good food were the top things that united our two great nations | Joe Pepler/PinPep

Blending the two nations

It also found 71 per cent of Brits admire the French lifestyle, with many thinking they could do more to emulate French culture by embracing things like a better work life balance (42 per cent) and longer lunches (18 per cent). 

But 77 per cent consider French cuisine a treat, even more so when eating out, as 51 per cent hold their hosting skills in high regard. 

The research, carried out via OnePoll, also found that having a rich history and culture, our love of football, and a passion for good food were the top things that united our two great nations. 

A spokesperson for Boursin, which is also partnering with Côte Brasserie to bring a taste of the menu to those unable to attend the pop-up via the new Summer Specials during July and August, said: “France's charm lies in its ability to blend tradition and modernity, offering a rich cultural heritage, and natural beauty. 

“We want to celebrate the French way of life, the joy of sharing, the beauty of summer and the unmatched taste of France – and taking inspiration from this by fusing it with the best of British through exciting partnerships.”

The top 15 French exports

  1. Croissants
  2. Baguettes
  3. Cheese
  4. Wine
  5. Pain au chocolat
  6. Champagne
  7. Claude Monet
  8. Macarons
  9. Coco Chanel
  10. Dior
  11. Footballers
  12. Bistros
  13. Louis Vuitton
  14. French literature
  15. Cartier

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