Food is the heart and soul of French culture. Like the Italians, food takes a back seat to nothing. Eating is not a thing to do, but an event to languish over, relish and enjoy. It is the center of social behavior.
To put it simply, these folks know how to eat, what to eat, when to eat, and best of all are always looking for a reason to eat.
I kid around talking about 2 hour French lunches, but that isn't taken to lightly by folks over here. There seem to be serious reasons for 2 hour lunches. A business lunch is often two hours. It gives us time to eat and then talk. Don't want to mess with trying to eat and talk business at the same time. Sounds good to me. A celebration is another reason for a long lunch. You know, someone came back from vacation, or it's Monday, or I'm leaving town for a week. That's good enough for a two hour lunch.
Finally, there is the quintessential lunch referred to as a midi. A midi typically occurs on Sunday, and is not just a two hour lunch but an all day and often night serious eating event. People get together to eat, talk, drink some wine, eat, talk, etc. The other day, I noticed a midi occurring in my neighborhood and the participants had eaten themselves into oblivion. Only one of them could remain standing after eating so much, and he looked a little wobbly.