Australia's prime minister said on Thursday his wife was "flattered and charmed" to be described by President Emmanuel Macron as "delicious," a compliment that has sparked lighthearted conjecture during the French leader's first official visit Down Under. Macron raised eyebrows Wednesday with his description of Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull's wife of 38 years, Lucy, during a Sydney press conference, per the AP. "I want to ... thank you and your delicious wife for your warm welcome," Macron told the prime minister. Turnbull showed no hint of offense when questioned Thursday about the remark. "Lucy was very flattered," Turnbull said. "She's asked me to say that she found the president's compliment as charming as it was memorable. ... President Macron charmed Australia. He certainly charmed all of us, all the Turnbulls."
Macron's comment spurred reaction on social media and in the Australian press amid speculation about his intent. Sydney's Daily Telegraph reported the comment on its front page under the headline "President Pepe Le Pew," likening Macron to the lovesick French skunk cartoon character. Some observers felt he may have been joking: The comment was made just before lunch, and he and Turnbull had made previous comments about food. Others felt he may simply have slipped up in his use of English, as the French word for "delicious"—"delicieux"—also means "delightful." The more mischievous may have even considered Macron's comment to possibly be a tongue-in-cheek reference to Trump's visit to Paris last year, when he was caught telling Macron's wife, Brigitte, that she was "in such great shape," before looking to her husband and saying, "Beautiful."