Fun Times in France


I am a lucky person. I have friends all around the world, which can sometimes be sad (you can’t see everyone all of the time) but mostly it’s totally amazing.

Ma copine Didi shared her piece of France with me a few weekends ago. I got in my little car, the GPS proceeded to send me into the middle of Grenoble where I got terribly lost, but as a result ended up on a beautiful, windy country road en route to Chambèry in the Savoie region of France. For those of you that don’t know, this area would be considered the Alps. And the Alps are full of, well, mountains of course and all good things that come with that: melted cheese, chilly nights, insane hairpin turns, cows with cowbells ringing in the distance, flower boxes brimming with geraniums and stunning vistas.

 Home made aioli and tapenade to go with our crudités & brilliant Jouvaud baguette. 

Home made aioli and tapenade to go with our crudités & brilliant Jouvaud baguette. 

I stayed with Didi and her family at their charming home in Chambèry and we also spent one night in the ski resort town of Val d’Isère. It was beautiful. On the way there I simply had to get a ride in, so Charlotte (Didi’s daughter) and I hoofed it up a very BIG col, 40 kilometres of uphill at about 7-8% gradient and a total elevation gain of 1900 metres to the Cormet de Roselend. It was very cold by the time we reached the top, but the views we passed along the way were worth it, including riding through the gorgeous little village of Beaufort where indeed the famous cheese is made. It was so charming I wish we had stopped, but we were on a mission and a timeline to get to the top of this climb. We spent the rest of the weekend dining on fresh chanterelles which Didi’s husband foraged for himself, wild blueberries, cheeses and plenty of good wine.

Just this past week I was fortunate to have my lovely friend Tara from Ireland come to visit me. As usual, because she loves food as much as I do, we sat down and mapped out the incredibly important things we had to do while she was here: mostly what and where to eat and drink. This included going back to our favourite terrace in Avignon for a glass of champagne and a delightful lunch, hitting Chez Serge for some truffle-inspired food and spending most evenings revelling in the delicious treats we found throughout our days. Sadly the mistral was a-blowing the entire time, but we sat in the sunshine whenever we could.

There is nothing finer than sharing moments with wonderful friends and creating memories for a lifetime. So thank you ladies for letting me visit and being visited. Bisous, bisous!