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First few free days in France

Jess and I are finally free to explore a bit of France due to a break in our American village jobs!

France is beautiful, it is hard to deny. So far we have seen a small bit of Marseille, a good portion of Vienne, a little bit of Lyon, and are working on Aix-en-Provance. While the architecture is amazing and we have had some decent wine on the cheap; I have not had the eating experience that I was hoping for yet. As a matter of fact, it has been downright unimpressive. It really makes me appreciate Portland’s food scene.

Don’t get me wrong, I know there is amazing food here, but I have yet to try it. Strangely, I have come looking for Cognac, Bordeaux, Fois Gras, and amazing French comfort food and found only disappointment. In Lyon, the gastronomical¬† capital of France, I had one of the worst meals of my life. Thank god Jess was there, so the company was enough to save the night :)

I also had my first French crepe….not good at all. It was soggy and the chocolate was more like cheap syrup.

The cognac I got was okay, but they are so damned stingy on the pours and it is really expensive. Actually, this is a ridiculous thing about France…they make all these amazing spirits and they come in tiny little pours for way more than I would pay for an average pour in the States. Super frustrating!

Thus, I have decided that I will make every effort to get to the source of the things I want to consume: I will go to Bordeaux and drink until I find what I want. I will go to Cognac and taste until I am satisfied. I don’t know where the Fois Gras comes from, but I’m gonna go eat the hell out of it!

I’m still really hopeful…but at this point i’ll take a liege waffle and a fine Belgian beer over anything I’ve had in France food wise.

More to come; the eating shall continue…

About the Author : JonJon was a social worker, now he is a vagabond. The pay is the same.View all posts by Jon

6 Comments

  1. douglas dahl
    douglas dahlApril 1,13

    Jon, you and Jess are on the right track but the best food item in France is their bread and you have not mentioned it. And maybe their cheese. And their dining alfresco at tables street side. For the best wine, Modoc is where you can find it but it will be very expensive, Rothschild or Margaux. You are talking $100s+ for a bottle even in France. But I would think the local wine would be good also. Rhone wine can also be very good. Ask the locals what local wine is best and where to get the best, cheap food. I know locals have their streets and spots to avoid the tourists in Paris so probably same everywhere. Go where the locals go to entertain, not to eat lunch. Paris is best for truffle dishes but again only in the expensive restaurants. The sauces in France should be good also on dishes. I believe there are two styles in France, peasant food and elegant dining and you need to try both. Also the Tour de France shows many great castles along the route and pretty mountain villages you might try to find. Seems to me the Tour is coming soon. They just finished the Nice bike race. dad

  2. douglas dahl
    douglas dahlApril 1,13

    I was wrong. The Tour de France does not start until Jun 29 and finishes in Paris on Jul 21. You can Google 2013 Tour de France on the internet to see the route and dates if you are interested. The route is very, very crowded and people rent campers to park along side the route for a day or two so they can be next to the bike race. But the good side is you have time to visit the old route for the tour to see the mountain villages and castles if you want to now. They change the Tour route every year. This is the 100th year for the Tour de France so it should be spectacular, even without Lance Armstrong.
    dad

  3. douglas dahl
    douglas dahlApril 1,13

    typical American mistake. Modoc were American Indians. The French region is Medoc. And of course Bordeaux.
    dad

  4. Dagmar
    DagmarApril 2,13

    Oh dear, nothing beats a fine Belgian beer at the end (or before the end) of a day! Any chance to meet you two again soon, now as you’re back in Europe? Plenty of good beers to offer… We’re thinking of a Lyon weekend in June btw. Take care and good luck with the French kids!

    • Jess
      JessApril 2,13

      Hey there! Lyon in June could very well work – let’s keep in touch about it, we’d love to see you and hang out!

      • Dagmar
        DagmarApril 3,13

        That’s great! It’s the weekend 15/16 June we are looking at. Or at any other occassion when you feel like a Belgian beer…

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