Friday, October 07, 2005

French Living

I went to France for two hours last night and didn't even leave Nottingham. We went to dinner with six of our friends to a lovely restaurant called French Living. As soon as we walked down the blue painted metal staircase I was flooded with the smell of France. As Proust can attest, there is nothing like the sense of smell to bring back vivid memories, and for the next two hours of lingering over an honestly prepared three course meal, speaking French with the staff (everyone who works there is French), having a never empty glass of wine, and cheeky conversation with our English friends, I felt like I was back on rue Mouffetard in Paris, having dinner at one of our favorite musty French restaurants that is always filled with more anglophone tourists than real Frogs. I turned to Stephane mid-meal and we both joined in a collective sigh of "ahh, Home".

You can check out the restaurant Here

For those of you interested, I had the Crottin Chaud for a starter (warm goat's cheese salad). The salad was delicious and almost as good as the best Crottin Chaud in the world, but that title is still held by my friend J.C (that's Jean-Claude, not Jesus Christ). My main course was Chevreuil aux Myrtilles (venison with a blueberry sauce). This was accompanied by a gratin dauphinois and some of the best cooked vegetables I have ever tasted. The venison was succulent and perfectly cooked, just the right amount of pink. Small cheese platter and salad along with an espresso finished me off.

I haven't eaten so decadently in a while and I was thankfull for having gone to the gym a few hours before to make room for all that food.


Donny B said...

I love the picture and that restaurant sounds so good. I looked at the menu...venison with blueberry sauce...good choice. I'm starving just thinking about it. I think I might have tried the Cassoulet Toulousain.

Why do I love stories about food so much?

Lauren said...

my friend had the casoulet and it was delicious, smoky and hearty, a great dish for winter.

stacey said...

Oh you make me excited. I'm off to my local French dining establishment tonight in fact, where the whole staff is French: Le Sans Souci. It is a taste experience. I got the most amazing steak au poivre a while back that came w/ the perfect fries. but b/c my steak had no sauce, i asked for ketchup (mind you, if my steak was doused in any sort of amazing sauce that would be even better). The man looked at me in horror: mais no! dees ees a freeench rest-au-rante. we do no have kedzup. i weel check mais, no... about 20 min later i was given a thumb-sized container of kedzup. i am afraid to know where it came from and have never asked for it since.

Danielle said...

Sounds charming and delicious. I had a frozen lean cuisine. Chicken cubes with an exotic BBQ sauce. Don't know which part of the chicken is "cubes."

Melanie said...

Mon dieu, que j'adore le chèvre!

It was the best thing about living in the Loire Valley. Well, almost the best...but you get my drift.

Ste. Maure de Touraine is the best chèvre ever!

J'suis jalouse!

(replied to your comment in my blog, btw)

Lauren said...

Oh, I wish you could have tried my friend's Chevre Chaud. He use to have a restaurant in Paris on rue Mouffetard and his Crottin was orgasmic. None of this flat chevre from franprix, but giant warm nuggets of cheese. I'm salivating. Must stop.

stacey said...

mmm lauren you'll love: was going to get the chevre chaud in honor of you but went for endive salade instead. then, moules frittes. and poire belle helene to finish. agreat mouscadet as well. and now, i am friends w/ chef gabriel (who joined the ladies for drinks afterward). i do invite you to le sans souci when you're living in the east village, but it does require you to leave the borough.