The Good Life France

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My French Life is not all rosés

journalist in france
Hard work -chocolate tasting in Lille

I have had quite a few comments lately about not having to work hard as editor of this wonderful website you are reading –  this is of course not the case so I thought I would put the record straight!

I will start with my recent press trip to northern France:

On one of the nights I stayed in a stunning chateau, La Chartreuse in Gosnay, near Lens in the Nord, northern France (which by the way I cannot recommend highly enough – it is so beautiful):

1. The restaurant Le Robert II at the Chateau (my home!): Dinner consisted of:

Amuse bouche of crab and foie gras
Remoulade of “King Crab” with small vegetables from the garden, crystallized lemon, cumbava cream and Pyrénées caviar
Slab of rump steak Wagyu with summer truffles
Matured cheese with homemade walnut and raisin bread (from the most beautiful cheese board I’ve ever seen
Trolley of pastries from which I chose chocolate and nut gateau which was divine – chosen from a massive selection of gateaux on a triple-decker trolley!
Macarons and assorted chocolates and patisseries to go with coffee

journalist in france
Choosing from the cheeseboard – exhausting!

Now, I can hear you asking – where is the hard work in that? Mon Dieu – all that fork and knife lifting I tell you, it’s exhausting but I know that you expect me to do my best so – I finished it all!

2. The Bedroom: The bed was incredible, big and soft and made me feel like a princess. The windows overlooked acres of private woods, kitchen gardens and beehives. The sun shone on the champagne bottles on the terrace… BUT – I had to choose a pillow that suited my personal taste in terms of firmness from a huge choice, so an element of work non?

3. Chocolate shop Meert in Lille: It isn’t easy to describe how lovely this shop is – it is quite possibly the most beautiful I have ever seen. They have been making pastries, sweets and chocolate here since 1761 and I must tell you that much practice = deliciousness. You think that going to a chocolate shop like this is not hard work? Think again… one has to choose from so many – I almost had to have a lie down afterwards.

4. Cheese Shop Philip Olivier in Lens: one of the best cheese shops in the north, hundreds and hundreds of cheeses to choose from and when I went I had of course to try some of them. You cannot imagine how difficult it was, I had to sniff and chew my way through several cheeses… I was quite ready for a nap after such an effort.

5. Wine tasting – well where do I start – all those whites and reds – life is not all rosé you know, one has to open the bottle, lift it and pour, lift the glass and refill – I am quite tired at the very thought of it.

Anyway, I could go on and on but I know that you have got the picture now and are probably feeling quite fatigued yourself now that you know how hard it is to be a journalist in love with France and writing about it!

A bientôt

Janine

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