Stay in  contact with Martinn:

A Sawday's Special Place to Stay

Sun

22

Jul

2012

July blog

So many things and yet not the end of the month.

 

First, celebrated my birthday and Act I on buying my own nest.

 

Then a week in my former town of Sèvres, celebrating retirement parties, reacquainting with friends and local restaurants, chatting a lot with Marie my dear friend who translates books from English into French for Flammarion.

Discussing with dear artist friend Nathalie Domingo, ceramist and see how we could work together : beautiful food in amazing ceramic containers or more likely amazing decors (available to buy) on the table. Stay tuned...

Went to Ville d'Avray to have lunch with my friends Cora and Nadine. We went to the Moroccan restaurant next door.

I bought a nice brown linen vest from Cora who owns a shop, Aspuces,  in Ville d'Avray.

 

Spent an afternoon with Anne-Claire my  architect and artist friend to draw plans for my nest-to-be. I have to be realistic : most of my furniture won't fit ! So a lot is for sale ... Anyone interested ?  a link to the Picasa album with the essential. There will be a lot more ...

 

 

Then Graduation 4-day break in London. If weather was Londoner, (but to be honest it was the same in Paris), all the rest went fine or almost.

 

We stayed in Shoreditch at an airB&B apartment.

The owner was kind but I would never dare renting my apartment in such poor condition and for such tariff ! 2 small moldy showers with only one toilet for 5, bad beds, no bedside lamps, mismatched towels that we found in the washing machine, mismatched furniture without charm… We did not mind too much as we were out all the time but the tariff for such a place is outrageous.

It worked as an excellent location for us, as Arthur’s former apartment and friends are in Bethnal Green, and we wanted to walk to some good restaurants. I enjoyed the Pakistanis Brick Lane with antiques, clothing, restaurants and supermarkets, colorful and worldwide food and people.

I even found my tiffin boxes. Bought 2 for future pic- nick or breakfast deliveries.

 

Went to many small coffee shops with such a special British touch : mismatched furniture with a charming “assemblage”, relaxed, comfortable sofas and newspaper, Wi-Fi everywhere. A mix of country and old fashion with modern conveniences.

 

We enjoyed a brunch at Albion. We had authentic English food including porridge, cheese sandwich. I had a problem with my soft-boiled eggs that came first hard-boiled and then raw but the team was apologetic and gave us great cookies afterwards.  So they are forgiven and we'll go back for sure. I also said that next time, I would bring them the little plastic egg from Lakeland that I use all the time.

http://www.lakeland.co.uk/3158/Egg-Perfect

 

 

Went to Viajante, after visiting the Corner Room in February. The chef Nuno Mendes is from Portugal and worked, among other places, with El Bulli.

We ordered the 3-course meal that actually comes with 5 amuse-bouche and some petits- fours at the end.

Everything was delicious but each recipe had too many ingredients. (One that came back quite often is the powdered grilled chicken skin). If final taste and texture were interesting, I think it is too complicated. I also found the décor and service quite formal. So I would recommend it as an experience, a good one, but it is not on my top list.

 

 

On the opposite, I loved Murano, on Graduation evening. Excellent without fuss, gentle, warm service from everybody including the owner Angela Hartnett. Italian inspired cuisine with a flexible menu. It is a must ! We were all happy, everyone contented his taste buds.

 

Then back in Ile de France. Spent a wonderful week with friends in Bougival.

Peaceful house, full of good vibrations.

They trusted me to prepare a buffet for a 7-people lunch. The Summery buffet was welcome on a finally sunny Wednesday. .

I prepared a tomato and pepper gazpacho, a tomato, mustard and cheese quiche with homemade thyme dough. We had a strawberry and tomato salad with some balsamic vinegar and pistachio oil, some carrot and orange salad with honey and ginger.

A lamb lettuce salad with grapefruit, salmon eggs, smoked and poached salmon, dressing with mustard, honey and pastis, we had a coronation chicken salad followed by a tray of cheeses from UK with some tasty fig crackers from Albion.

A red berries salad with lemon cookies to end the meal, with coffee, tea. Much chatting and laughter, and many smiles. A memorable day. Thank you Diane and Daniel.

 

On Thursday, spent the day in Le Marais with Diane.

Started at Musée Carnavalet holding a photo exhibition by Adget.

Very interesting ; Paris looked so gloomy not so long ago ! So many trendy areas looked like country landscapes or grey buildings. It is a game to try to recognize some of the Paris of today in some of these photos.

 We had a Mediterranean lunch at Marianne rue des Rosiers/Hospitalières St Gervais

 And then walked to Musée de la Chasse et de la Nature, rue des Archives.

 Arthur had recommended it but Diane does not like hunting and Taxidermy at all. So I was not sure this was such a good idea.

We found a very nice building, interesting and eclectic collections of antique cabinets, china, paintings. We also enjoyed an extremely gentle team, ready to explain, to show you the discreet mouse hole and cat paws.

 

Friday had lunch at Fée Nature : love the vegetable casseroles and kasha dish.

http://www.guide-restaurant-bio.com/restaurants-paris/restaurant-bio-fee-nature,759.php

 

Saturday had a nice, healthy and nutritious salad at Adele’s family.

 

Today went to the market rue Montmartre and finally got to cook my lunch !

 

Sounds like a lot of meals and food ? !

yes but I managed to respect some essential rules when you are on a diet :  mostly vegetables and fish, some fruits, no alcohol,  no sugar, no fried food, a minimum of fat and starch, small quantities, eat slowly and enjoy what I eat.

 

Bon appétit.