Archive for ‘Food and Wine’

June 22, 2021

The Markets and a Garden of Paris!

And here I am cruising in my blog updating this wonderful memorable old posts, and again thanks for reading me since Nov 2010!! It has been a blast, and hope with the help of WordPress can continue the journey. This post will be on the black and white series, no pictures. Plenty of pics in the individual posts on those written on. The markets and a garden of Paris!!! Enjoy it as I.

And who would not come to Paris and do not visit a market day or garden? These visits for me is what Paris is all about ,more so than entering a building. This is real Paris , the eternal city of bustling people and beauty all around you. We will always have Paris. I like to bring up to date my previous posts on market and a garden. Why together well it rimes with from the gardens to the market to the table. And a lot more than just eating ok.

I know you might know, there are several gardens in Paris and I am sure we all have our favorite. Well for me this is the Jardin des Tuileries. (see posts) .Not only is historical, beautiful and stunning with a superb location ,but I also worked for several years in front of it practically on rue Castiglione. What better way to have a relaxing moment from work than to walked the garden , and then bring the family on weekends as well.

I like to give you once again a bit of history I like.

The jardin des Tuileries extends from the Louvre to the east to the place de la Concorde to the west and bordering on the north the rue de Rivoli, Place des Pyramides and on the south the Seine river. Lovely spot indeed.  The Arc du Carrousel built in 1806 in the jardin du Carrousel marks the entrance to the jardin des Tuileries as the Palais des Tuileries that enclosed the Louvre on the west side was burned down by the uprising commune in 1871 (later demolished by the city of Paris in 1881). Way back in 1519 king François Ier chose these lands that was occupied from the 12C by rooftiles factories (like those now on the roof of the Louvre still!). In 1553 Catherine de Médicis decided to lived in the Louvre and had a castle built, buying the lands of the Tuileries to do a park/garden Italian style with fountains, caves, greenhouse and petting zoo.  By 1664, Colbert ordered André Le Nôtre (the one of Versailles, Marly, Saint Cloud, Saint Germain) under King Louis XIV to designed the gardens. Of course, Monsieur Le Nôtre was born in the Tuileries ! and it was a work of him that attracted the attention of Catherine de Médicis to do the garden name after the rooftiles factories or Tuileries. You have in the gardens the museums of Jeu de Paume and Orangerie.  The metro Tuileries here on line 1 entrance along the garden on rue de Rivoli has two stairs with pockets in portrait style on the entrance and exit.

The city of Paris on the Jardin des Tuileries in French:

The Paris tourist office on the jardin des Tuileries in English:

Now, let me tell you about the markets of Paris; a must to visit, one several better. There are of all types and uses, and I like one that is not a popular tourist stop but it is a nice neighborhood of Passy in the 16 district of Paris. But, first let me tell you about some others I like. Please check times as these can change under the new world rules….

The market or Marché Saxe-Breteuil  with the best view of Paris. It is all along the Avenue de Saxe in the 7éme arrondissement and one of the particulars is that it has a wonderful view over to the Eiffel tower. The market is at Avenue de Saxe 7éme, Métro : Ségur,line 10. Open Thursdays and Saturdays from 7h to 14h30.

The market or Marché des Enfants Rouges, the oldest in Paris since 1615. Huge guinguette or party ambiance for this historical market lively, quality, authentic at 39 Rue de Bretagne, 3éme arrondissement  Métro Filles du calvaire, line 8. Open Tuesdays Wednesdays, Thursdays from  8h30 to 13h ,and 16h to 19h30; Fridays and Saturdays from 8h30 to 13h ,and  16h to 20h; Sundays from 8h30 to 14h

The market of Marché de Belleville, very cosmopolitan.  An not typical market located between the metro stations of  Ménilmontant and Belleville, offering food of first quality and fresh known for that. Another point is that you find many second hand products that went unsold of the huge Rungis central market at unbelievable prices. Located at  63 Boulevard de Belleville, 11éme , Métro line 2  Couronnes or Belleville also line 11.

The market or Marché d’Aligre, lively and friendly. One of the best in Paris but with a bit of disorder and for that Parisians love it. It is a symbol of the 12éme arrondissement located at 3 Place d’Aligre, 12éme  Métro line 8 Ledru-Rollin. Open every day except Mondays from 7h to 14h

The city of Paris on its markets:

Now, let me tell you about the Marché couvert de Passy (covered market of Passy). I go by here often when coming to Paris and even take walks around and that is how one day I found it, and becomes the nostalgic market for me when sneaking into Paris before the pandemic.

It is a huge structure  dating from the 1950’s with big metallic poles holding it. The shopping space is small  with maybe 20-30 merchants inside. All very quant lively and nicely decorated stalls such as the ones for Alain et Francine au Petit·Maraîcher (vegetables) , Les Galets d’Etretat (cookies) , Au Nicolas (goodies) etc.  We find everything here from butcher, charcutier , feather birds, rabbits, ready take out food, flower shop, pharmacy, with very high quality. At the end you find the fish market or Poissonnerie de Passy with a good reputation for good product, service and price even if a bit higher than elsewhere you get beautiful fishes and seafood here with tastings available!  There is a Portuguese corner and the produces from there like chouricos and cold cuts in a rustic quaint stall,and you could purchase the pottery from the country in blue and white. There is the cheese maker affinity  Androuet  and just wonderful selection even of English cheeses from the house of Paxton and Whitfield, supplier to the Queen of England in person !  And of course French cheeses from the country to watered your mouth ! I am already there lol!!  Located at  16,  Place de Passy  Tél. +33 (0) Metro line 9 La Muette just around my favorite Parisian resto La Gare!! even VTers  went there with me ::)  Open all year and from 8h to 19h. Closed Mondays, and closes between 13h-16h as well as Sundays afternoons. I just hope to find these people there when back in Paris after the pandemic.

The Paris tourist office on the Passy market in English:

There you go folks, hope you enjoy the ride on a wonderful part of visiting , living, rejoicing in Paris. Just the post makes me go and visit again!!! Enjoy the markets and a garden of Paris!!! And remember, happy travels, good health and many cheers to all!!!

June 21, 2021

A bit of Uganda for you!!

Another African experience, and there were several over the last 10 years in my travels around the world. This was another surprise This was taken when some Brazilians friends asked me to joined them there to secure business, and I was ready and willing to see this country of many contacts over the years ,and lucky to be able to catch up with one while there! Memories forever, the thrill of travel , and the joy of the world. Let me bring you a bit of Uganda for you!!

My blog as I have said is a way to keep up with the past and tell of the future. So on my last journey ,and my 80th country visited, I came to Uganda. A wonderful place of many friendly people all eager to improve themselves.

My journey as usual took me from Nantes Atlantique airport after getting there with my car. From Nantes I flew again to Paris CDG T2F and then change to Terminal 1 for a fly with Qatar Airways to first Doha (my first trip here too! ) and then Entebbe, Uganda. The return was easier on KLM from Entebbe to Amsterdam Schiphol airport and then again on KLM to Nantes Atlantique airport where my car was waiting for the return home. All done well except needed to change from AF to Qatar Airways which made me arrive five hours later to Entebbe.

Doha airport is very nice as usual in this part of the world, the airport is the highlight … huge super modern place with all the trimmings and easy to connect flights. The formal name of the airport is Hamad International,and the webpage:

From Doha I continue to Entebbe and here you are worlds apart; small, a bit rundown, and dirty and you need to get out of your car so they check on it , walk by and the driver will pick you up on the other side after you going thru a security check point. Once at the airport no sense in getting earlier as they put you on the side waiting room until your flight is call for departure; then you go outside again and come back thru the security check point to get back into the terminal… At least the people are very friendly. The webpage:

An unofficial Entebbe airport webpage on the airport with more useful information me think.



Once there, had a friendly transportation ride as it was a business trip to Kampala the capital even if has no airport.  Here I stayed first at the bit expensive but just to impressed me Le Petit Village actually of Belgian style and the price to match Europe. It is actually a village with accommodations ,pool, an inside bank, souvenir store, bar and light restaurant as well as a fancy one call le Chateau with again prices to match for visiting businesspeople like me. The overall place is very nice of course, worth it of its name. The webpage:



While passing by Entebbe saw a bit of the local street scene, and several malls such as Imperial Mall and Victoria Mall, very interesting and some crowded traffic jams as well as rain. The imperial Mall is a recent development for Uganda standards. The Victoria Mall is the largest in the country and looks very nice. I did not go into them. There is a nice multiple store with a shopping mall call Oasis in Kampala. It has several stores and even saw a KFC restaurant! I did stop here for coffee on the run between Kampala and going for Jinya.


I continue on the African road warrior tour from Kampala and doing some street scenes rides and tasting the local Nile Special beer, just yummy! I went on to Jinja another important city in Uganda,and right by the mouth of the mighty Nile river! In Jinja , I stayed at the nice and friendlyTwo Friends guest house, worth it good value location and services. Here we had dinner at the next doorAll Friends Restaurant. The webpage :



It is on a street bordered with tourist accommodation as Jinja is a popular place for tours of the Nile river which starts here around Lake Victoria. I got a personal ride but there are many rentals here such as this Speedway Safaris webpage with a bit more info on the Nile river mouth and cruises :

And of course , a bit more on Lake Victoria, simply amazing! More on a local recommended outfit,  Lake Victoria net webpage:

While in Jinja, I did my baptism on the Nile river , a big lake ,and I was here!!! Well having a jet ski waverunner and driver helps a lot but the views were spectacular and of course on the way back to harbor I fell in the water trying to go from the jet ski to a fishing boat; no big deal it was shallow and had floating jacket on, quickly out, just my clothes were soaked. An experience to remember for life. Wonderful place thought. And of course, saw no Nile crocodiles!!


As my time there covered a week and traveling back and forth from Kampala to Jinya ,I got me a different hotel for the last day and a half in Kampala, this was the MacKinnon Suites, very centrally located, rather nice building, impressive courtyad only the bedding was a bit well yellow.  The rest was fine with good friendly service and excellent facilities. webpage:



Coming thru Schiphol Amsterdam allow me for a quicker return and to did some shopping for Gouda cheese, and pepermint candies. The airport is an usual one for me with just one big boulevard Holland to walk by and shop and eat and drink.  I spent most of my time there at the Internet Centre and eating at the Oven pizzeria upper level.

Coming back landing at Roissy CDG Terminal 1 been there but is my worse terminal, been the oldest nothing like T2. You walk into the CDGVAL train connection to get you to Terminal 2 and the connections to Paris.

Finally, reach Nantes Atlantique is my favorite airport as it is so easy to use and very convenienent with a covered attach parking garage. The hotels are just across the street for a stayover about 300 meters.  Overall, a very pleasant trip and a new dot in my world map. Uganda know from many years before doing business there but never visit until now, as the saying goes better late than never. And I will be back….

I took many pictures but mostly personal ones; I have contacted the friends there to be on the lookout for this post. I like to take this opportunity to thanks them for their nice friendly welcome and great understanding. The beer, the coffee were great, and the people very friendly and safe place to be. Enjoy  the post on a bit about Uganda and Kampala/Jinya!!

And remember, happy travels, good health, and many cheers to all!!!

June 21, 2021

A wondeful experience in Lagos,Nigeria!!

I am thrill to update this older post on a wonderful experience in Lagos ,Nigeria. I have long done business with the country and encounter many friends from there , some still in touch. However, to my wonderful surprise I was asked to do an expat mission from France in Lagos Nigeria and it was a thrill to see these friends again in their country! This is the story I love to tell you ,and hope you enjoy it as I. For info , there are other posts.

A few years back, I had the opportunity to try a job experience that have been wonderful and several friends later and a blog post, would like to update.  While working for a French Oil support outfit, I was asked to trained the personnel on the Oracle accounting system set you there,and reports back to home office in France. I needed to move to Lagos, Nigeria for about 3 months!


The security was tight, I had a driver/car 24 hrs 7/7 and lived in a secure compound Somerset Court. More here in come to Nigeria webpage:

We had great shopping at Mega Plaza, Shoprite in the Palms Spring shopping center, and could go out a lot to restaurants and bars, especially the Federal Palace , Sofitel (now a mercure), and Eko hotel complexes.  The favorite links are here:

old Sofitel hotel (now a mercure!):
Federal Palace Hotel and Casino:

Eko Hotel:

Shoprite supermarket:

Palms Shopping Mall, home of Shoprite Facebook page:

Some of the favorite restaurants visited were!

Lagoon Indian cuisine restaurant:

Golden Gate Restaurant (Chinese) going down since I was there but for the memories:

Orchid House Thai local cuisine:

Sherlaton Indian restaurant:

Local Cuisine and very friendly one of my favorites there was Manuela (it had a  Cuban chef!) and a nice place to stay too if needed:

The experience was fulfilling and several friends still in touch, and the feeling that I trained them right and are still on post. On these spots in our world, it is not recommended to go with a family but for short periods I recommend the experience to anyone. The company has a revolving visa system where those on the dock worked 12 weeks and get 4 weeks off on rotation.

Now let me tell you a bit about the history of Lagos ,and Nigeria just a bit that I like.

Lagos or Èkó in the local language of Yoruba, the biggest city of Nigeria and Africa. Lagos is located in a group of several islands in a large lagoon protected from the Atlantic ocean and on the Gulf of Benin. The Portuguese were here in the 15C and named the city in reference to the Port of Lagos from which expeditions to Africa were done back in southern Portugal. It was conquered by the kingdom of Benin in the 15-16C and governed by kings and become a major center of the slave trade during the 18C. An anecdote ,here, the slaves brought to Cuba by Spain were from this area and the Yoruba language was carried with them there, now there are some traces of this and the few words I could remember served me well while in Lagos to the surprise of the locals. In 1861, the British founded a colony and name it Capital of the Protectorate of South Nigeria established in 1914. Lagos stayed as Capital at the moment of Independence of Nigeria in 1960. By 1967, it became a Federal State equal standing with the other 11 States of Nigeria. Later, for political reasons the capital was taken to a new city of Abuya but Lagos remains the economic heartbeat of the nation.

The best areas are east of city center at Ikoyi (where I lived), and Victoria Island. The district of Lagos Island is the business area with an artificial island named Eko Atlantic City.

The Lagos island is on a huge lagoon that goes into the Ogunau river by the Gulf of Benin. Several of these islands have been linked or attached to the continent as peninsula like Iddo Island or Victoria Island. The lagoon opens up to the Atlantic Ocean by a coastal line that extends to 100 km to the east and west of the mouth located near the city. The government decided to transfer the Capital to a new city call Abuja in 1976; this to slow down the growth of Lagos and for the most part to have a divided country without privileging the three main ethnic groups in the country.

There are several ferry lines between Lagos island and the continent managed by the Lagos State Ferry Services Corporation. webpage:

Lagos is served by the international airport Murtala Muhammed, (where I came in and out) one of the biggest in Africa and located in the suburbs of Ikeja. Webpage here:

The city of Lagos has one of the largest and most extensive road networks in West Africa with the notables Lagos–Ibadan Expressway and the Lagos–Abeokuta Expressway ,also serving as inter-state roads to Oyo and Ogun States. On the west you have the Lagos–Badagry Expressway serves outlying towns such as Festival Town. There is ,also, the Trans–West African Coastal Highway leaving the city as the Badagry Expressway to Benin and beyond as far as Dakar and Nouakchott, also, the Trans-Sahara Highway to Algers, Algeria leaving the city as the Lagos-Ibadan Expressway. The Lagos State has a bus rapid transit (BRT) system and Lagos Rail Mass Transit .  Bus Rapid Transit system, known publicly as ‘BRT,’ regulated by the Lagos State Government. They are also of two types, Blue and Red. The Red Buses ply major roads in Ajah, Ikeja, Iyana-Ipaja, Alagbado, which are majorly residential areas. The Blue Buses (which are air conditioned and better kept) travel from Ikorodu (a Lagos surburb) through Mile 12, the site of the largest food market in Lagos, through Fadeyi, Stadium (the location of the National Stadium in Surulere) to CMS (the location of the oldest church in Nigeria) and Tafawa Balewa Square (the arcade where Nigeria’s independence celebrations were held in 1960), which is the bus terminus.

The Lagos terminus trains webpage:

Three major bridges join the island to the mainland. They are the Carter Bridge which starts from Iddo, the Eko Bridge, and the Third Mainland Bridge, which passes through densely populated mainland suburbs to the Lagos Lagoon.

There are popular markets such as Idumota and Balogun Markets. The Bar and Lekki beaches and on the Atlantic side Elegushi and Alpha Beaches, and the museum of Black Heritage . More info here:

Other sites that can be visited are the Central Mosque, Glover Memorial Hall, Christ’s Church Cathedral and the Oba’s Palace (Iga Idunganran). Lagos Island’s Tinubu Square is a site of historical importance; it was here that the Amalgamation Ceremony that unified the North and South protectorate to form Nigeria took place in 1914. Ikoyi is connected to Victoria Island by the Falomo bridge, which carries a main road over Five Cowrie creek. Ikoyi, (where I stayed) also has a number of hotels, night clubs, a recreational park and one of Africa’s largest golf courses. Victoria Island with its annexe is situated to the south of Lagos Island, and it has expensive real estate properties and for that reason, many new luxury condos and apartments. Lagos,also has a number of private beach resorts including Inagbe Grand Beach Resort.

The hightlight of any night out is to have the local Suya (spicy shish kebab or spiced roasted beef) which is consumed in local clubs and bars with a bottle of cold pint beer, Star!! A unique experience to be remembered and always in good company!

Enjoy the momento and the pictures in this post and  see other posts on Lagos for more. An exotic experience that turns out a very nice memorable passing by Lagos,Nigeria.

And remember, happy travels, good health, and many cheers to all!!!

June 19, 2021

The coastal town of Ploemeur!!

And this is one of the nicest coastal town here for the off the beaten path traveler and road warrior like me. It is south of my home on the coastal Morbihan dept 56 of my lovely Bretagne! I will update this post again a wonderful past time I have tremendously enjoyed , and thank you for reading me since Nov 2010! Hope you enjoy the post as I.

So I will tell you today about Ploemeur a coastal town in my Morbihan very close to me. I have passed by there and done some wrap up on the Morbihan posts but never really walk around like yesterday. So much to see here and all wonderful I keep telling you ….::)  We did a homemade Paella!  from ingredients purchase at Ploemeur!!

We went off the N165 to Ploemeur and took a ride by the little airport that already receive big planes at about 9 km from Lorient (see post) and a mix use of civil and military. The naval base of Lann-Bihoué is here too since 1938.

There are some of the natural things to see in town or around it, I must say the Point de Talud and the Atlantic Wall (WWII) are very worth seeing. The beauty is to go along the coast on the D306 road and see the beaches such as Plage du Fort Bloqué ( 1 900 meters long), many menhirs or stones, and chapels, as well very nice quaint city center. Also, beaches at Kaolin, Peréllo, Port Fontaine,  Anse du Stole, Kerpape, Kerroch and Lomener. What most people at least in my area come here for ,are the beaches / plages in season of course. they are wonderful and if here around July-August they are very much worth visiting. Fort Bloqué built between 1747 and 1758 after the English invasion of 1746, and it was integrated into the fortification network defending Lorient. During WWII it was part of the Atlantic wall done by the Nazis. Fort Bloqué with the fortress right in front of you out to sea is very nice, as well as the  Kaolins.  Although with small children, the one at L’anse du stole in nearby village of Lomener is very nice too.



Ploemeur has a very picturesque city center with shops around the Place de l’Eglise and their main St Peter’s Church or église Saint Pierre.  Here the first known Church dates from 1037. The additional worth coming here, is that it is in the middle of the shopping area of Ploemeur with plenty to see, eat and buy lol!!!


The story of the Church square or Place de l’église is interesting. The Church  area was becoming small so in 1846 it was surrounded by a square , initially to be called Market square but then change to Church square. Early in the 20C a water pump was installed providing water to the residents . There is an original memorial to the fallen of WWI . In the 1950’s the area served as fruit stands were set up to direct sales to the public.  Renovations in 2005 took away the water pump and now there is a fountain set up there. The north side of the Church was destroyed by allied bombings in 1943, and rebuilt.

As we continue our walk, all around the St Peter’s Church ,we thinking of doing a paella what better way than to buy fresh ingredients from a coastal town on a reputable fish shop that everybody there seems to know each other!  This we did our fish whiting, shrimps, scallops, and clams!!! loaded home and now cooking ,can’t wait ::)  Ah the place Aux  Délices de l’Océan ! webpage:


And to complement, a bit over 50 meters we came to the other delicacy we cannot be without the chocolates so we shopped at Les Délices d’Anvers , stores at several places and known to us of very good Belgian chocolates (Anvers is the French way for Antwerpen, the Flemish). Here we got a 500 grams box and a stick of sweet dry fruits delicious  as always. Webpage look down Ploemeur


For the geographical curious the town of Ploemeur is surrounded by the towns of Lorient, Larmor-Plage, Guidel, and Quéven for which I have written posts before. It has 17 km or about 10 miles of sea front . The name comes from Breton language meaning a grand parish as in one time it was the largest in the area given away slowly to the other adjacent town as far back as 1925.  The town and area has great concentration of mineral kaolin still today.

The city of Ploemeur on St Peter’s Church

The city of Ploemeur on things to see in English:

The city of Ploemeur on the beaches in English:

My fav beach plages tv webpage in France on the beaches of Ploemeur

The Lorient Sud Bretagne tourist office on Fort Bloqué of Ploemeur in French:

The Lorient Sud Bretagne tourist office has more on this region and the town of Ploemeur in French:

Like , I said, we live very close and we do walks around these towns on the weekends when we are not away so far we have seen hundreds but many more hundreds to see lol! Ploemeur is one dandy we have come back to. Hope you enjoy the post and the beach town of Ploemeur!

And remember, happy travels, good health, and many cheers to all!!!

June 18, 2021

L’Armoric of Auray!!!

Ok so this is an odd post for me. I will briefly tell tou about a local bar restaurant! I had mentioned in between posts on Auray but reaally needs a post of its own. Therefore, let me tell you a bit more on L’Armoric bar restaurant of Auray!!!

On the port of Saint-Goustan in Auray, the L’Armoric bar restaurant opens its doors to you all year round. It, also, offers menus served for lunch and dinner at very good value for money as well as a cinema menu that includes admission to Ty Hanok Cinema!(Auray see post) The service, brasserie type, is pleasant and friendly.  As for the setting, it is charming with superb wooden staircase, exposed beams, and old English style displays. The L’Armoric also has a room upstairs, a large terrace and a bar side to extend your moment of relaxation!

We have come here since moving to the area back in 2011 and always fun. The L’Armoric bar restaurant is open for 45 years already a  small institution in the region ,it was renovated in 2009.


And just for an apéro or friendly drink to appease our sorry sort of going out we stop at old reliable L’Armoric, the best ambiance bar in Auray right by the river and next to the old stone bridge. Here we had some beers like the Breton Duchesse Anne (in honor of queen and duchess of Brittany Anne) and of course my gang had other beers and some croque-monsieur and croque-madame sandwiches of ham and cheese toasted. Just great for the home arrival, soft landing, easy living, after all this is France, la vie est belle, the joie de vivre, la vie en rose!!! yes indeed it is. You won’t go wrong here; remember this is at the port of St Goustan (see post) or lover town of Auray, very nice architecturally and huge historical of 3 countries: France, USA, and Canada.



The L’Armoric have a Facebook page here:

There you go a short post on an emblematic bar resto of wonderful historical Saint Goustan in the town of Auray. Enjoy the L’Armoric bar restaurant the place to be at the port. And remember, happy travels, good health, and many cheers to all!!!

June 17, 2021

More of Paris, do we ever stop !!!

An older post which gives me great pleasure in updating it. I was by Paris when an old friend of Real Madrid internet group we belong for several years finally made his way to Paris and just needed to see them in person. This was done and stayed a memorable moment in my life as well.  This is the brief story of that encounter.

Do we ever stop of seeing Paris? well, never, its a mouvable feast, eternal city of lights. Every opportunity is a welcome mat to civilisation, fun, history, architecture and specially the arts and culture we so much drank from it on each trip.

I was again by Paris yesterday, like so many posts before, (see Paris in my blog), the city never ceased to amazed me. More so because of a good friend from Algeria was coming over with his family and at least I had the opportunity to say hello , that is Paris the sublime meeting point of the world, or as Bogart used to say in Casablanca, We will always have Paris!!!

We had our drinks at La Terrasse resto on the place de l’école militaire, all there in the square is good and sublime.He came with chemist wife and small child from Alger, Algeria. As a fan of Real Madrid I guess he spoked Spanish too. It was a wonderful exchange of football, countries, jobs, the world. Memories forever.  The La Terrasse restaurant is a favorite of mine and not far from my world HQ office in Paris so it was a natural to meet there. A picture for friendship and good cheers!

paris-la-terrace-mohamed-Reis et-moi-madridista-argelia-mar14

This is La Terrasse webpage:

While in Paris, I had sublime 10 floor views of the city towards the Eiffel tower,and the Invalides Church. I walk around the Eiffel, and went around the école Militaire. Walking past Place Joffre you see of course still the Eiffel tower but also,a unique monument to Peace. This walking Paris is always good, and I did around these areas, walking in Paris is to live longer! I walked from my office to the restaurant above.

Of course, I came by TGV train from Auray to Montparnasse direct, as much as don’t like trains many times  I have no choice, I took the metro line 6 because it goes above ground on the way ok. However, on the way back, I took the wonderful bus 92 from place de l’école militaire to gare de Montparnasse , much better ride and wonderful Paris scènes ,above ground. I am still amazed at the number of visitors that insist on taking these trains, its like a tourist attraction lol!!! Then on the TGV from Montparnasse back home and  because of railroad tracks works after Rennes are under repairs, I have the distinct pleasure of taking the SNCF buses or cars. from the Gare de Rennes to Auray  in 2 hours! nice ride as it was very late but boy going out of a train station to go to a bus station this late at night almost midnight was not my cup of tea even in the smallist station like Rennes. I arrive well at my car  in Gare d’Auray for the last 15 minutes trip home.

There you go folks , jotted down in my blog for the memories of always and good cheers with good friends. Until we meet again, salut!! Hope you enjoy the brief event and do walk and walk in Paris. The La Terrasse is a great place to mingle and meet folks indeed. Again, hope you enjoy the event.

And remember, happy travels, good health, and many cheers to all!!!

June 17, 2021

Some news from France, CCCXXXVII

And back to the wonderful some news from France series now in its 337th edition thanks to your loyal reading over the years since Nov 2010. Let me tell what are the latest and now the restos/bars are open! Welcome to France!! Bienvenue! or as we say in my neck of the woods Degemer mat!

The world changes ! After weeks of rumors, the Plaza Athénée formalized  the appointment of Jean Imbert as head of its kitchens, to take over from Alain Ducasse. And maybe attract a jet set clientele. Associated since last year with Pharell Williams in the ToShare restaurant of the Hotel White 1921 in Saint-Tropez, Jean Imbert is close to Marion Cotillard, Omar Sy, Madonna, Robert De Niro and Beyoncé.

The Four Seasons George V has reopened one of its three restaurants, the one Michelin star George, which offers Italian specialties. A revival with fanfare facilitated by the superb terrace of the palace and the notoriety of the chef. Since the start of the health crisis, Simone Zanoni has become a star on social networks. Gordon Ramsay’s ex-right-hand man is stopped in the street by passers-by asking for selfies. He even set up a family business of Italian products sold online, Casa Zanoni.

La Estancia (“the ranch”), which the young entrepreneur Nicolas Hesse has just opened in Paris. The butcher shop made in Argentina.  Between Argentina and France, the crossing is done by boat, at 0 ° C, and it lasts a month. Good thing, this is precisely the time you need to give these cuts of black angus beef to tenderize them. Before opening La Estancia, Nicolas Hesse met many cattle farmers, chose one with whom he even partnered. His family having some means, he is also preparing to acquire a local vineyard to serve his own wine in restaurants … or rather in his future restaurants, if he manages to duplicate his concept throughout France. La Estancia, 27, quai des Grands Augustins, 6éme webpage :

La Rochelle with the certainty of finding a haven in which to spend the night. At the “Villa Grand Voile”, open last summer, no need to overdo the marine decoration, the ocean being at the end of the street. Between a nod to a boat cabin and a tribute to bourgeois history, the 11 rooms are adorned with the chromatic spectrum of the blues of the ocean and the sky, the stormy grays and the pinks of maritime twilight. White on the beds and walls. From parquet to the ground. An azure square in the courtyard to dive into a pocket pool. Even in stormy weather, we sleep like an old sea bass in these comfortable rooms, in which an iodized and gourmet breakfast is served to the song of the seagulls. In his Michelin-starred restaurant, which bears his name, Christopher Coutanceau works like no other with the lobster that is eaten whole, the flesh cooked on a rock of pink salt, the shell transformed into chips, the coral in foam and the brain in vinaigrette. . In his marine bistro, “La Yole de Chris”, right next door, we can enjoy dishes that are just as salty but more affordable.  Villa Grand Voile 12, rue de la Cloche, 17000 La Rochelle. Webpage :

In a few years,the rosé wine, the little wine of summer, has changed a lot. And it challenged a lot of preconceptions. It comes from Provence. It is true that Provence is the leading producer of rosé wines of controlled designation of origin (AOC): 38% of them are labeled Côtes-de-Provence, Coteaux-d’Aix-en-Provence or Coteaux- Varois-en-Provence. But if we consider French rosé wines in general, whether they are AOC, with a protected geographical indication (IGP) or Vin de France, it is Languedoc which is the first producer with, in 2017, 2, 6 million hectoliters vinified. Out of a total of 5.5 million for the entire French vineyard. The main rosé production regions are Occitanie (alone, the IGP pays-d’oc accounted for 23% of the national volume in 2016), Provence (19% of the national volume), the Loire Valley and the Rhône valley. It’s best if it’s clear. Let us say rather that the French prefer it clear. FranceAgriMer and the Interprofessional Committee of Provence wines in 2018 designed a series of pie charts to classify the rosés consumed in various countries according to their color. In France, it is clear, 30% of them are very light, only 15% are very dark. But in Italy and Spain, the result is the opposite: respectively 13% and 11% of rosés opened are very clear, against 46% and 50% of bottles with a very dark shade. Where does such a difference come from? First of all, varieties of grapes and terroirs. Light grape varieties, such as Clairette Rose, Grenache Gris, Pinot Noir, produce pale rosés when Syrah, Carignan or Merlot quickly transmit their color. Grenache oir gives rosés with an orange hue, while Cinsault delivers a more yellow color. Also, the more acidic a variety, the brighter its color, predominantly frank pink. Finally, weather conditions cause changes. The drier and hotter the year, the more colorful the grapes and wines.

“Pastis is like breasts. One is not enough, and three is too much, “said Fernandel.!!  Before sipping the famous pastaga, drink the words of Guillaume Strebler, who works at the Distillerie de la Plaine, in the 6éme arrondissement of Marseille. His workshop to “assemble your pastis” allows you to discover the dry ingredients that go into the recipe, by touching, smelling and tasting anise, liquorice, fennel or star anise. We continue with the identification of macerates obtained from 45-degree alcohol and these same spices and aromatics, joined by mate, pepper and verbena as well as anise essential oil. The latter contributes to squinting, that opaque whitening obtained when water is poured into its pure pastis. All you have to do is compose your own recipe from the ready-to-use macerates, before leaving with your homemade bottle – that’s a lot more than three glasses! Webpage:

The arrival of Dior, Yves Saint Laurent, Moncler in the Champs-Elysées are still moving upmarket. Avenue des Champs-Elysées has nearly 90 shops. See more webpage:

Under the sun of Cergy-Pontoise (Val-d’Oise 95). It is this new city in the great Parisian suburbs that the Louis Vuitton house has invested to film its Cruise 22 fashion show, broadcast on the brand’s website on June 15, in the afternoon. It is more exactly around the Axe Majeur (see post), this monumental open-air work of art imagined around the Cergy-Pontoise leisure center from the 1980s, that Nicolas Ghesquière has chose to unveil its new cruise collection. Webpage in French:

A jewel of Art Nouveau, the cupola of Galeries Lafayette has regained its former glory. The magnificent century-old work of 1,400 square meters built in 1912 by Ferdinand Chanut, Jacques Grüber and Louis Majorelle, three renowned artists, has regained its luster thanks to long-term restoration work, which has undergone a boost thanks to confinement. Webpage:

At the Centre Pompidou center, after two years of work, the caterpillar is restarting! Beaubourg’s iconic exterior escalator has been completely replaced. It had been at a standstill since fall 2019. A colossal project, accompanied by an enlargement of the main entrance. By 2023, another major renovation will shut the museum down for nearly three years. Be there quick!! Webpage:

Free parking for scooters and motorcycles in Paris will soon end. The measure will be effective from 2022. It is now done: in 2022, prices will be 3€ per hour in the first 11 arrondissements (zone 1), and 2€ per hour in arrondissements 12 to 20 (zone 2). For this, 5,000 parking spaces will be created, and fines will increase from 50€ to 75€ in zone 1 and from 35€ to 50€  in zone 2. Paris is excluding itself once again!

At La Défense (dept 92), the Rose of Cherbourg ready to be reborn. Until then not very welcoming, this link between Puteaux and the business district will welcome, by 2022, a tower designed by Jean Nouvel, vast green spaces and a suspended footbridge directly inspired by the famous New York High Line. The circular boulevard interchange will be transformed into a suspended promenade inspired by the New York High Line. it will be partly covered by nine arbors. More info in English webpage:

The great return of the Fête des Loges in Saint-Germain-en-Laye (Yvelines 78) Canceled last year, the famous funfair will resume its usual summer quarters from July 2. The Fête des Loges, 368th, on the agenda, such as the official inauguration of Saturday July 3, the coronation of the Queen of Lodges on Monday 5, or the celebration of the Saint-Fiacre on Thursday 22, with its stroll in music and its mass organized on the track of the bumper cars. From Friday July 2 to Saturday August 15. From 15h. to 01h30. Monday to Thursday, from 15h. to 02h00. on Fridays, from 14h to  02h00. on Saturdays and from 14h. to 01h00. on Sundays and public holidays. Free entrance. Webpage:

In Marseille, room 604 of the New Hôtel Le Quai is the starting point for a sunny escape. A stone’s throw from La Canebière, the New Hotel Le Quai claims its discretion behind a 19C facade. Renovated and reopened in 2020 by Caroline and Camille, daughters of Georges Antoun, the president of the New Hotel group, the establishment, which was once a guesthouse, is dressed in wood. The large room on the ground in geometric designs entertains at breakfast time, while the minimalist reception counter welcomes at any time with reserved benevolence. On the floors (6, for 48 rooms), the felted corridors, with striped graphic carpets and raspberry walls, lead to the rooms whose atmosphere evokes the Provencal holiday homes of the 1970s. A newbie to be tested in historical Marseille. Webpage:

And yes my part of the world is unique and more and more are coming here to my Bretagne . There is a need to make rules for the avalanche before its too late. We are on the move! The calm before the storm in the village of Saint-Jacut-de-la-Mer (Côtes-d’Armor 22), a charming peninsula on the banks of the Channel, the number of inhabitants goes from 906 to 10,000 to arrival of summer in which the town has 63% of secondary residents. There is a risk of becoming an open-air retirement home. Brittany has them on a good part of its coasts. In 2017, 13.3% of dwellings in the region were second homes. On the Morbihan coast, this rate climbs to 80% in villages like Arzon! (Presqu’ïle de Rhuys) .The Breton Democratic Union (UDB) party already with a proposal? Reserve the purchase of real estate in the most desirable areas for people who have lived for a year in the same community of towns. It is inspired by an abortive idea of the Corsican separatists, which provided for a period of five years of life on the territory to access the purchase on the island. To be continue….

For a different taste from America in Paris. We could count on Grindz of Hawaii to warm our hearts and make us travel! It must be said that this new neighborhood canteen with good vibes and a colorful atmosphere saved our lunch breaks thanks to its recipes full of flavors. On the menu, fresh, good and homemade! A second Hawaiian address will open very soon in the 8éme arrondissement! Grindz of Hawaii 29, rue Beaubourg 3éme. Open Monday to Saturday from 10h to 21h. webpage :

There you go folks, another wonderful belle France awaits us all!!! Be there or be square!!! We are on the move again!! And remember, happy travels, good health, and many cheers to all!!!

June 15, 2021

My nostalgic ,sentimental Meaux!!!

And I get nostalgic and sentimental each time I need to write about Meaux . This one was an older post I like to revise, refresh, update links and tell you and me again more about Meaux. Here are the stories…

Once again I have to come back to this quant town of Seine et Marne dept 77 Ïle de France region , where Disneyland is located nearby.  There have been so many times here that I lost count, I know the town without any gps or google help and proved it again this time. Here began my French history when I met a young lady native of the town of Meaux back in 1990, and as the saying goes, the rest is history and a beautiful one indeed falling short due to her cancer that took my dear late wife Martine. And glad thanks for giving me 3 wonderful good young men. 

This trip was to see the maternal mother, mother in law, maternal grandmother and the rest of the French family with sisters and nephews, nieces and cousins. It was something different this time, for the first time on our wedding anniversary (26 December) my young lady was not with me. She passed away from cancer last April 30 2018. It was a sad trip, but a must trip to relieve those times and gain strenght with the family for the future.

This is Meaux, Brie country, the king of cheeses, the cheese of kings, Vienna congress 1815. I like to show you a bit more on this memorable town always in my heart and soul.  We came to the inlaws house and immediately set out to walk the town with the boys and I. First stop was the house where I met her at 36 rue Noefort, a humble sweet home and a magical spot indeed!

We passed by the cinema Majestic in which I saw my first movies in France at place Henri IV. Now part of the UGC cinema group, more here: UGC Cinema Majestic Meaux


While there we realized they had a Christmas market at the Place Henri IV, where many times we did parking to walk into the old town area on Rue Général Leclerc. It had now an ice skating ring as in many years.


Walking along the Rue Général Leclerc we go into the old town direction the Cathedral (another post on it) , and we find many familiar spots still open like the wonderful La Fromagerie or cheese store!


Continuing on the Rue Général Leclerc you past by the historical Hôtel de la Sirene; built by 1740. It has change names until the a luxury hotel; this hotel was occupied by the Nazis in WWII and later by the American officers station in this region. The hotel closed in 1986, and its now private property.


Our walk coming from rue Noefort along the Rue du Faubourg St Nicolas into old town past place Henri IV and the Rue Général Leclerc with the Cathedral in sight!!


In the evening we came back after having lunch in the sister in law house in a village nearby; there is a Finnish sauna with a central barbecue which was awesome to do it with the family there.



We headed back to the city and parked this time by the boulevard Jean Rose right next to the old ramparts and behind the Cathedral of St Etienne (St Stephen) (see post), this is wonderful indeed, and here you walk all along first the Rue du Faubourg Saint Nicolas just around the house of my dear late wife Martine.


You walked past the wonderful old hospital or Hôtel-Dieu where the historical archives of the city are now kept. Again on Rue du Faubourg Saint Nicolas.  A bit of history on this building is a must. The Priory of Noëfort (today modern headquarters of the gendarmerie French national police) ,and the General Hospital, founded in 1667 to intern the poor and vagrants in application of the great containment decided by the Royal Ordinance of 1662. A large part of the land of this district belonged to settlements. such as the Grand Hôtel- Dieu of Meaux. Also , here there is a large mass of archives, because these are always better preserved by religious institutions than by the laity.


The Rue du Faubourg-Saint-Nicolas is none other than the Decumanus Maximus which crossed the ancient city from east to west. In the 5C, there was St. Céline, a friend of Saint Geneviève; On her tomb, placed extra muros in the ancient tradition, arose a church that had to endure until the French revolution. So along this wonderful street off my dear late wife Martine street, we found our bakery of old; and of course we purchase the baguettes, apple pie  ,chocolate flan, to take to the family as sharing is a French passion especially when food is concerned. The bakery is Le Fournil du Faubourg (under new owners) at 52 rue du faubourg st nicolas.



As I am on foood, let me tell you about another gem. I have another exclusive post on it but briefly, this is Meaux. If you know French gastronomy and you should simply the best always imitated but never better,then you should know about Brie. The Brie de Meaux cheese (the real one here! ) was elected by the leaders of Europe in the Congress of Vienna of 1815 as the king of cheeses and the cheese of kings! Here is the original anywhere else is imitation even if legally sold the milk for the original has to come from Brie country and only here you get the Terre de Meaux brie with cow milk from the Meaux region or pays de Meaux!! Enjoy it while here, short distance from Paris and Disneyland and none better than the Fromagerie Saint Faron, (see post) unique. Only in French of course, its original! Official tourist office of pays de Meaux region on the fromagerie Saint Faron



There you go another wonderful family trip to a memorable wonderful loving enormous city of Meaux for me. Thank you very much for following along my blog ; it is appreciated.

And remember, happy travels, good health, and many cheers to all!!!

June 13, 2021

Arradon by the coast of Morbihan!!!

I will do a mix here, this is an older post on Arradon that I was going to update the text/links. However, I stopped by the town yesterday mid day with the boys and took new pictures of its main monument and port. Therefore, I will put a revise text update the links and the pictures will be new from 2021! How about that to tell you about Arradon by the coast of my beautiful Morbihan!!!

Of course, I have several posts on Arradon in my blog as it is near me about 20 minutes by car; you take the expressway free N165 and get off at exit Plescop/Arradon and get on road D127 to Arradon There is no train station,and the bus no 4 takes you here from the gare de Vannes to the mairie d’Arradon. The town is literally next to Vannes.

See the bus schedule on the city of Arradon webpage:

They do have nice beaches , such as plage de Kerbilhouet, plage de Penboch, and plage la Carrière (best). It has a nice marina harbor, the Pointe d’Arradon is a small peninsula of 700 meters long by 200 meters wide at its widest point and it serves as a boarding terminal for passenger boats visiting  for the nearby island of l‘Ile-aux-Moines (Monks island but there are no monks now), and great seafood!! Also, next to the Carriére beach as above.

arradon plage la carriere by pointe d'Arradon sep20





My fav plages tv on the plage la Carriére beach in French:

There is a beautiful Church of St Pierre at the city center, a Chapelle du bourg (for cultural events , expo etc) , and we had lunch. 

The Church of Saint Pierre (see post) at city center is at 2 rue Louis Quilleré.   It is of gothic style begun in 1885 and finished in 1888.  It has inside a painting representing the holy cross or “Sacré-Coeur de Jésus entouré d’angelots”  from the 18C in the south transept, another the deploration of Christ dead or  “La Déploration du Christ mort”,dating from  1847  and located in the ambulatory, yet another the virgin taking care of her sons in crucifixion or “la Vierge tendant son fils aux enfants et une Crucifixion”, located in the baptismal room. The church, also, houses a statue in wood from the 17C of Saint Vincent Ferrier (that visited Arradon in 1419 while evangelizing the area coming from Valencia Spain, his body lies in the Cathedral Saint Pierre at Vannes) , also the statues of Saint Pierre and Saint Roch. The clock in the south nave dates from 1895. The church is in granite rubble, tower and steeple in freestone and the vaults in Saint-Savinien stone.

The Diocese of Saint Pierre in Arradon webpage:

Chapelle du Bourg, at pl de l’église (see post) in city center, now exhibits contemporary art, sculptures, artists arts, concerts, photo expos, themes and history in an educational manner. It was the previous Church of St Pierre from the 15C, and until the 17C it carries weddings and baptismal ceremonies there . It became what it is today from 1889; however, it is still a sacred building!!!

We had our lunch at the Créperie Les Logoden, (breton for laughs)  20, rue Albert Danet  tel +33  02 97 46 79 03. Where the food was great with galette arradonaise with local breton sausages, cafe gourmand with expresso coffee and small pots of creme brulée,far breton, and apple crêpes, a 50cl house red wine(2/3 bottle), and similar faires for the gang all for 18,40€ per person!!! the service was a bit slow but this is a small town, once we got going the lady started talking more lol! To emphasize the food was fantastic, the welcome a bit cold. No web but a Facebook page:



Some webpages to help you plan your trip here and nice by the coast/beaches are

The city of Arradon on its heritage:

The Gulf of Morbihan tourist office on Arradon:

The Bretagne tourist board on the plage la Carriére in Arradon:

There you go folks, another dandy in my beautiful coastal Morbihan. Enjoy the trip its another gem off the beaten path ,Arradon of my Morbihan Breton and you are all degemer mat or Welcome!!!

And remember, happy travels, good health, and many cheers to all!!!

June 11, 2021

Memories of Fontainebleau!!!

As I have been saying, Fontainebleau has a nice special meaning to our family. We never lived there but it was the first castle visited in France ever by us. This as consequence that my dear late wife Martine was from the region and she took me there first proud of her Fontainebleau. We have come back several times, I am friend of the castle, and plenty of posts in my blog on it. However, let me tell you about a culinary event nice again in Fontainebleau.

And onwards with my tour of memorable restaurants and what is coming to France without going to them! Culinary and wine capital of the world!!! This one is short and sassy but lots of good souvenirs. Mind you is an update of an older post, re-living wonderful memories!  If you have read my blog , I will cut it short. Fontainebleau is in dept 77 Seine-et-Marne the region of ïle de France.

Obviously, this is very close to family and good for same day visits, so not too many eating adventures here, even we do have eaten here! The Le Délice Impérial is a classic there and a must to go eat.  Le Délice Impérial at 1 rue Grande, Fontainebleau. At the corner of rue Grande and rue de France, the superb stall of pastries can not escape the eyes. It must be said that three pastry chefs officiate every day in this house founded in 1889 for our greatest happiness. The house offers on-site catering, but also takeaway.


I have been there a couple of times , and the last one in town all day, we ate again at the Le Délice Imperial. They have a huge dessert center where 3 pastry chefs change each day the menu. At the side of the restaurant, they is a small fast food place for sandwiches etc, and you can take home too. We had several beers, coffees, two desserts for each, milk shake, tagliatelle bolognaise, burger dish, and 3 roasted pork dishes, all delicious. Worth the detour when taking time to see the Château de Fontainebleau walking distance to it.


The Fontainebleau tourist office on the resto:

The official page has it with Le Délice Impérial

As a souvenir, this was the first place we ate there while visiting way back that do not remember the date. Our favorite was the Le Caveau des Ducs at 24 rue de Ferrare, but unfortunately it has closed a few years back. I found an old picture so will post here just for the memories.

Fontainebleau le caveau des ducs closed dec07

Hope you enjoyed eating here as we did/do and have a great time in a wonderful city with a hugely important castle, Fontainebleau.

And remember, happy travels, good health, and many cheers to all!!!

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