Great Views, No Loos, Dreary Food

Okay, I admit I was a tad grumpy before ever arriving at Gérald Passédat’s La Table in the MuCEM, the spectacular new Museum of Mediterranean and European Civilisations right on Marseille’s waterfront. A mail confirming my reservation had informed me that le port d’une tenue de ville est recommandé (basically: please don’t show up in… Continue reading Great Views, No Loos, Dreary Food

Blushing apricots for a buxom tart

Alsace doesn’t really do apricots – it’s not usually hot enough to ripen them up here, tho this year would certainly be the exception. At the moment ours are coming from the south of France. Or if I nip over the border to Basel I can find apricots from the Valais, Switzerland’s southernmost, sunbaked alpine… Continue reading Blushing apricots for a buxom tart

Le Boeuf Noir, Hésingue – Happy Anniversaries

Today being our wedding anniversary (43 years ago today, All Saints Church Manfield in N. Yorkshire, woohoo), we took ourselves out to lunch. And not just any old lunch, you’ll be happy to hear. We booked at the Boeuf Noir in Hésingue, a favourite spot of ours. Owned and run by Josiane and Jean-Pierre Giuggiola… Continue reading Le Boeuf Noir, Hésingue – Happy Anniversaries

Time to Chill – Think Iced Soups

When the sun comes out – which it is finally, reliably doing around these parts – our world changes. People’s faces break out in smiles (even in Basel ;-)), arms and legs are bared and bronzed, tables and chairs spring up on pavements outside cafés and restaurants, happy swimmers bob along on the Rhine’s speeding… Continue reading Time to Chill – Think Iced Soups

Dilled Salmon + Riesling Cuvée Frédéric Emile = Heaven On Earth

Summer speaks to me of marinated fish – quick, easy and fresh for those sultry days and balmy evenings. It’s always a close-run thing between ceviche and dilled salmon (aka gravad lax) – this week dilled salmon won out. The recipe comes from my brother Simon – he does it with reservoir-caught, pink-fleshed trout, of… Continue reading Dilled Salmon + Riesling Cuvée Frédéric Emile = Heaven On Earth

The Mâconnais – Burgundy’s Sunny Side Tries Even Harder

[A version of this article is currently running in the June issue of Decanter] The wine growers of Burgundy’s Mâconnais region have understood the Avis principle. To the north is the Côte de Beaune, the rich, glamorous neighbour producing some of the mightiest, priciest white wines in the world. To the south lies Beaujolais, the… Continue reading The Mâconnais – Burgundy’s Sunny Side Tries Even Harder