Sunday, November 20, 2011

A Fine French Weekend Avec Mes Amis et Le Scout

These magnificent pear and apple tarts were actually served at Le Bon Vivant's October Third Friday's wine and cheese tasting, made by owner Catherine Meguire herself. When I arrived at last Friday's event, taking us to Burgundy, I was so swept up in the camaraderie that I forgot to pull out my camera until we'd reduced the magnificent cheeses to, well, this.
I was delighted to meet up with blogger friend Stephie of Small Girl Adventures again, who already has her own post up about the evening. Catherine welcomed us both with open arms, and I was happy to see a number of other delightful folks I had met on my last visit, and meet some new ones, too. It was definitely one of those evenings where being in the moment trumped taking photos for the blog.

I did not, however, come away empty-handed. This time I bought a bottle of one of the evening's five excellent Burgundian wines, a 2008 Domaine Nathalie et Gilles Chablis, which was a revelation as to what Chablis can be. I also purchased the Banyuls vinegar I'd had my eye on (a favorite of Jean-Robert, I hear). And of course, I couldn't walk away without replenishing my supply from Chocolats LaTour, which Le Bon Vivant carries.

After spending most of Saturday keeping a watchful eye over my recently returned kitty (ok, let's just say we both snoozed together a lot – I had no idea how exhausted I was from worrying about him), I had a taste for pizza. Not just any pizza, the Northern Woods pizza from Jean-Paul's Paradiso, made with a mix of wild mushrooms, a hint of rosemary, topped with goat cheese, on one of my favorite crusts, as only Belgian Jean-Paul can make it.

Jean-Paul puts his magnificent dough to use in other forms, like these tomato cheese breads.

The shop offers daily soups and much more. (Since my Thanksgiving plans turned wonky, I wish I'd learned earlier that they were offering T-Day carry-out; orders are now closed.) Do not miss their patisseries!

I bought some of Jean-Paul's pumpkin sorbet to hedge my bets for whatever I end up throwing together for Thanksgiving, and was happy they had my favorite chocolate mousse cups available, too.

As I head into Thanksgiving week, I am filled with gratitude toward all my friends and family, new and old, far and near. And especially thankful for the return of one of my very best friends, my Scout man guy, after his 2 1/2 week disappearance. He's purring again, and has finally meowed. He felt like a feather when he came back, but I am happy to report he is eating and putting weight back on. He has spent most of the weekend sleeping on or near me, something we both needed. He has eyed the front door a couple of times, but so far hasn't seriously wanted to go back out. Prayers work in mysterious ways - and cats work in mysterious-er ways. Thank you all for sending good wishes our way, and in return I wish you the best of Thanksgivings. Scout would too, if he weren't sleeping :)


Jenny said...

Oh, what a sweet photo. And I understand how exhausting the worry can be, so I'm happy that you're both "meowing" again.

I really, really, really shouldn't eat cheese, but it's hard to resist and those pictures are why it's hard at times; I love it. The more stinky the better.

Jen said...

1. I'm so glad you and Scout have been spending quality time together! What a comfort it must be to have one another again. I tell you--I am an animal person through and through and understand the comfort of having one on my lap! 2. I'm so jealous of you and Stephanie at the LBV event! Sadly I wouldn't have been able to eat the food but I've never turned down a glass Of French wine! 3. Next time I'm headed to Findlay we will plan ahead so we can meet up!

Catherine said...

Thank you for such a lovely article, Mademoiselle Aubergine! I was delighted to see you again on Friday.

For those of you who can't eat cheese, rest assured there are plenty of other things at Le Bon Vivant to please you: kitchen and table linens, bath and body, fragrances, wines and hard-to-find ingredients for the discerning gourmet and cook.

fishy said...

What a sweet picture of your adventurer!
So thrilled he found his way back to you.

Love that wonderful apple tart picture. I stayed in a Chateau where the chef/owner made one of these every morning. Yum! Even better than the croissants. If ever I get to Cincy .... will you take me on a food tour?

Sharon Rudd said...

Boxer, I'm a huge fan of fromage, stinky or not :) Oh, man, not only are you a vegetarian, you also aren't supposed to eat cheese? Maybe that's why you're drawn to baking - it represents a food group that's actually available to you :)

Jen, so sorry I didn't make it in time to rendezous with you and Tim Saturday. But we will find a time to meet at Findlay. And elsewhere too, I hope. Best of luck with your gluten-free baking, and Happy Thanksgiving!

Catherine, thanks so much for having me and Stephie. 'Twas such a fun evening.

Fishy, you betcha I'll take you on a food tour if you ever make it to these parts!

Aunty Belle said...

OH! That pear tart? gimme!!!

So happy to see a pic of Scout in repose--yippee!

Wish ya could be heah to taste mah collard greens---hee hee.

moi said...

Life without cheese is like life without sunshine. And those pear and apple tarts! Oh, my! I'm in charge of deserts for one of my Thanksgivings, and my preference is always to do something with fruit for the holiday. But half the people going only like chocolate and the other half want traditional pumpkin something or other, so I didn't have much of an opportunity to be creative this year. Still, pie, in any form, is better than no pie at all.

Happiest of Thanksgiving, Eggy, to you and Mr. Scout and all your buddies. Hope your day is awesome and thank you for writing such an inspired blog!