A Meditation on Poulet Rôti

“You can always judge the quality of a cook or a restaurant by roast chicken, While it does not require years of training to produce a juicy, brown, buttery, crisp-skinned, heavenly bird, it does entail such a greed for perfection that one is under compulsion to...

Culinary: In Praise of Chestnuts

Did you know that the Emperor Charlemagne enjoyed roasted chestnuts with a glass of wine? Neither did I. Or that chestnuts were an indispensable ingredient of Talleyrand’s table? The citizen minister believed the most important quality of a diplomat was to be a...

Travel: The Best Little Bookstore in Paris…

…assuming you’re not looking for Voltaire, or any other work of French fiction. Traveling east on the mellifluous sounding rue Saint-André-des-Arts, one reaches a lock (read: door) at No. 70 , which leads to a small, shallow tributary of red carpet wide enough for one...

Flea Markets: Villeneuve-les-Avignon

There are few settings as dramatic and glorious for a flea market as the one on place Charles David in the sleepy town of Villeneuve-les-Avignon. Perched high above the square (more rectangle), you can see the ruins of a papal palace and to the immediate east, the...