Saturday, 31 December 2011

Oysters and Champagne: Bonne Annee!! Happy New Year!!

 The end of the old and beginning of the New Year in Champagne is celebrated with Oysters and Champagne and the house is decorated with 'gui' or mistletoe collected for the forests nearby....

We too had this pleasure but a day early due to a surprise visit from a very old friend Martin who has a very long association with our house...he designed and planted the garden and whiled away many an hour clipping and trimming and loving the garden on his frequent trips from well established in Paris Australian born Martin is a fashion designer of some note and he spends his days flying to all of the fashion capitals of the world...a stark contrast to our world in rural Champagne but it was inspiring and energising to reflect and remember the early days 15 years ago when we first fresh off the plane from New Zealand into a cold snowy Champagne as recipients of the Moet and Chandon Artists Residency and Martin relaxing at 'Aupres de l'eglise' from Paris as he worked tirelessly to build a name in the hard world of 'haute couture'.
View Martin's gorgeous woman's wear collections on

So we ate well and drank well and toasted the rekindling of a friendship while laughing and recalling tales from our past...not being a huge fan the oysters were gingerly received initially but once in the swing I thoroughly enjoyed the salty taste of the sea followed by the soft sweetness of the effervescent champagne...such an age old combination and one that rightly deserves its very own day on the food calender of France...the markets and supermarkets set up special stalls for the 'huitres' alongside bags of dusky pink shallots and fresh the local Rotary club was also handing out bunches of 'gui' [mistletoe] with its lovely cloudy white berries in return for a donation...

So here we are ready to launch into 2012....I think that I am now excited and ready to take it on!


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