Eating on a Saturday night

I've been doing a fairly good job of eating at lots of yummy places while here in Paris. Obviously I've been doing a fairly crappy job of documenting those meals, mostly out of sheer laziness. But last night we decided to eat in for a change, and to soften the repeated blows my wallet has taken during this trip. To turn the documentation tide, I present a photo of what we had for dinner on Saturday night.

For our shopping, we decided we'd head to La Grande Epicerie Paris, the amazing food market at The Bon Marché — one of Paris' grand department stores. We started in the wine section and being, in reality, poser gourmands and wine afficionados, we just grabbed two bottles that looked good and tried to escape before the woman started speaking to us in French about wine. My French class hasn't gotten to that level of interaction yet, and I wasn't up to the challenge. The take? A half bottle of Domaine Pradelle Crozes-Hermitage, 2002 (white) and a full size 2000 Saint-Joseph from Ferraton Père & Fils. Where they good? Seemed so to us. We're pretty much happy with anything from the Rhône.

Next stop, the meat counter where we procured some mousse de canard. Somehow I managed to leave it out of the nice photo, so here it is just tossed on a plate. Then, on to the cheese counter!

Here we were at a loss as there were just too many cheeses to choose from. Though I have French Cheeses: The Visual Guide to More Than 350 Cheeses from Every Region of France, it was no use among the vast selection (because I didn't have it with me and hadn't memorized it all, yet…). So I used my every-improving French to explain our predicament to Madame la Fromagère:

(In French, sort of)

Madame, we do not know the cheeses well of France. Is it possible that you make a selection of three cheeses for us to know more the cheese?

Of course!, she replied, quite happy to be put to such a test. So she asked a few more questions and we ended up with a Brie de Meaux, a Comté Rivoire, and a bouton Charolai which was a button of a lovely aged goat cheese. They were all excellent, and Madame chose well for us. The Charolai was my favorite new cheese in a long time.

We had also picked up a saucisson sec aux myrtilles, a dry sausage with a blueberry(!) coating. It was good, but didn't have much blueberry flavor. And of course, the requisite baguettes upon which to spread our yummy cheese and mousse. It was tasty and easy and I have to say, I want to do it again very soon!