Wednesday, March 5, 2008

A little recollecting

Had a wine today that really brought me back to a great term, my 2A term in Waterloo with my roommates Rocky and Ming. We had some great times, and drank some great wine and the bottle I opened today reminded me of that.

I opened a 2001 Bodegas Beronia DOC Rioja Reserva. Beautiful wine, lots of complexity and a really honest earthiness to it. Lovely. We discovered Rioja that term. It was our introduction to Spanish wine, and really, an introduction to full-bodied, masculine wines. The kinds of wine with a punch, that'll make your toes curl a little bit. When I drink these wines, I'm transported to the countryside. It's like I'm back in France, soaking in the sun, looking at the sun-drenched hills, taking in the sights and smells. Truly, a wine that holds a very special place in my heart.

My memories of the time I spent in Nice came back to me today. I was talking about food with my roommates, about duck in particular, and I remembered La Resto. Let me tell you about this very, very magical restaurant.

La Resto is a restaurant in Vieux Nice. It`s near the square, quite a busy place in fact. A small, family-owned establishment. I went there for dinner 3 times, because quite simply, I fell in love with their food and their genuine warmth for their customers. The first night, I had a glass of their vin rouge, a salade nicoise, and entrecote. The salad was good, but just not my kind of food. The entrecote was spectacular - really juicy piece of steak served with fries. Perfectly simple food, nicely cooked. This was the kind food that I was looking for when I was in France. The owner, and especially his son, was so nice that I had to go a second time.

The second dinner I had there, I had a vegetable soup, which was quite good. Nice texture, really fresh. For the entree, I had magrets de canard. Duck breast, pan seared, rare, with a side of fries. So delicious, I will never forget this dish. With a lovely sauce au champignon, really, really wonderful. And the girl that served me, as my roommates know, is my love. She was dressed all in black, and I remember quite clearly that she had a thick, black Chanel bracelet on, with the logo in white. She was a classic French beauty - brunette, and legs that went on forever. Really sweet too. She had this adorable way of saying, Et voila! when she served the food. I talked quite a bit with the owner`s son, David, that night. He spoke some English, and was really friendly. I promised him that I`d return before I left town.

I never break a promise, so the last night I was in Nice, I went back to La Resto. David remembered me, and he quickly ushered me to my table. That night, I just wanted something light, because I had a 7am flight the next morning. I hada Perrier and the magrets de canard again. I was the only person in the restaurant at the time, and we talked a bit. The girl was there. Margot. My love. She was dressed all in camel today, a sweater dress, I don`t really know the exact way to describe it. It was a long sweater, that ends in a skirt at the bottom. She was also wearing matching colour cowboy boots, with sparkles. With the outfit, and the hair, and the glowing tanned complexion, it was just too much. I love France! And I really love La Resto. When I go back, this will be my first stop. Definitely. That`s what I promised David on the way out, and I intend to keep my word. Oh and after dinner, he poured me a digestif, this sweet lemony liquer. I don`t know what it`s called, but it was a very nice touch.

So, in conclusion. I`m very thankful for these experiences. Because wine and food aren`t meant to be taken apart and analyzed like some sort of science. It`s meant to be shared, and it brings people together. That`s when you create memories that really last a lifetime.

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