Kinsale by way of Paris

April 20, 2009 at 9:16 pm Leave a comment

Since we have friends who are going to Paris for the first time, I thought I’d take detour from Cork to Kinsale by way of Paris and environs. It’s not that much of a stretch as you will see when I get to my discussion of the “wine geese” in Kinsale. We’ve been twice and love Paris almost as much as Ireland. Our last trip was over the Christmas holidays and I heartily recommend that time of year. We stayed at the Hotel Trouchet,  which is conveniently located near the Métro Havre-Caumartin.  Next door is a delightful glove store. Some places we have enjoyed include:

  • E. Dehillerin cookware store – We found this great source of cookware while wandering around les Halles. You’ll find all sorts of knives, pots from butter warmers to ones that would fit a couple of missionaries, and everything in between. You’ll see students with their supply lists selecting what they need for school. After you look around you approach a salesperson who will take your order and then deliver it to the business office. I knew I’d love this place when I saw a photo of Julia Child in a niche in the business office (She really did shop there).
  • Boutique Maille mustard store – Near the Hotel Tronchet is the Maille mustard store at Place de la Madeleine. Look around and then stand in line. You can buy individual jars of mustard or they will pour mustard out into a crock from the tap.
  • Bateaux Mouches boat trip up the Seine – These open air boats are a great way to see the city from the river.
  • Braserie le Coupole – One of the old fashioned grand brasseries. We got the big seafood thing. Bus to Versailles – They advertise these bus trips all over Paris to find one and go. Read Marie Antoinette by Antonia Fraser before you go. OMG was this place over the top!
  • Restaurant L’Esturgeon in Poissy – We got  into Paris on the TGV from Dijon tired and hungry and found our way to this restaurant in Poissy on the subway. They greeted us, took our bags, sat us down and pointed out the heron hanging out on a log on the Seine. After ordering wine we started to relax and watch the swan swim down the river.  Get the Poissy cocktail (champagne, orange juice and Poissy liquor). They also have the best crepes Suzette I’ve every had.
  • Hotel Scribe – My father, Jack, asked me if I was going to stay at the Hotel Scribe in Paris. I said I’d never seen it and didn’t until my last trip. Jack visited the Hotel Scribe after being liberated from a German prisoner of war camp, hitchhiking into Paris and staying at the R and R hotel. He had lots of excellent adventures, mostly featuring meeting pretty French women and hanging out with reporters in the bar.  When we were there over Christmas I shoved some kids out of the way to view the animated puppet show in the windows of the Galleries Lafayette department store. Coming back I walked under scaffolding to see the Hotel Scribe. It’s now a luxury hotel. I walked through to the back and found the bar. Perched on the bar was a large tub full of ice and about 18 bottles of champagne. I was in French heaven. I got a glass of the bartender’s favorite champagne and told him the story of Jack and this very bar. He gave me an ash tray which I sent to Jack after I got back.
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Pogue’s ancestral home Kinsale, Fishy Fishy and the Wine Geese

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