Shopping is a woman thing. It’s a contact sport like football. Women enjoy the scrimmage, the noisy crowds, the danger of being trampled to death, and the ecstasy of the purchase. Erma Bombeck
Monday Oct 10, 2016
Honesty is the best policy, I am finding it difficult to journal Monday. It is difficult to sort through my feelings which are a complex mix of highs and lows. In hindsight my expectations should have been neutral.
On the advice of one of the head chefs at Cordon Bleu Ottawa I organized a tour of Cordon Bleu Paris for 10:00.
I have full fledged anxiety attacks including palpitations about being late and waiting for an appointmemt so I arrived for my 10:00 appointment at 09:40. Chris took the children to the park so I travelled on my own to its new location a stones throw from La Tour Eiffel on rue André Citroën. That in itself was remarkable and sincerely enjoyable as the half hour metro ride and walk to my destination was hands free and chatter free. Once there, I caught my breath, took a good look at the exterior of the building then went inside.
Everyone was very friendly…can not say this enough including the MOF who greeted me on his way to the practical kitchen. Still I was kept waiting until almost 11:00 for the tour which lasted maybe 10 minutes. I do not like to be critical because there are always exceptions to every rule and we are all human. I could clearly see that something exceptional was happening this day. People were running around worried…back and forth, back and forth. I understood from my guide that it wasn’t the best day to choose a tour because Cordon Bleu Paris was hosting it’s biggest event of its season. Okay, I understand, I am a small fish. That said, I booked the tour online over a month ago…they had my particulars, my student number, their schedule of events…they should have let me know so we both weren’t inconvenienced.
For me, I love the school in Ottawa, its teachers, its ambience, its character. When there, I feel in a small way a part of it, like it’s home. Perhaps I would have felt different touring LCBP at its old location on rue Léon Delhomme, perhaps it would not have seemed so stoic and sterile. Yes being a romantic, I can vividly, excitedly imagine crossing its threshold in the same manner as Julia Child, Rachel Khoo and Steven Raichlen. Yes, I am sure the walls and rooms of its old location would have whispered their secrets and I would have felt at home.
Also, a huge plug for my school in Ottawa…it’s people so warm and friendly and your boutique far more interesting to shop at. Bravo, Cordon Bleu Ottawa.
Audrey Hepburn is a heroine of mine and one of my favourite movies is Breakfast at Tiffany’s. There is a scene where she talks about the mean reds and the blues and that the only thing that does any good is to go to Tiffany’s. For me when I get the blues shopping helps a lot, especially if it’s kitchen shopping. My amazing husband instantly understood this need and suggested that after a restorative lunch of salmon with beurre blanc at the café in jardins du Luxembourg parc we hit all the kitchen stores I have been dying to go to for years: Dehilleran, G Detou and Mora. Friends, I shopped ’til I literally dropped.
I went with lists and product numbers to facilitate the experience and not become confused. I improvised when needed and am coming home with some fabulous finds.
Dehillerin located on rue coquilliere is amazing…wooden nooks and crannies stuffed to the brim with kitchen supplies. Sarah had the best thought on describing the store. It is Olivanders but for chefs. Here I didn’t stick to the plan improvised and purchased an awesome set of steak knives, a moule de Kouglof and an apron. If there is a next year the lamb mould for butter is first on my list.
At G Detou located at 58 rue Tiquetonne near rue Montorgueil I found cans of Imbert marrons in syrup, tonka beans and trablit coffee extract.
At Mora located at 13 rue Montmartre a pastry chefs dream shop I found a moule de chocolat for St. Nicholas. We celebrate his feast day on Dec 6 and this year the children will receive a chocolate figurine of St. Nicholas.