DEPARTURES: “In Pursuit of the Provençal”
"There is Provence, of course, and then there is “Provençal.” While Provence has been content to stay put over the last few millenia, luring romantics and sensualists to its colorful landscape, “Provençal”-- the once-humble region’s evocative, chic-rustique style -- has gone out and conquered the world.” http://www.departures.com/art-culture/design/pursuit-provençal
THE LOS ANGELES TIMES "Old Town, New Money: The Richest Little Town in Switzerland
"The coffers of Zug were not always brimming with gold. For most of its 700-year history, Zug was an impoverished little lakeside town notable only for its catastrophes."
THE NEW YORK TIMES "In the Air on the Day the World Changed"
By LINDA DANNENBERG
Published: September 11, 2007
"Most of my flying is international, primarily to Paris and Nice. I have a passion for France, which has been the focus of my writing career for more than 25 years. On average, I make about five extended trips a year to France, producing books on French style and cooking. Work and pleasure have taken me around the world, but I’ve learned that it is sometimes the mundane domestic flight that changes your life." To read the full story, go to: http://travel.nytimes.com/2007/09/11/business/11flier.html?fta=y
TRAVEL & LEISURE: "Best Boulangeries in Paris"
THE SHOP: Vintage glass panels frame the façade of Maison Kayser (14 Rue Monge, Fifth Arr.; 33-1/44-07-17-81; closed Mondays), a destination boulangerie in the Latin Quarter. Eric Kayser turns out 60 different breads each day, among them the Malesherbes, a square-tipped baguette. His finely crafted viennoiseries—France’s traditional breakfast pastries—are as notable as his breads. The Kayser café is the perfect spot for a light lunch; a plat du jour, dessert, and coffee are about $15.
DON' MISS: His croissants, decadently plump, with a golden exterior that flakes at the merest touch and a meltingly tender center.
THE SHOP: On weekend mornings, expect to find a queue snaking down the sidewalk from Dominique Saibron’s contemporary glass, wood, and stone emporium, Le Boulanger de Monge (123 Rue Monge, Fifth Arr.; 33-1/43-37-54-20; closed Mondays). Fans (you’ll be one!) can’t get enough of his petits pains aux lardons et comté, slim, chewy rolls with bits of bacon and melted Comté cheese, or escargots cannelle, cinnamon-filled pinwheels of croissant dough with a buttery crumb topping.
DON'T MISS: The best-selling pain bio au levain, a delicately tangy organic sourdough loaf.
THE SHOP: Master baker Lionel Poilâne died several years ago, but his daughter Apollonia keeps the business flourishing. At this original (and decidedly diminutive) wood-paneled headquarters of the world-famous boulangerie Poilâne (8 Rue du Cherche-Midi, Sixth Arr.; 33-1/45-48-42-59; www.poilane.fr; closed Sundays), the bread is still baked in an antique wood-fired oven just downstairs.
DON'T MISS: The big, round miche; this dense sourdough loaf made from stone-ground flour can be decorated to your specifications and makes a fabulous gift. The rustic, free-form apple tart is another perennial favorite.
To read the entire story, click on the highlighted link.
TRAVEL & LEISURE: "Great Bistros of Provence"
One drizzly, bone-chilling week last winter I was in the Luberon, and the visit was not going well. Bad weather (yes, even in Provence) had caused work plans to go awry, leaving me with lost days and a grumpy disposition. For solace, I took myself to lunch at the cheerful Bistro de France in Apt. Within 20 minutes, planted on the banquette facing a truffle omelette and a generous glass of house rouge, I had an epiphany. I realized that at that moment, surrounded by animated diners and plumes of cigarette smoke, I felt utterly and completely happy. I hesitate to credit the bistro with transcendental powers, but that meal certainly brightened up my crummy day.
In the course of writing a book on Provençal style recently, I traveled from Arles in the Rhône delta, through the mountainous Vaucluse, and eventually over to the Var, often in the company of my photographer, a gourmand who preferred to starve rather than face a jambon sandwich on the run. The noon-to–three o'clock slice of the day, when the light was often too harsh for photographs, provided the perfect opportunity for leisurely lunches in favorite old haunts as well as in some of the area's newest dining spots. Throughout our journey, I looked for the best local bistros, scoping out places that offered a Provençal cuisine du marché—olive oil–based cooking using fresh-from-the-market ingredients. The best places not only provided excellent food but also possessed the four basic characteristics of any good bistro: a distinct personality, intimacy, a convivial atmosphere, and a generous spirit. Here, plucked from our extended journey through the herb-scented landscape of the Midi, are a few favorites.
To read the whole story, go to http://www.travelandleisure.com/articles/great-bistros-of-provence