A few months ago, as I was researching an article for the beautiful website Eat Love, I had the opportunity to meet with Ludovic Geyer, a French Chef who runs with partner Xavier Huitorel the popular Bistro Papillon, located in Sydney CBD.
Ludovic generously gave me his time to answer my questions about his experience of food as a French man who has been living in Australia for 8 years now.
Here are his answers… (translated into English by myself)
À nous la capitale!
Panorama Paris, view from Tour Montparnasse ©M.Venables
Following our little misfortunes in Lyon, we had almost a whole week in Paris to live the dream. We had rented a little studio in the 11th Arrondissement, with a “kitchenette”, which allowed us to cook a few meals, coffee and breakfast.
Our place was near the Goncourt metro station, which was ideally close to Canal St-Martin, République, as well as the cool Oberkampf area.
Soooo…. bonjour guys!
It’s been a while indeed! Please forgive my snail pace with regards to writing this blog: this year has been a busy one. But hopefully it will be rewarding with exciting stuff, so stay tuned!
To resume on my French adventures a few months back, after a perfect few days in Marseille, we took the TGV back to my parents’, who live in a little town in the Drôme department. We were pampered and fed lots of good stuff, so much so that I couldn’t face any cheese for a while after that!
My first encounter with Marseille was in my teens, when I started reading Jean-Claude Izzo‘s crime novels: the Marseille Trilogy followed jaded cop Fabio Montale in his quest for justice, amidst deeply anchored corruption, crime, racism… However you could really feel the love of Izzo for his city and its inhabitants and it was contagious. If you like your crime genre, I really recommend you get hold of these books (thank god they were translated into English).
Chef Darren Templeman and wife Bernadette, Restaurant Manager
A few weeks back I got to attend a superb degustation dinner at Restaurant Atelier, a little cottage located in Glebe Point Road. I had heard a lot about it from my colleagues and when the opportunity of a #twEATup with the regular offenders (& new ones) came up, I jumped on it! It also happens that my boss used to run a crêpe restaurant in the very same building back in the early 80’s, so I was keen to see where it all started!
A few weeks ago I attended my first “TwEATup”, which involves sharing a meal with people met through Twitter who all have one thing in common: an obsession with food!
The TwEATup was held at Booth Street Bistro in Annandale and our jolly team of Tweeps was composed of Karen, aka VanityFare1, Chef Adam Moore, Cenk from SocialDinnerClub, MissPiggyEats and hubby “The Boy”, LeBonVivant, Gary, MyGourmetFeast, and of course, Chef Darren and Bernadette from Restaurant Atelier!
We started with a few olives and an entrée of Fried calamari ($16), with some green bean fig dip and eggplant wafers: delicious! I could have eaten the whole plate by myself but had to share with everyone (roll eyes)..!
LBV, god bless him, had brought the most amazing wines selection from his personal cellar. Every bottle he took from his magic bag was as impressive as the next! I felt very privileged, and even though my rather uneducated palate could not appreciate these wines at their full worth, I thought they were pretteeee darn good!
As I might have mentioned before, my partner is vegetarian and although he’s never tried to convert me, I have happily taken to eating vegetarian only… at home. When I’m out with friends, it’s another story though: bring on the meat I say!!
Thus after a pleasant first “Meat-Up” banquet at Bar H for Chinese New Year, I decided to renew the experience, accompanied with my friends Karen and Cenk. The Meat-up dinners were started a few years ago by Tim Elwin from Urban Food Market, and this one was going to be held at one of Rozelle’s oldest pubs, 3 Weeds. I was all the more enthusiastic as I was yet to try the Restaurant part of the pub, headed by Chef Leigh McDivitt (I’d heard a lot of good things about him!)
Meat is tastier when you know that the animal was raised in a good environment and had a good life, something that Tim Elwin always had on his mind when he set up his sustainable butchery business, Urban Food Market. Tim makes a point of only sourcing the best meat possible, raised sustainably and ethically. For this dinner, all the meat and wine came from suppliers located within 100 miles of Sydney.
Back in December, like every year, my girlfriends and I had a meal at a nice Franchouillard restaurant for our pre-Christmas-madness catch-up. This year we decided to try Bistro Papillon, in the heart of Sydney CBD, near Wynyard Station.
Here we are, almost landing in Ho Chi Minh City (still widely called Saigon by most of the population). We have to go through a thick cloud of pollution to start seeing the city from above, it’s quite impressive!
We get a taxi to our hotel, the An An I Hotel, ideally located at the heart of the backpacking district on Bui Vien, and which was perfectly pleasant, with a huge air-conditioned room and an unbeatable view on the all the action down below. The staff were also very friendly and helpful.
St. Joseph’s Cathedral
I know I know, it’s been almost a year since my trip to France and Vietnam, but I only just got around to start looking through and sorting out all my Vietnam pictures!
Every time I plan for a holiday, I am torn between visiting my family and friends in the homeland, and travelling to new exotic places, where I can just sit on my “derrière” and drink cocktails on the beach.
That is why last year I decided to do both! Two weeks in France and two weeks in Vietnam: perfect! Yeees, not that perfect in the end, both were too short! Tough life…