Friday, lunch at La Tartinerie okay, I will put it plainly, I did not write a post last night because I enjoyed wine at dinner at Chez Ripert in the long overdue company of friends, Chef Julien and his wife Marion, Jean-claude from La Manarine...it was so fun that I may have consumed a bit too much wine and found myself with a touch of "the flu" this morning. That said it was crucial that I find a delicious remedy for this cold...I walked for nearly three hours. Seriously,I have a problem! Okay, a bit of poking in the shops may have slowed the process, and getting turned away from some places that close midday, and wandering because my hangover made it difficult to make any kind of decision or have any discussion in English, never mind French.
I recall at one moment thinking that I would never find the right place, I would soon collapse in the corner by one of the many churches in Avignon, never to be seen again. I began to try to compile a list of the first people who might notice I was missing...yes, good thing I found the right place when I did. A tagedy narrowly averted. (If this should happen, I would like Juliette Binoche to play me, ok?)
After nearly giving up, I walked into a small square, Place de la Principale, and I found La Tartinerie de la Chappelle. I said, quietly, but with confidence, "bonjour, peut- je prendre le dejeuner?" He answered, positively, and I sat down in the shade. (insert heavy sigh here-Bre, you know whatI am talking about!)
The menu is very simple, tartine, which is thick cut toast with a variety of wonderful spreads to choose from, served with a green salad, or galletine, again filled with your choice of delicious items and served with a salad...but the thing about the galletine is it is served with cider. It was a hot day today, though the Mistral winds cooled things off a bit, but made it much drier...yes, sun, heat, warm dry breeze, and a hang over...get me that glass of cold cider, s'il vous plait! And, stat!
I had one of those uncomfortable moments when traveling in a foriegn land, of which I have had several in the last four days, when the waiter delivered the cider. It is a small but recognizable bottle, familiar enough, but he places next to it a small ceramic bowl. Attractive enough, but am I seriously supposed to drink the cider out of it? I say merci, and look around with hopes that someone else has ordered this, to no avail. I wonder, should I ask? Mais non! I then consdier whether they are looking out of the quaint shop waiting for the stupid american to drink out of a soup bowl, but my thirst overpowers my concern for public humilation, as I am concerned that I may collapse and be dragged off by some undesirable (oh, I did not mention that part of the narrative? which is naturally followed by the "I told her so" narrative and the self-loathing. Okay, right, back to the main story), so I poured and drank from the lovin' cup and all was right, again. The cider is dry, light and refreshing with just a tiny touch of sweetness.
With the galletine, it is perfect.
I went for the obvious choise for my filled crepe, a soft egg, ham, and cheese, and it could not have been a more perfect remedy for what ailed me. One bit and a sip of my cold cider, and I was revived and ready to journey on. It could not have helped that I took so damn long to find the very perfect spot, but it was worth the wait.