Wednesday, December 12, 2012

Faire les Courses

My first full day in Beaune…what to do? And how early can I start??  We decided to start to tick the items off the list as soon as possible, so we walked through the center of town and down the Route de Pommard to the car rental; conveniently, there was a Christmas tree seller almost across the street, so with the car all sorted we also got the tree.  There are several places to get trees in town, but I just wanted to get it done, and didn’t feel like driving around price shopping,which is generally inutile.  This one has a cute little cabin for the office~ 


The people around Burgundy generally favor reusable décor and garlands…these the red check curtains would be cuter without the red plastic garland, but whatever~


After that, we went off to run some of R’s errands, then some major grocery shopping since he usually doesn’t have a car.  I began to load up on local goodies to gift for Christmas and to use in future cakes~


I love to scour a number of stores for simple little gifts; food, salts, anything with nice French writing on it.  I wondered how much trouble I would get in if I gave my teen nephews these gumball-sized pea shooters for Christmas; they were huge!  The thought was fun, but I didn’t buy~


Lots of party supplies in all shades, but I passed~


Natural linen twine, yes, I buy a lot of them.  This one is large and was $5.  I’ll take it out of the Carrefour wrapping and include a nice pair of scissors; great gift for a lot of people I know…..I can never find this in the States~


I found a trio of baskets covered in cotton that is meant to look like the toile a couche that the bakers use; this was just a cheap imitation and the sewing job was poor; love the look but I passed;


After that, we went to the DIY store, only to be two minutes late for the noon-2pm closing.  See, it’s pretty tough in France this time of year.  Stores open around nine, closeat noon and reopen at 2pm, then three hours later it’s dark again!  I like to profit from the sun and get as much done in the daylight as possible and sit at home at night when it’s cold.  Anyway, I popped in to the Grand Frais store next to Monsieur Brico the DIY store, and found a few more things on my shopping list but mostly admired the fine French Savoy Cabbages~


And Italian Chard and Chouflour~


And after that, it was home for lunch.  R ate the dinner leftovers from last night, and I had some crevette rose, which you get all over France for a great price and somehow, they are consistently tasty~


I also set out the selection of cheeses we bought that morning and R brought out a bottle of Chablis for lunch and dinner appertif.  Counterclockwise from 7 o clock position, mildest to strongest: A fresh goat cheese from the Burgundy region; a round of St. Marcellin; a wedge of cow’s milk cheese made by the Trappist Monks at the Abbaye de Citeaux not far from Beaune- this cheese is known as “les Citeaux:” a small wedge of Comte from Switzerland; one of my very favorites- Epoisses from Burgundy; a small wedge of Bleu d’Auvergne from central France:


After lunch I wanted to get right back to making my shopping rounds.  One of my first stops each trip is the one and only thrift store in town.  Emmaus.  Say “Em-Ah-Oose.”  You never know what you will find here, but you know it’s cheap. It’s a real bottom fisher place, for sure, but the locals who shop here mostly want clothes and shoes and so I feel like the stuff I want is usually to be found; it’s like a vide grenier in a store.


I skip the clothes and stuff and head right for the home goods.  I usually find great vintage bottles here, but today I passed on two very large green wine bottles and looked through all the 1 litre canning jars; took home 4 of these at 50 centimes (about 60 cents) each; you will see how I gift these later~


Next I saw this large white soupiere.  It’s old, stamped and number imprinted on the bottom with the manufacturer; Gratinee printed on the side, lion heads on both sides; it was $6.  It will be a fun piece, it’s coming back to CA with me~


I hate to bring R here sometimes as he takes so long to get through the books and all the little stuff.  But he picked up a hand knotted rug from Afghanistan for $100.  It’s in perfect condition and I thoroughly approved~


There is lots of stuff to be had here; this was expensive, but I think I lot of people love these; a full set of flour, sugar, tea and coffee canisters.  This one was about $10 for the single piece~


I know someone who would love this sugar bowl, even though the lid is missing, and tea cups; might go back to get these~


These pink tea cups were marked; pretty, but I passed on them~


Upstairs you can find all kinds of paille or rush seat chairs, for about $6 each~


And always about 15 night stands of various sized and conditions, usually with marble tops, about $40 each~


We need a new sconce at the top of the stairs; this one is bronze and was $5…it came home with us~


I also loved a large lot of bronze tiebacks.  They were $3.50 each.  There were three pairs in sizes which varied slightly.  I would use these for a series of 6 coat hooks.  But I passed on them, and when I went back today they were gone Sad smile~


After that, we went over to Gamme Vert, one of the home and garden stores.  I look for stuff with French on it; I wonder if we printed wood boxes with Plants if people would pay for them?


This is where we got the Christmas tree last year; even after Christmas they still wanted almost $50 for a small tree, but that’s the going rate here~


My favorite thing to do at this store is run my hands over the Boxwood outside in the garden area.  I’d love to take them all, and I mean all~


And just look at these cones; so French, so well manicured and tall; are they perfect?  Oh, but they are also very expensive. Forty something dollars for each one…though even that would not be bad in the US for this condition.  Serious NICE~


After that we headed back to the DIY store and bought a few items, then home.  All that shopping, and we were ready for dinner.  I made a veal chop for R with mushroom sauce, and I had a dozen escargot with a green salad.


I bought 48 frozen escargot ready to bake in their garlic butter, and I’m going to eat all of them in a week.  I remember seeing one of the realty show clips of that stylist gal from LA going to Paris and holding her nose.  She was….like seriously….snails?  Mais Oui.  I love them.  And I have washed the first dozen of these mow empty shells; they will be saved and when I have 50 of them, then I will display them somehow.

I forgot to mention, I also bought a trio of small porcelain whiteware including another mini soupiere and a nice linen sheet with central seam at Emmaus.  I’ll show you soon how I used that sheet.

Tomorrow, more errands, more work around the house, and a drive through the vineyards.


  1. I'm with you in spirit - you've had a wonderful day. The local Emmaus store looks so much better than ours! Book me in for a shopping spree in the last week of June 2013. Looking forward to your next instalment from France.

  2. Ok, I am dying! DYING I tell you!!! I so needed the tiebacks.....:)

    The rug and sconce are fantastic!!!

    Mais oui to snails, cheese and WINE!!!

    1. I should have bought them yesterday; but take heart, in 24 hours I found 20 things that Laura needs and for more posts, and a package to you by New Year. I know you loved our visit to Emmaus together last year!

  3. What a wonderful afternoon shopping. Good for you.

  4. Andrea I adore your sconce; a great find. The rug is gorgeous as well!I am just sorry that I did not get a list together before you has been a grueling week and it is only Wednesday; I am keeping my chin up though!!

    2012 Artists Series,

  5. You have been so productive! When I think of Burgundy I think of Oeufs Meurette, which my kids JUST loved. Do you have a recipe?

  6. Hi I am new to your blog, love it. Is R your boyfriend and do you have a home in Beaune?

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  8. Well...I noticed above...that Laura is DYING! That means the TWO of us need CPR.
    It warms my heart to know someone that gets excited about natural linen twine!
    So elated to behold the blessings of your journey to Burgundy and Beaune!

  9. I'm a new follower, & just loved your explicit tale of struggling with luggage on the RER !! It took me back to an experience I had, but fortunately I was with my other half. Now he makes me travel with only a carry on case with wheels. I know exactly how traumatic it was for you. But your great finds in Emmaus must have made up for it. Like your other follower, your Emmaus is must more up market than ours in Limoges. Enjoy your stay in France... 'et a bientot'

  10. Oh, Andrea,
    Wish I were with you on this Holiday, The tree and cabin is pure sweetness and I would have done the same, get myself to the colsest place and buy a sweet tree.
    When you got to the (Escargot with a green salad) oh you had my hearts desire, I would have a meal like this isn the Bay area before I moved to Southern Ca at two of my favorite French places to dine and wow the taste of butter and garlic mild herbs smothered over the escargot (Snails) nothing compares, and then a desert of sorts would make my dinning evening perfect.
    You Andrea have a life to love.......

    Une fête de la joie de vous. Joyeux Noël, mon cher ami français.

  11. What fun Andrea.... I would love to be there for the holiday's... Hope you have fun and enjoy the season
    Merry Christmas,
    Casual Loves Elegance