Sunday, November 28, 2010

Noël Gourmand

Q: What better place to go just before you eat your belated Thanksgiving Day dinner?

A: Noël Gourmand, our town's annual gluttony festival.

It's where all the local (and some distant) food producers assemble in late November to tempt you with ideas of what to serve your holiday guests. It's a sampler's delight. Here's my favorite stop, Auger's Patissier and Chocolatier.

They always set up little café style tables and offer free hot chocolate or gourmet coffee, plus a slice of one of their finest cakes. Today, it was a Bûche du Bois Cassés, a new one for 2010. It translates to a log cake of broken wood, but it sounds much better the way they promote it: "a delicious alliance of hazelnut and mandarine orange." It was very rich and creamy, and I'm all for alliances.

There are dozens of vendors for wine, cheese, meats and other specialty foods. I bought a bottle of pricey rapeseed oil... 50cl ( about 17 oz.) for 7€, because I'm a sucker for any company that sets out samples with bread. And this oil -- flavored with garlic and shallots -- boasts 10% Omega 3 fat. Sold.

I also bought a slice of chocolate cake at Auger's. I intended to cut it up to add to our already voluminous quantity of desserts for Thanksgiving. But I forgot about it. And darn, the last guests have left.

Well, just another sacrifice this gourmand will have to make this weekend....

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