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food in Marseille

Published on August 20, 2015, by in Food, France, Marseille, Travel.

Toinou – Les Fruits de Mer!   My eating in Marseille was a focused activity, based mainly on seafood. Some of my eating adventures are pictured here, and I have to say that my two favorite restaurants – both researched, in fact, long before my trip – during my 7-day stay were Toinou (4 meals) and La Boîte à Sardine (only 1 meal, regrettably). Toinou is part self-service, part place-your-order-at-the-counter, then you find a place at your table and wait for your order to arrive. My favorite thing there was their anchoïade (anchovy spread) spread on the mini-baguettes that you grab on the way to the order counter. Some of my selections are shown below.         Toinou – the sidewalk fish display         Toinou – sea bass with butter and fried potatoes         Toinou – shrimp with aioli on the side         Toinou – half a Breton lobster           Toinou – assorted oysters         La Boîte à Sardine, funky decor and delicious lunch   At the top of La Canebiere, and across the street from the Eglise des Reformes, is the slightly kitschy but fun La Boîte à Sardine (The Sardine Can), open on most days only for lunch, and serving exceptionally fresh fish. The menu is hand-written on a wooden box carried from table to table by the waiter.           Lunch at La Boîte à Sardine, catfish, potatoes,

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Paris places

Published on August 6, 2015, by in Food, France, Travel.

 Paris sky, evening   My internet access has been limited lately. Apart from not yet having wifi in my apartment, I lost my Nokia cell phone during the taxi ride back to my apartmentfrom Suzhou train station my first evening back from France. An unplanned new expense will be an iPhone in the next week.   Aside from that, I’m finishing up my dissertation for the M.A. in Teaching English for Academic Purposes, my title being Teaching English for Art History in a Chinese Context. The due date is September 1.   I will continue over the next couple of weeks to share photos from my trip to France. Below are some of my favorite places during my 8 days in Paris.      Restaurant Chartier, the “good value” restaurant I fondly remembered from my student days. I ate my first dinner there after my arrival in Paris.          The Paris Metro – a world unto itself. If you’re in the right mood, the mazes of corridors and “correspondances” can be fun in a dizzying sort of way.          I spent a lot of time in the Metro, thanks to my 3-day Paris Visite pass.          The covered passages or shopping arcades of Paris date mostly from the early 19th century. My favorites were the consecutive Passage Verdeau, Passage Jouffroy, and Passage des Panoramas, centered around the Grands Boulevards.          The Blé Sucré bakery on Square Trousseau came

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Paris, Paris

Published on July 27, 2015, by in Food, France, Travel.

    I knew that Paris would be different – no place stays the same, and with the passage of over 30 years I was a different person than I was in my 20s. There are a lot more chains and franchises now, the ubiquitous Starbucks, KFC, and Subway; the seedy areas I remembered from long ago are now upscale and stylish. There was also a heatwave, with temperatures in the 30s (Celsius), and almost as much English and Chinese spoken as French. It was, after all, the height of the tourist season, and not the optimal time for experiencing “typically French” atmosphere – if, in fact, there ever is such a time in the most-visited city on earth.   I was gripped by melancholy a few weeks before my trip; memories and regrets of my youth , a Christmas spent in Paris with my brother and our mother in 1979, worries that I would confront fragments of my lost self at every turn. Instead, I simply enjoyed myself. Yes, Paris is in many ways just another big and indifferent city, but my focus this trip was to see things I had missed before, and to enjoy the first trip of my life not regulated by constant money concerns. Above all, I wanted to eat.       I was actually in Paris twice, for 4 days each time, bookending my visit to Provence and a week in Marseille in between. It’s just the way it worked out. I stayed

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Chicago food

Published on August 3, 2014, by in Chicago, Food, Travel.

I’ve spent the past couple of weeks basically living out my food fantasies in Chicago, or re-living fondly remembered tastes from my past. Chicago is a food-lover’s city; if you’re in doubt, just check out the Flickr group Chicago Gluttons. Here’s a photo tour of some of the food highlights, both alone and with my brother Kenton:       My first meal in Chicago after getting off the plane at O’Hare: my brother took me to Sultan’s market for inspired middle eastern food – chicken shawarma, hummus, falafel, salads, pita bread. Yummmm.       Urban Vegan Thai food       Grilled Reuben sandwich on rye, Miller’s Pub; a blast from the past – I adored this sandwich when I was a college student in the 70s.       Native Foods – vegan nachos and “chicken” appetizers       Karyn Cooked, River North area: vegan falafel sandwich       Mexican lunch in the Chicago Loop, La Cocina Mexican Grill     Rangoli Indian restaurant on North Ave., one of the best Indian meals I’ve had; I ate chicken korma.     Rangoli appetizer, fried cauliflower     Another blast from the past: Five Faces on Division Street, open till 5 am. In the late 70s my friends and I would come here after the bars closed for the gyros sandwich with fries. The place is still here after all these years.     Gyros sandwich at Five Faces – just as I remembered    

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dumplings

Published on December 18, 2013, by in Food.

dumplings crew, Chongqing restaurant kitchen