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November 2018 Newsletter

In just a few days, on November 6th to be exact, the paperback edition of L'appart will be released. (It's available for pre-order now. And you'll be the first to get a copy if you do.) I'm excited that the book is going to available in a new format, one that's easy to tote along on the subway for your commute, or to cuddle up with on the couch, on a cold winter night.

L'hiver (winter) is on its way. One thing that happens in Paris; there will be lots of nice days, then - bam - one day it's suddenly frosty cold, and that's it. It's winter for the next few months.

However there are always exceptions, and surprises in store (if you've read L'appart, you know what I'm talking about...), and another thing that happens is that we'll get a false start where it'll be freezing cold one day, and I'll change my comforter, unearth my mittens, scarves, and silk long-johns (which are the best), only to have another round of lovely weather surprise - and delight - us all. But I think the blustery weather is here to stay.

So I'm unpacking all my winter gear - hats, gloves (er, mittens), flannel jammies, and down quilt, in anticipation of the coming chill. And yes, I've also got a stack of good books (and a few extra kilos of chocolate for chocolat chaud) to carry me through, as well.

Sandrine Chappaz French chocolate chartreuse recipe-8

Last month I took a trip to the France alps where it was already starting to get chilly, to do some research for my next book. I visited the Chartreuse distillery, as well as a few others distillers and syrup-makers, and tasted many (many) eaux-de vie, apéritif wines, liqueurs, cordials, and, of course, a lot of Chartreuse, which I've grown obsessed with over the years.

The region is also famous from praline-crusted brioche, sometimes called a gâteau de Saint-Genix. Romain wouldn't eat the pink praline-festooned pastry, but I devoured most of it. It's a little sweet (okay, a lot...) but there's something very appealing about it. If you come to Paris and want to try something similar, the Praluline at François Pralus is similar. (They have several locations, listed on their website.) It's ridiculously sweet, but you'll find it hard to stop eating, too.

Sandrine Chappaz French chocolate chartreuse recipe-7

Speaking of sweets, there's a round-up of my favorite Thanksgiving Desserts from my blog here. It's a big time of the year for baking and I've stocked up on nuts and chocolate, and butter, in anticipation of a month or two of baking.

I know many come to Paris on vacation this time of year as well, and want to know what's open for Christmas and New Year's during the holidays. (Spoiler: Christmas Eve is the big night for French people, and most dine at home. Christmas day isn't the big holiday day that it is in the States. I avoid going out to restaurants on New Year's Eve, where you'll pay a lot more than you normally would, and the moment to ring in the New Year is past my bedtime.)

I've got some tips and advice for eating out during the holidays in Paris here. But a few other things: If you want to do some cooking for Thanksgiving, and gathering with others, La Cuisine is doing a cooking class for the big feast. At the American Cathedral, there's a big T-Day dinner on Saturday, November 29th. (Because Thursday night is a school night in France.) Breakfast in America is doing three seatings for a Thanksgiving dinner on the big night. And Joe Allen usually does a Thanksgiving dinner, although their website is under construction so you'll need to call for more info.

I got a nice shout-out from Celia Sack, owner of Omnivore Books in San Francisco, on the 10th anniversary of her shop. The first time I went to her cookbook shop to do a book signing, she had just a handful of books, which sold out (very) quickly. On subsequent visits, we still joke about that and now she makes sure she has enough. Last time, she also handed out whiskey and cookies to people in line.

So I'd better get back to working on my next book...so I can come back!

- David


New York City & Paris Book Events

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I'll super-excited to be returning to New York, where I'll be in conversation with author, and friend, Justin Spring to celebrate the paperback release of L'appart as well as his book, The Gourmands' Way, which chronicles the lives of six Americans who lived in Paris, including Julia Child, Richard Olney, and M.F.K. Fisher, and how they changed the way we eat and drink.

We'll be chatting, taking questions, and signing books, which make great holiday gifts, at Shakespeare & Co. in New York City. The event is free and open to the public, but space is limited and priority (i.e.; seats) will be given to those who pre-order one of our books or buys a $15 gift card from Shakespeare & Co. To reserve your spot, call the store at 212-772-3400. There's also a Facebook Event page if you wish to RSVP there.


In December, I'll be doing an event at La Cuisine cooking school in Paris. The fête will take place on December 2nd, from 3 to 5 pm. I'll be signing books; copies of L'appart and some of my other books will be available; you're welcome to bring pre-purchased books for signing as well. There will be wine and snacks. The event is free and open to all. If you wish, please RSVP at the Facebook Event Page so they know how many guests to expect. (So there's enough wine!)


Links I'm Liking

Sandrine Chappaz French chocolate chartreuse recipe-8

Did you know that TGIF was where the craft cocktail movement began? (Thrillist)

Paris cemeteries now only for the rich? (The Guardian)

French president complains the French complain too much. (Bloomberg)

Tips for Making the Perfect tarte Tatin. (On Rue Tatin)

Woman loses $35,000 when she returned a refrigerator to Costco with $35,000 stored in the freezer. (Munchies)

France warns citizens not to use iPads and other electronics while in the bathroom. (I need to tell my better-half about that, and not to monopolize the room, either.) (Connexion)

How the French "Mr. Chocolate" got his start in America. (CNN)

Craving a plate of squirrel brains? Think again… (Boing Boing)

All about balsamic vinegar, and how the real stuff differs from the supermarket stuff. (Simply Recipes)

Is there truly a method to stop crying when cutting onions? (Taste)

I get lots of requests where to eat in Nice. (I don't live there!) But here are tips from a local chef (Jan)

The downfall of rosewater in America. (Camera Obscura)

My friend Heather takes a trip to Costco Outside of Paris, to see if it's worth it. (Secrets of Paris)

Fig chutney recipe

Recent Recipes and Posts on My Blog

A round-up of my favorite newsletters

A bit of spice, and smoke, livens up these Peanut Butter Paprika Cookies

Homemade, French-style ribs in 30 minutes...on the stovetop? Mais oui!

A visit to Sandrine Chappaz French chocolatier and candy-maker. (Including chocolate-covered marshmallow teddy bears!)

Catalan Honey Cakes are spicy little treats, perfect snacks in the afternoon, but they'd also be welcome on any holiday dessert table.

- dl

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