Saturday, September 08, 2012

France, Day 2, 8/23/2012

At 8:30, we have breakfast: coffee with milk, bread, jam, butter, and croissants. Then we walk into town. Lindsay wishes we had a fork and a knife for lunch. I agree but have no idea where to get them. Then we realize that we're standing in front of a kitchen supply store. Armed with utensils, we go to the next store over and buy two local cheeses: a wrinkled round disc of goat cheese, and a squishy cow's milk cheese.

We have a hard time finding the GR34, the trail that will take us to all the other towns. A woman sees us looking confused and asks if we need help. She speaks impeccable English and leads us to the trail, chatting the whole way. Then we walk towards Mont-Dol, a little hill with a flat top.

Toby in front of Mont-Dol.

The view from Mont-Dol.

We eat lunch in the town of Hirel, after hiking for two hours. Both cheeses are great. The goat cheese has three layers: a dry, wrinkled exterior, a thin layer of rich goo, and a chalky center. It has a grassy flavor, and its aftertaste weirdly reminds me of peanut butter. We also eat a delicious can of sardines in tomato sauce.

The cow's milk cheese and our sardines.

The hike is exhausting but not too painful. After we collapse in our room in tiny Saint-BenoƮt-des-Ondes, we go out to sit outside in a bar drinking Perrier.

For dinner, we go to a restaurant we've had our eye on since passing it on our hike. It's the store/restaurant of an oyster farm. We have a dozen oysters, mussels with fries, and a bottle of Breton cider. The only thing on the menu besides seafood is the fries. They're also the only thing we have that isn't great, perhaps not by coincidence. Our mussels don't come with forks. From watching other people, we figure out that we should use a empty mussel shells as tongs to pick out mussels and carry them to our mouths.

The cider is delicious. It comes in a 750 ml bottle and is only 4.5% alcohol. It's dry, but not completely so, and it still resembles juice. It's quite fizzy with a light but interesting flavor.

1 comment:

Lindsay said...

Our server that night actually did bring out little forks for us, but warned us that they were ONLY for the oysters! We did not dare use them for anything else after that.

But actually the mussel-shell-as-tongs method works much better than a fork anyway, so it was a good learning experience.