October 26, 2011

Calvados

la Manche

It's so exciting when a place exceeds all of your (already high) expectations. Calvados, one of the three  departments in Basse Normandie, did just that.
And then some!




NormandyNormandy
MooNormandy Cow

First there's the scenery
Lush green pastures, picture-perfect postcard villages awash in blooming hydrangeas, geraniums and dahlias, old stone houses wrapped in vibrant red and orange autumn leaves and vast, sandy beaches. And those cows!

Then there's the food. My god, the food!
I knew that Normandy is famous for its cream, butter and cheese, but nobody ever told us about the ice cream. Every flavor we tasted was seriously rich and delicious.
Our arrival also coincided with the beginning of scallop season. Big, sweet coquilles Saint-Jacques were available at the port, fresh off the boats from the fishermen and women who had been out in the Channel that morning. Quickly sautéed and enjoyed with leeks and cream, bien sûr, and a glass of cold Chardonnay in our gîte's little kitchen. Sublime!

Scallops

And I can't forget to mention the local apéritif, Pommeau. I'm not really a fan of the region's famous apple brandy, Calvados, but love Pommeau.
(there's also a cheese matured in Pommeau, which is truly amazing)

Normandy Cheeses

Most importantly though, were the people. So friendly, so welcoming and so happy to share their corner of Normandy with us.
Calvados is a region we will happily return to.

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15 comments:

Bienvenue chez French Girl in Seattle... said...

What can I say? You made me homesick. I love that area too. Great job reporting and beautiful pictures. Veronique (French Girl in Seattle)

spacedlaw said...

I love that region too. It would be the (painful) death of me if I were to live there...

MilkJam said...

yea~!! so glad you enjoyed your time in my neck of the woods :) It really is a beautiful region but don't tell too many people cause we try to keep it a secret! ;-)

Sharon T said...

Sounds so wonderful! I am a fan of Calvados brandy, but have tasted Pommeau as well...so tasty! The cheese sounds amazing, and the scallops...By the way, love your boots!

Anonymous said...

Looks so charming! Those cheeses are mouthwateringly tempting! Did you enjoy your break from the south?

Jean said...

Wonderful photos and great boots !!

Loulou in France said...

Véronique
Sorry I made you homesick. Guess you'll have to come back to France soon.

spacedlaw
A painful, yet enjoyable and delicious death.

Karina
Oops. I think I just told a few people.
:)
Should I delete this post?

Loulou in France said...

Sharon
It was gastronomic heaven, that's for sure!

Anon
Yes, it was a wonderful break. Sometimes it is nice to get away to see things at home with a new perspective.

Jean
Thanks! Glad you like them. They're so comfortable!

cheryl said...

Wonderful Post. I love the shells. They are like God's jewels of the sea.

croquecamille said...

Those shells piled up are amazing. And it looks like you really lucked out with the weather!

SE said...

Sooo beautiful! The thing I notice most in your photos is the everyday beauty in all the towns and villages. While I'm sure there are areas of large cities that aren't so pretty (and not worthy of posting)it makes me sad that here in the States creating beauty in our public areas is considered frivolous. For a new bridge they're building here in Seattle, one of the city officials said, "no, it's not pretty- but we know the taxpayers don't want us wasting money on that." Made me want to cry. Thanks for all the gorgeous photos that show other attitudes!

Andi said...

I have been in Normandy several times but have yet to get to Calvados - I am afraid the hubby would buy us out of house and home!

Loulou in France said...

cheryl
I love those shells too. Such beautiful colors!

Camille
We did get lucky with the weather. I think it only rained one day.

SE
That is sad!
Fortunately aesthetics are very important here in France.
Glad you enjoy the photos.

Andi
You MUST go! Just hide your husband's wallet. :)

Kate said...

The scenery's great and all, but the boots are better!

Loulou in France said...

Kate
Thanks! I LOVE those boots.