April 10, 2007
A Day Out in Béziers
We go to Béziers a lot.
It is the "big city" where we go to run endless bureaucratic errands, visit the hairdresser's, for doctor's appointments, to buy impossible-to-find-elsewhere Asian groceries at an Asian épicerie, to drool over shoes and purses at little boutiques (that would be me, not my husband), to buy any necessary DIY stuff at Castorama, to eat some delicious crêpes or Chinese food and to browse at a wonderful little English bookshop, named, appropriately, Le Bookshop.
My ideal day in Béziers would begin around 10:30 in the morning. From our village it takes about 45 minutes to get there once you wind your way into the center and find parking. There are some charming little café's in the old part of town where I like to have a noisette and a pain au chocolat before running errands and window shopping.
First to Monoprix to see what's new and buy any make-up or hair products before heading down the Allées Paul Riquet to Galleries Lafayette to browse their shoes, purses and clothes.
Crossing les Allées, I head into the maze of little streets in the old quarter where I browse in shops like l'Occitane en Provence, Mango, paper shops, a shop full of wonderful kitchen utensils, pet shops, shoe shops and chocolatiers.
Le Bookshop is tucked away on one of these little streets. The owner, Deborah Bragan-Turner, sells English language books and greeting cards and the upper floor of the shop is a sweet little children's book section. Browsing through books is one of my favorite things to do, so I could easily spend an afternoon here!
Just up the street is les Halles, the covered food market. This noisy, smelly place is a fabulous French food shopping experience.
The ideal day also includes lunch. Partly because most shops are closed from noon to 2 pm so it's either eat or go home, and partly because there are some great little restaurants in Béziers.
Before I know it, my day comes to an end and it's time to have one last little coffee and head home.
We're going to Béziers again this Thursday. I got a letter in the mail on Friday that requires yet another trip to deal with bureaucratic incompetence. One benefit of our trip will be lunch at La Table Bretonne, a little crêperie with a beautiful, sunny terrace that looks out on the Gothic Cathedral Saint Nazaire. The savory crêpes are made using blé noir (buckwheat) and dozens of sweet crêpes are offered for dessert. The owner's, Jean-Pierre and Agnès Ponthieux, are a delightful, friendly couple and the restaurant is one of our favorite's.
La Table Bretonne
21, rue Viennet
18, rue des anciens Combattants
04.67.36.67.82 Pin It