Friday, June 28, 2013
The restaurant has a courtyard for outdoor eating, an upper room for groups and a large, welcoming dining room on the ground floor. You can eat à la carte but who needs to with a 13 euro two course lunch that includes a glass of wine. Plentiful main courses and desserts from a choice of two items each. Today I had pork and chorizo sauté served with aubergine two ways, salad, tomato and their gorgeous home-made chips. The iles flottantes dessert managed to be substantial and light as air at the same time, with a sea of creme anglaise to splash about in.
Chef Christophe Getin has an imaginative way with vegetables - unusual over here - yet doesn't mess about too much with the high quality meat and fish. Staff are young and enthusiastic, the tables well-spaced and the period decor unspoilt.
I won't be eating elsewhere in Quimper for a long time to come.
Chez Max - Cour Jacob, 8 rue du Parc
02 29 40 10 20
Sunday, June 23, 2013
The allure of royal, or imperial, souvenirs is not a new thing. After the brief visit of Emperor Napoleon III and his wife Eugenie to Pontivy in 1858, the 'vase de nuit' (chamber-pot, rather than 'night-jar' which you sometimes see in translations!!) used by the Empress during her night's stay, became a much sought-after item, and not merely for its quality English porcelain. But the very nature of 19th century politics is seismic shifts. Fifty years later, the pot was on sale in a second-hand shop in Vannes.
The Empress was good enough to promise funds for a new church in the town, having been asked pretty bluntly by the priest during the celebratory banquet organised for the imperial couple. How pleased she was to be represented in gargoyle form on the facade, we'll never know. And sometimes it is better not to know things, especially endless detail about the lives of people in whom we have no interest at all.