Thursday, August 29, 2013

Designer gardens in the Loire valley

Today we visited Chateau Chambord in the Loire valley.
The gardens feature installations of art work and display gardens created by various designers each year. We were particularly taken with the beds near the chateau which combined grasses with annuals and perennials in blues, pinks, purples and white.

A large gravelled area was broken up with spheres of irregularly spaced buxus adding contrast in both color, texture and design.
The parklands included touches of whimsy with cleverly suspended works of art and sculpture in sympathetic materials.

Thursday, August 22, 2013

Classic Ralph

On a recent trip to Paris I returned to one of the most beautiful stores, in my opinion, in the world.
From the divine Ralph's courtyard  restaurant filled with plump down filled blue and white cushions and ivy and buxus potted urns to the magnificent oak parquet floors, one is treated to classic American elegance at it's best.

Each floor just gets better,  not to mention the magnificent luxury of the clothing in subtle colors, superb fabrics and timelessly  elegant designs.

The menswear is displayed against oak cabinetry and leather and each room is like walking through a stunning home. If I could move in, I would.

Be sure to drop in if you happen to be visiting  Paris at 173 Boulevard St Germain. 

Friday, August 2, 2013

Winter lunch

Last weekend  I visited The Wild Brumby near Thredbo with a couple of friends. We started the day with a schnapps tasting, then moved on to the Austrian inspired menu.  The service,  food and atmosphere were superb and well worth a visit if you are on your way to the snow. Brad and Monica Spalding, the owners,  ran the ski school in Thredbo for many years and are certainly well known by the locals and  visitors. The atmosphere is warm, relaxed and busy. Just the place to spend a cold winters day in comfort. 

The Menu

Homemade pate – duck liver or local smoked trout with toast

Distiller’s plate - a selection of smallgoods and King Island cheese

Farmer’s Pfandl – german sausage, kassler, kipfler potatoes & sauerkraut

Vego soup – vegetable soup served with baked sour dough

Ruben - pastrami, mustard and sauerkraut on German rye 

Aussie ham sandwich - leg ham, lettuce, cheese, tomato and mustard 

Lamb ragout - slow cooked Monaro lamb with vegetables, served with rice 

German sausages - on sauerkraut with bread and mustard

Spinach & ricotta dumplings – with roasted tomato, garlic and thyme sauce & parmesan 

Schnitzel burger – veal schnitzel, lettuce, cheese, tomato served with wedges

Beef gulasch – high country beef, Austrian gulasch with bread dumplings 

Veal schnitzel – lean, crumbed schnitzel with potato and a green salad

Kassler – pan-fried smoked pork with a rustic mash, sauerkraut and veg 


Austrian Apple Strudel - served with ice-cream and cream 

Sticky-date pudding – served with ice-cream and butterscotch sauce 

Flourless chocolate torte – hazelnut, almond and chocolate 

Lemon gugglhupf – Austrian lemon and almond cake

Cupcakes – vanilla and almond 

Scrolls – hazelnut and cinnamon scrolls

Stained glasshouse cake – mixed fruit and nuts 

Schnappy ice cream – vanilla ice cream served with wildbrumby butterscotch schnapps