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Hiking on Corsica

Corsica is in a sense France at its finest, although that phrase would no doubt make any self-respecting Corsican pull out his vendetta knife and stick you like a wild mountain pig. The Corsicans view themselves as an entirely different (and superior) people from the French, and are famously and fiercely independent. It’s more or […]

Captain Caveman

Sometimes when I’m hungry and wondering what restaurant will suit for the evening, I don’t go to a restaurant. I go to a Cave. A favourite blog tells me that everything cool in Paris was made popular by Americans and is mostly manufactured by the Chinese. That really made me laugh. But while it may hold true […]

Beneath the Pic du Canigou

‘The Pic du Canigou is my Eiffel Tower’, a winemaker in Roussillon told me; it overlooks the whole scene like the beacon of French Catalunia. The slopes and valleys around this famous Pyrenean peak make up one of my favourite areas in France to explore. And that’s saying something. The best time to pop down […]

Billions of Blistering Barnacles

What qualities are hardest to find in Parisian restaurants? Reasonable prices. Service with a smile. Flexible opening hours. Chez Casimir has them all—and they serve brunch! You’ll think you’re in America. Until you taste the food, that is. Vive la France! In fact I’m talking about two places: the side-by-side Chez Michel and Chez Casimir, […]

Dirty Weekend

You’d have to be a real stick in the mud not to enjoy a weekend in one of Un Lit Au Pré’s safari-style tents, pitched uniquely in selected organic farms around the UK, France and Holland. Known as Feather Down Farms in the UK, this is a company that has the art of roughing it […]

Café Constant

Christian Constant is to bistro cooking what James Brown is to soul. Trace the lineage of his sous-chefs and their sous-chefs from his time as chef at the Hotel Crillon, and you’ll find all the best 40 EUR meals in Paris, scattered around in some of the most unlikely places. If things go well, I’m […]

Ark Imitates Life

Deyrolle is Paris’ famous taxidermy shop, where luminescent green Polynesian butterflies line the walls and stare down on stuffed jaguars and polar bears (all of which are for sale). And it famously burned down in February 2008. Thanks to a public auction and a very wealthy owner, but mostly due to the fact that the shop is as dear […]

Frankie Goes to Hollywood

It turns out billionaires haven’t changed that much. I’m 24 years old, I’m richer than God and I want a massive house. François 1er’s Chateau de Chambord in the Loire Valley is as Californian as architectural folly gets. The guide books will tell you otherwise, but if you really want to understand the chateaux of […]

Brancusi Doozy

One of the things I love about Paris is that it simultaneously manages to be both conspicuous and coy. In a sense, it’s the world’s most obvious place—glaringly gorgeous and positively popping out of its Haussmannian dress. And yet, it’s a city that keeps plenty secret, holding you slightly at bay which, of course, keeps […]

Kicking 2013 Into Gear

You may (or may not) have noticed that we haven’t posted a single new Sounder article since the tail end of 2012. What can I say, we’ve been busy planning a lot of trips. I hasten to add that our long-time, ever-steady and always-reliable Sounder editor, Amy Smithers, skipped town a month ago to travel […]

Where to go in 2013

Let’s go out on a limb and predict that the world isn’t going to end tomorrow. Christmas and New Year’s will come and go, and then those of us in the northernmost parts of the northern hemisphere will enter what one Trufflepig planner calls “the long, dark tea time of the soul.” Give your soul […]

Passages of Paris

Cast aside your umbrella, intrepid shoppers of Paris. Even as November’s freezing rain pours down, you can stroll the streets of the Right Bank undrenched; shopping, dining and even staying overnight in the passageways and galleries of Paris. From Stella McCartney to wine bars, teeny tiny antiques shops and seconds art book stores, there are […]

Pool Party: Corsica

If you think about it, privacy is the ultimate luxury. Now that you’re a grown-up, you don’t have to share your toys anymore, and how lovely not to share your pool with anyone, either. Where:  Domaine de Murtoli, Corsica, France Why: Yes, there are some other people staying on this sprawling estate in the unspoiled French […]

On My Plate: Alsace

Warning: Do not operate heavy machinery after eating this dish. Where: Riquewihr, France What: Potatoes with bacon and melted Munster cheese. This is one of those drop-dead simple dishes you could so easily make at home. Except for the fact that your potatoes, bacon and Munster won’t be as divine as they are in this […]

On My Plate: France

There’s something curiously memorable about the cash and grab picnic. You know the kind I mean. Visit the local market, buy whatever random ingredients catch your eye, and then find a place in a park to park it and pork out. Where: Cordes sur Ciel in Southwestern France. What: Le pique-nique. A wheel of bread large enough to […]

You Don’t Know Jack

But you should. Jack Dancy is one of Trufflepig’s founders and the man knows France like no one’s business. Conde Nast Traveler recently named him as one of their Top Travel Specialists and they’ve only picked 133 worldwide, so it’s pretty cool that he’s been cited as the Gallic go to. While it’s true you […]