MAYBE BECAUSE IT’S SUMMER, or I’m living near the water, or there’s something about the light here on the East End, but lately I find myself drawn to all things Provençal. The South of France is one of my favorite parts of the world, and I haven’t been there in far too long. So I try to replicate the experience in small ways, such as:
- Eating salad Niçoise almost every day, with fennel and Niçoise olives, naturally, and Alziari olive oil (a $20 splurge at Citarella but I was so happy to see it there – it took me instantly back to the famous store in Nice, where they fill customers’ empty bottles with fresh-pressed oil out of huge kegs)
- A little jar of Herbs de Provence, also from Citarella
- Lavender soap, lavender dishwashing liquid, lavender toilet bowl cleaner, etc.
- Intentions of putting a yellow printed table cloth on my round picnic table and spending three hours dining under the trees sometime
- Sunflowers in a vase at all times
- My Bodum French press coffee-maker (the best system I’ve ever found — no more Mr. Coffee for me)
- Van Gogh print of Flowering Gardens at Arles on the kitchen wall
I have no plans to start smoking Gauloises (I did briefly in college) or re-read Peter Mayle any time soon.