Monthly Archives: June 2024

June 22nd, 2024-Medival Town Provins UNESCO’s World Heritage List

Visiting Provins was a captivating experience for me that bought medieval history to life. The town’s architectural splendor, historical significance, and cultural vibrancy provide a comprehensive understanding of its whole in medieval Europe. The preserved structures and ongoing cultural practices serve as tangible connections to the past, emphasizing the importance of maintaining such heritage sites. I think this place not only educated visitors about medieval urbanism but also inspires an appreciation for the rich tapestry of human history.

However, the designation of Provins as a UNESCO World Heritage site highlights its exceptional value as a representation of medieval trade and commerce. The town’s well-preserved urban fabric and authentic building offer a vivid glimpse into its storied past. In addition, this place offers a remarkable widow into the past, making it a must-visit for anyone interested in history, architecture, and culture. However, I think the experience underscores the importance of preserving historical sites, as they continue to educate and inspire future generations.

*I thank Cathy for making me company today!

Day 12(6/20/24)

Today group A went to the Ritz hotel for their pastry class. After they finished group B picked them up at the Ritz and headed towards the Louvre to find a quick lunch before meeting up with the professors. Professor Zinder led the Belly of Paris tour which touched on the history of Paris and how in medieval times Paris was an enclosed city by a wall called Wall of Philip, which wasn’t as big as Paris is today. We passed several famous restaurants and an old market area by the Eglise Saint Eustache. This market was once the largest markets in Paris, now it is the international market of Rungis. We ended the tour at Stohrer one of the oldest patisseries in Paris, opened in 1730 by one of King Louis the 15ths pastry chefs and ate baba rum as well as some chocolate eclairs. After being dismissed, some of my classmates and I went back to the church area to shop at the flea market.

Day 11: Today we were separated into groups A and B for the first part of the day. While group A went to The Ritz For the pastry class and hotel tour, group B had their mornings free and it’ll be vise versa for tomorrow. This said, a couple of students took advantage of the time and revised for future presentations that’ll be scheduled later this week, while I took the opportunity to go on a solo adventure for fresh baguettes around the neighborhood. When the time came, we had group presentation for Arrodissement 9th Palais Garnier- 1875 Opera House. Afterwards we headed down to Brasserie Des Prés for the restaurant tour where we were able to learn about the differences between them and other brasseries. Overall we all enjoyed coming back together as one whole group after being separated in the mornings and having free time.

Day 10- 6/18/24

IMG_4774Today we split into groups and went on a macaron tour with our guide Johnny. We visited  Richart, Laduree, Thevenin, George Larnicol, and Mulot. These are the flavors I tried in order of the shops we visited: blueberry, passion fruit, praline, bergamot, and raspberry. We each got one macaron per store and then sat on the grass of Jardin du Luxembourg and compared them together. The passion fruit from Laduree was my favorite. Afterward, we all reconvened in the breakfast room at the hotel for a wine tasting with Tanisha Townsend. She tested our knowledge and made the experience very fun and interactive. IMG_4770

Photo Collage

Our day began approximately at 6:45 today when we loaded onto a bus and made our way to Champagne, France—a special thank you to our sponsor, Julia Child Foundation, for today’s excursion. We were able to take advantage of visiting two separate wineries, both known for being family-owned vineyards. Our first stop was at the Champagne Duval-Leroy vineyards. The director, who overlooks all the vineyards, had us walk into some of the vineyards to learn a bit more about the winery’s history & viticulture background and how climate has influenced the growing seasons of the grapes. On the walk over, I didn’t include him in the pictures because I forgot, but I named a snail I found and took photos of the snail with flowers. Later on, I felt slightly guilty for ordering the escargot.

Lunch was a great and well-needed break between the two tours, as it was a few hours for the first tour, and I accidentally forgot to bring some breakfast. I enjoyed the escargot with scrambled eggs, I believe it was the best I’ve tried! This cod filet fell apart on the fork and melted in your mouth with the perfect contrast of the crunchy fried exterior. It was finished with a pannacotta topped with wild berries that complimented the lightness of the panna cotta.

Our Champagne tasting in the Duval-Leroy was an experience I would never forget. I’ve tasted the difference in the “cru” wines, from Premier to Gran, and had more Photo Collageexperience with the tasting process. As gorgeous as the facilities were at the Duval-Leroy, the second vineyard, Champagne Geffroy Winery, was a more intimate experience. It felt very personable and way more inviting for questions and learning about the winery passed down through a few generations. Something interesting is that the family’s second daughter is currently intrigued by traveling, exploring different reds worldwide, and looking for ways to improve her family’s vineyard.

I went to Sainte-Chapelle with Daniel in the afternoon. It was definitely much needed because I was feeling homesick. The chapel was very beautiful, and there was an indescribable feeling once you stepped inside.

After visiting the chapel, we walked around and met up with some friends. We did some shopping around arrondissement 1 area, which had a lot of thrift stores. Today was just what I needed to feel refreshed and ready for the week ahead.

Today was a lovely mellow and exciting day with friends, I headed out of the hotel in the early afternoon after getting ready with Deysi, Daniel, Lesli, and Bryn. The weather was chilly, sometimes windy, sometimes rain, and mostly cloudy with a sprinkle of sun here and there. we headed to the Jardin du Plantes and walked around. there were fewer flowers than expected but it was most likely because of the unpredictable weather. we walked into their free exhibition of mineralogy where we found giant magical crystals to look through. right after we just headed out to the streets, looking for shops and exploring the 5th arrondissement and what it offered. after some shopping, we headed to the folie crab to have my first seafood boil and i would give it a decent 7/10.  The low score is for the service but the food was good. It was spicy and juicy and taught me lessons of patience. We then headed to a cute Peruvian place that sold good empanadas. We then rode towards the train to catch our amazing boat ride across the Seine River. The place were we saw the Eiffel Tower shine.

Day 6 (June 14th) CERPOC

June 14th,2024

Wow! What a commute! 3 trains. Today we went to our CERPOC cooking class. This was the last day of our first week and it was certainly showing on people’s faces in the morning but we persevered! This was one of the activities I was most excited about as I deeply miss being in the kitchen.

Ettiene was the director and gave us a back story of the CERPOC program. It used to be just a program for catering but over 50 years has opened up to other disciplines such as butchery and pizza making. We met

Our chef and went on to make quenelles (pillowy fish balls in the shape of an oval) in a lobster based cream sauce garnished with asparagus, whipped arugula espuma, microgreens and carrot puree. We also made a composed salad of artichoke hearts, pickled onions, asparagus stems, olive oil and salt. It had been a while since I’d de-choked an artichoke so I really had to dust off the cobwebs! The dishes came out great and we were treated to a lovely lunch with wine and dessert, courtesy of the CERPOC staff and the students who were completing their dining room class. In the end their hospitality was taken one step

Further when they surprised us with commemorative diploma’s certifying out training in the master class. We worked hard  but the feeling of a job well done afterwards is always unbeatable!

(pictures pending)

Day 2 of the Program – (Marché d’Aligré)

Today we meet Professor Zinder at Ledru-Rollin.  She briefly explained the history of the location.  This location had been the site of various wood working craftsman.  To date there are still landmarks that identify the trade.  Professor Zinder pointed out the sign “Ebenisterie D’Art Rinck” one of the last remaining signs identifying the former tradesman.  Following this introduction we went to blé sucré where she explain the history of the croissant.  Afterwards we went to Marché d’Aligré market which is the location of three street markets.  One being an outdoor flea market, another being an fruit market and the last one was an indoor market.  We compared the prices of the items from the stands.  Next we took a tour of the Place de la Batille and Place des Vosges.

First day in Paris – (Eiffel Tower)

Today we went on a tour to the Eiffel Tower led by Professor Zinder where she told us about the history of the Eiffel Tower and how it came to be. We also walked around the neighboring area and observed the Seine River. Lastly, we stopped to talk and introduce ourselves a little more to  everyone and we got to learn about Professor Zinder and Professor Abreu as well.