The French Restaurant


This is an account of how a perfect meal can make your holidays short and your return home a week earlier than your intention…


Our small group crosses the street and enters in the most perfect restaurant you can imagine. We are greeted by a French and German speaking chef and his English and German speaking wife. Every single detail tell us of a divine gourmet evening. And we are not disappointed at all.


It all starts with a chef made truffe and mushroom volaille terrine, followed by a lobster cappuccino soup. As we have been informed that the Strasbourg Charollais’ meat is the main attraction on the menu, we all order fillet. Trusting the wonderful couple receiving us, the selected wine is a magnificent red Bordeaux.


With my fillet came also nicely cooked green beans and a tasty mushroom pudding. It was so good I couldn’t stop eating it. I guessed it was made of bread, mushrooms and truffe, but somehow the texture was unknown to me.


One of the lucky ones sharing the same meal confessed how particular she was with some sorts of food, like rabbit and venison, and how she was getting used to eat them in this place. At that moment it crossed my mind that I could be eating a pudding of Charollais’ brain soaked in the peppery, truffy, mustardy, creamy sauce.


Suddenly in panic, instead of asking what I was really eating, I stopped digesting the meal. I never digested the ten assorted desserts. I never digested the green apple sorbet with Calvados. I never digested the brandy offered by the lady of the house. I never digested the next morning eggs. I never digested what I ate during the day, especially the marzipan I discovered inside a chocolate shop near the most charming market. Above all, I never digested all kind of pastas I had for dinner at some Italian restaurant full of Antonios.


Two hours after this Italian banquet and one hour after a visit to German friends where we tasted Portuguese soft cheese, German walnuts from their fields and a Chianti – all this never digested too – it all exploded inside out with a persistent bitter taste of mushrooms. Just in case I had doubts about the reason why I was vomiting and vomiting…


Only four days later, already in Mozambique, I started to feel myself again. I can say that my stomach followed the recent monetary crash. Tuesday (January 22) it started slowly reacting, like the main world stock exchanges.


I’m joking now, but I was really sick. Paul believes the mushroom pudding explanation because he saw my disgusted expression at the end of the meal. It could be the Italian dinner, the wines or the German virus too. Who knows?


“You had the face of some of my colleagues after the German virus!” someone occasionally diagnosed.


Whatever it was, nobody deserves it!