I’m itching to travel to a place that is not hot and sticky and smelling of peking duck and garbage (I can only speak for my neighborhood. Maybe your neighborhood smells like croissants and fresh linens). I dream of a place by the sea, perhaps the Cote d’Azure, where soft breezes carry the scent of wild lavender and scrubby cliffs fall into sandy beaches that are dotted with beautiful people and beach restaurants. Yes, beach restaurants. Not the kind that sell fried clams (although I love those). I’m talking about those beach restaurants in the Cote d’Azure where bikinis are de riguer so long as your designer sunglasses are firmly in place and bottles of rose flow endlessly and there is nothing to do but share food and drink with your friends until you’re ready to jump in the water and/or pass out on the beach*.
*the word yacht is often substituted here.
Oh, wait, I’ve been to this fantasy land. Last summer I went to St. Tropez for a wedding, and while there is a lot I love to hate about St. Tropez- scene-y, crowded, expensive, ridiculous- it’s home to a lunch spot that beats all lunch spots in the world. It’s called Club 55. Yes, that club, the one that sits on Pampelonne Beach where Brigitte Bardot became famous while filming “And God Created Woman.”
Strip away all this, and here is what Club 55 is: essentially a thatch roof over a bunch of tables. Everyone orders the crudite. It’s a rustic wood tub filled with the freshest and most flavorful vegetables you can imagine, along with some hard-boiled eggs, and enough fresh country bread to carb up for days. Entrees are an afterthought, although I vaguely remember mussels. Lots of wine. Lots of fun. I came across these photos from my lunch last summer and thought you would enjoy.