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                                                   May / June 2006

                       Now you have an even wider choice for places to stay in France!

                              Please Welcome Five New Members


We are very pleased to add five new member properties
to the au Château web site, giving travelers a wider range of
fine accommodations from which to choose.  And, you will
notice that these are five very diverse residences, from
a country manor house to an elegant château to an 
Italianate mansion...something for every taste.

Château Lagorce in Bordeaux

Château Lagorce

This spacious château is available for rent, and it would make a great base for a group of friends or a large family who wants to explore Bordeaux wine country.   It's not far from St-Emilion, the Médoc peninsula and the Atlantic coast and will accommodate up to 37 people in fifteen en suite guest rooms.  There are two options:  you can rent 10 bedrooms or 15, depending upon the requirements of your group.  And, it is also the perfect venue for a wedding ~ the ceremony can take place in the incredible medieval French chapel on the grounds, and up to 100 guests can enjoy an outdoor celebration as there are a range of facilities available to make the wedding and reception exceptional.  Please visit Château Lagorce on our site today where you can see photos, read all about it, and even book online!

 Château de Chambost in the Rhône

Château de Chambost

Near Lyon, the gastronomic capital of France, Château de Chambost has been in the same family for centuries.  It boasts a fine 16th century dining room where guests will enjoy incredible meals.  In fact, in October the owners are offering French Cooking and Language classes for those who are interested in perfecting their French while learning more about Lyonnais cuisine.  There is much to do and see in both Lyon and the area's Roman center, Vienne.  The château has five en suite guest rooms, spectacular views of the countryside and warm and friendly owners.  This is a superb choice of lodging for those planning visits to the Rhône region of France.  A click on the name above will take you to their au Château pages.

 Château de Détilly in the Loire

Château de Détilly

Château de Détilly located in the midst of the grand châteaux of the Loire, is a beautiful and appealing French château with exquisite interiors and acres of parkland with a lake, swimming pool, tennis court and so much more!  Location is everything, so guests will be pleased at the easy access to the Loire châteaux as well as regional vineyards and historic towns.   The château can be rented in its entirety, or, when available, the Coach House can be reserved as a self-catering accommodation.  With a total of eleven guest rooms, almost all en suite, the property can comfortably house 24 people.  A lovely Romanesque chapel is perfect for weddings or baby Christenings, and concierge service is available to assist with event planning.  This is certainly one château you should consider for your next visit to the Valley of the Kings of France!   And, you can book online on our web site with a click of your mouse! 

Château de la Charmeraie in the Rhône

Château de la Charmeraie

For a stay in France's Rhône département with an Italian flair, you might want to consider Château de la Charmeraie, a stunning Florentine-style residence not far from Lyon and St-Etienne.  The lovely terraced gardens, incredible swimming pool and grand vistas over the countryside will captivate even the most worldly traveler.  Guests enjoy fine cuisine in the magnificent dining room and can retreat to elegant and luxurious en suite bedrooms at the end of a busy day.  The château is air-conditioned, so summer visits can be quite comfortable.  The lake is stocked with carp and pike, so you fishermen out there will truly enjoy some time at Château de la Charmeraie.  Do visit them on au Château soon to see all the amenities and read about the local sites and attractions.

[Photos copyrighted and the property of each owner.  All rights reserved.]

French Quiz 61

Define the culinary terms . . .

        (1)  blanquette           (a)  pork or poultry cooked and preserved in its own fat
         (2)  cru                      (b)  meat cooked rare
            (3)  fumé                  (c)  steamed in juice over a low fire
             (4)  Lyonnaise             (d)  cooked with onions
                (5)  en croute            (e)  in butter, sprinkled with lemon
                  (6)  farci                   (f)  white meat stew in a cream sauce
                     (7)  braisé                (g)  raw
                       (8)  confit                (h) smoked
                         (9)  saignant            (i)  stuffed
                           (10)  Meunière         (j)  wrapped in pastry and baked


You will find the correct answer at the end of this newsletter.

Villes et Villages de France

 . . . we hope to tempt you to visit these marvelous places
when you are roaming through the French countryside.

A cobbled lane in St-Cirq Lapopie

Saint Cirq Lapopie is a village high on a hillside overlooking the River Lot.
Its winding cobbled streets, unique shops and cozy restaurants make 
it the ideal place to spend the day.    It certainly seems that the townspeople
take great pride in every inch of the village ~ lovely plantings, well-maintained
residences and visitor-friendly signage all play a part in the good feeling one
gets after only a few minutes here!  Parking is provided in a large lot just out of
town, and the walk into the village is easy and offers a panoramic view of 
the river valley and small farms below.  All in all, Saint Cirq Lapopie is
a memorable and charming part of any visit to the département of the Lot,
and it is no wonder that it is designated one of the 
"Most Beautiful Villages of France".

[Photo copyrighted by Cold Spring Press 2005-2006.  All rights reserved.]

Sponsoring this issue . . .

Jill Butler's Web Site

Jill Butler is an artist, a Francophile and she produces lovely,
artistic dinnerware.  She's written three books 
and lived for fourteen years in Paris and Normandy.
This is the link to her official web site, and a visit will help you to 
get to know Jill, her invaluable guidebooks and to shop 
for her unique and beautiful French-inspired tableware products. 

[Artwork used for banner copyrighted by Jill Butler.  All rights reserved.]

Prehistoric & Medieval Southwest France Tour

now accepting reservations !

The caves at Lascaux IIThe date is October 1 - 8, 2006, and the location is the Dordogne of beautiful southwest France.  France's Impressions, a licensed and experienced tour operator in cooperation with Sally Evans, owner of Le Prieuré au Château de Biron, are offering you 8 exciting days touring their lovely region to see medieval villages, shop in outdoor markets, enjoy wine tastings, and, of course, explore the sites of prehistoric man that dot the region.  Included in those sites will be the Lascaux II caves (pictured here), Font Gaume, Les Eyzies, the Peche Merle caves, Rouffignac and much, much more!

Accommodations will be first class in the newly renovated and redecorated  Prieuré in the picturesque hilltop village of Biron.  Magnificent views, comfortable en suite guest rooms and a charming hostess will make your stay memorable.  All breakfasts, dinners, ground transportation for the tour as well as pick up and drop off at Bordeaux, entrance and guide fees are included.  (Airfare and transportation to Bordeaux is not included.)

For more details including prices and a summary of the daily activities planned, contact us very soon.  The deadline to sign up is fast approaching.  The maximum number of participants is 10, so don't wait too long and miss out!    Contact us by email at

French Quiz 62

 Match the event with the year . . .

                       (1)  Joan of Arc is born                        (a)  1257
                          (2)  1st hot air balloon launch               (b)  1957
                             (3)  French women get right to vote      (c)  1412
                                (4)  Camus wins Nobel prize                 (d)  1783
                                   (5)  Sorbonne founded                       (e)  1945 


You will find the correct answer at the end of this newsletter.

 Easy Recipe:   Sorbet aux Poires

 and Cooking Class Special Offer!

Truly quick and easy, this recipe is courtesy of Susan Herrmann Loomis, author of On Rue Tatin, and owner of the cooking school of the same name in Normandy.  Before we get into the recipe, we would like to mention an incredible opportunity Susan is currently offering: 

On Rue Tatin cover art copyrighted by Susan Herrmann Loomis.  All rights reserved.]

Susan has decided to offer a HALF-PRICE SALE on her first two classes of the season at On Rue Tatin, the week of April 30-May 5, 2006 and the week of May 14-19, 2006.  Check out the  details at

Take advantage of this one-time special to experience the richness of cooking at On Rue Tatin.  To sign up with their online form, click on
For more information, or to sign up, contact, and ask for Tricia Boyer.

Susan says:

"On Rue Tatin is so much more than just a cooking school. It is a unique and  hand-tailored opportunity for you to get inside my world of fine food and  ingredients and warm, talented, and generous people. When you come to  spend five days with me, you get an inside look at France with all of its quality  and richness, its old-world quality, and its youthful dynamism.

 When you leave On Rue Tatin, you will do so with the confidence and passion
 to cook for yourself, your friends and your family ... I promise!"

Now for this issue's recipe.  You will need 1 1/2 pounds of aromatic pears that are ripe, peeled and cored, 5 tablespoons of sugar, 2 tablespoons freshly squeezed lemon juice and 1 egg white.

Purée the pears in a food processor until smooth.  Add the sugar and lemon juice, process until combined, the add the egg white and process just until incorporated and the mixture becomes just the slightest bit foamy ~ this will take less than a minute.

Chill the mixture for at least 2 hours.  Transfer to an ice cream maker and freeze according to the manufacturer's directions. 

Makes 4 to 6 servings.   Bon appétit!

[Recipe from On Rue Tatin ~ Living and Cooking in a French Town, a book by 
Susan Herrmann Loomis, published in 2001 by Broadway Books, a division
of Random House, Inc., ISBN 0-7679-0454-0.]

Order your copy of this book today. 


We hope you have enjoyed au Château News
If you have,  please forward it to friends and 
encourage them to subscribe.  It's FREE!

[The answers to 
Quiz 61 - 1f, 2g, 3h, 4d, 5j, 6i, 7c, 8a, 9b, 10 e.
Quiz 62 -  1c, 2d, 3e, 4b, 5a]

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