Talking about food: PRIMEUR, N1
I love Primeur. I love the wooden floor, where my muddy puppy is at home on, padding his wet paws all around my feet.
I love the golden mustard, velvety chairs. I love the slick look, but cosy feeling that the furniture and colours seem to conjure up. I love the chalk writing on the tables. Primeur is glorious in summer, with doors open; and is light and warm in autumn.
I fail so often at being a grown up, but have in my life the wonderful Josie who walks my puppy when I work, and the lovely Elaine who cleans my house once a week – so I have successfully managed to be middle class, if not entirely grown up. Today I heard my ex-husband is having his second baby. This isn't a life I wanted, or quite possibly he wouldn't be an ex, but I still feel incredibly anxious about this fact, it is another point to prove that I haven't “successfully” grown-up. Therefore my concepts of 'grown-up' are, rather boringly, rooted in societal norms. But, even if I don't meet my perceived ideas of 'grown-up' I am ridiculously spoilt and Primeur reminds me, gently, how I live in this space of huge privilege. I get to eat gorgeous food, in warming environments. And so, in the simple luxury of Primeur I get to appreciate, recognise and enjoy my privilege.
Now lets talk about my common palette. I didn't have my glasses on to read the wine menu on the board and therefore asked for a recommendation. My criteria - a glass of red wine, light, interesting; I had to work later and didn't want to drink anything that would make me nap. I got exactly what I asked for. But I didn't like it. I promise I tried to like it. I ate it with the food we had, sipped it, I thought about it, but I just didn't relish in it. When asked, I gave my honest thoughts, I was gently mocked and very kindly given something else, which I did enjoy.
We also asked for an interesting chardonnay to start, and were given Aymeric Beaufort's Ocre Rouge Chardonnay, from Provence (which is very usual). And why not? California chardonnay is grown in similar climate to Provence, no?
It's not my favourite chardonnay, but it was interesting and delicious. It made us buy, later that week, another chardonnay from nearby location. So with attention and detail, and listening to what we were saying, that lunch has extended my knowledge and pushed my boundaries. It has made me think about wine in a slightly different way. These are things that I want from eating experience. Don't get me wrong, I don't want an education at every turn but I do want to expand my horizons. It's a tricky task of offering comfort and pleasure through food and wine, and also showing something new and exciting and I think that is what Primeur does completely.
The food is always great. Great charcuterie – jamon and jesus. The pork was melt in your mouth and the lentils were a scoop of comfort. The wild mushroom pasta, oh god, earthy and delicate – a plate that grounded you in the real world. I can't remember all the mushrooms, but I do remember the 'trumpets of death', which are such pretty, dark mushrooms, with a lovely texture. And that was it, the textures of the pasta and the different mushrooms with the taste of the earth on my tongue anchored me to reality and made me very pleased to be there. Red wine pear and almond tart – a perfect autumn dessert, buttery, crumbly, a touch of perfume. And of course, all the pretty crockery. What a great post, mud-sodden-walk-in-the-park-with-puppy, lunch. My cockles were warmed indeed!
We ate here on Saturday (lunch) November 22, 2014.