Saturday, August 21, 2010

L'Auberge Carmel

Getting away for a "change of scenery" recharges the soul.  I took a 4-day driving trip thru our bountiful central valley to arrive at a coastal town called Carmel-by-the Sea.  Stayed at Relais et Chateaux branded abode called L'Auberge Carmel.  

What a delightful and welcoming inn.   Well worth the fare as 5-star luxury accommodations, European breakfast and service fees included.   The staff couldn't have been more helpful with any whims or wants.  Now to the cuisine at their intimate restaurant, Aubergine.

Brilliant young, charming chef, Christophe Grosjean prepared 2 different tasting menus as if he had just picked the produce from his garden and stepped off local sea boat with the daily catch.   Fresh, fresh, fresh is his middle name.   Creative cuisine, well balanced flavors with color and textures, artifully plated and so refreshing I can't say enough.  Elegant simplicity.  I felt like he was just cooking for me!   Perfect service from the staff.  Lovely wine list, I chose paired wine tasting and champagne.  5-Stars.  Chef Christophe invited me to shop with him at daily Farmer's Market on my next trip!   So cool.

Took time to visit the Monterey Bay Aquarium, an absolute must see.   And finally the scenic Pacific ocean drive down Highway 1 to Big Sur.   I'm so relaxed and mellow..........Ahhhhhh.

Got reconnected with Carmel therapist, Dr. Anne Marie Power who's family (living in Paris) emotionally supported me 35 years ago while attending Le Cordon Bleu, Paris.   A charming lady who's support contributed to my culinary success.  A wonderful vacation and memorable reunion.  Thanks Annie.

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