In a very un-Australian manner, and despite spending my holiday doing something of a Sydney beach tour, the summer heat has me yearning for some Parisian cool. I am missing the melancholy of that beautiful city, the romantic rustle of wind through the trees, the scent of croissants baking - sneaking up from behind...
Alright. So, what I have actually been thinking about is my wonderful, simple, last meal in Paris. It was very French, but was not heavy on sauces and ingredients that I could not pronounce. There was no culinary trickery. It was vegetable soup followed by cheeses. Oh, those cheeses. Carefully curated and thoughtfully displayed. I paid them the respect they deserved and consumed them in a leisurely twenty minutes, when I could have been done in three.
Half way around the world from Paris, and a few kilometres from me, is The Larder Epicerie Fine in Dulwich Hill, Sydney. A speciality grocer with a (literal) French flavour, which stocks a huge range of fine the products from around the world. A family-owned business, the labour-of-love quality of the store comes from the genuine passion for food and wine of the owners, Dominique and Janette, who having spent time in France struggled to source the type of quality goods The Larder now stocks.
While The Larder stocks an array of speciality goods including pasta, oils, herbs, honey, conserves, as well as gluten-free and organic products, for me, it is the selection of cheeses that is most exciting, having been sourced not only from France, but the best Australia has to offer.
Wait for the cooler months to conjure Parisian memories or pack your beach picnic basket now. Either way, pay The Larder a visit for the delicacies you won't find at your run-of-the-mill supermarket.