Fried shrimp. Part of the Louisiana food orgy. More about that in the next installment.
I'm back! Full of energy and looking radiant (so someone told me this morning) no doubt because of this 6th cleanse. This one was made necessary because of one humdinger of a Louisiana food and beverage, emphasis on beverage, blow-out in late June.
Sure there are many subjects to ponder after such a long absence from the blog, such as the food issues I still face and find annoying and fascinating at the same time. Those include portion control, snacking mindlessly during Bones at my lunch break, and nervous-eating/drinking in large crowds--even in crowds of people I know and love. Some other time perhaps. Today this reboot edition is all about going back to the basics: Austin and France.
You may recall a lot of my writings earlier about France, Paris, and food and Paris, and especially our lovely sister city Angers, which I began exploring back in 2012.
Morning run in Angers, heading up to the steps of St. Maurice Cathedral. May 2016
Now others have discovered Angers and love it as much as I do, and the Austin-Angers connections, collaborations and initiatives are about to bust wide open thanks to the Austin team of Austin Angers Creative and its counterpart in Angers.
"Austin Week" in Angers is the brainchild of Germain Kpakou, a brilliant cultural events dreamer and planner in Angers. The timing is so very right to revisit this blog as this second edition of Austin Week, September 12-18, is set to be even more ambitious than last year (thanks to Germain and his Austin co-conspirator Samantha Phelps), and it is thanks to this blog that I met mastermind Germain in the first place.
Once Germain found me, we started a conversation about gastronomy, natural wine production, and Angers and Austin. And thanks to him and his creative cohorts in Angers, I discovered the best of Angers and made great friends very quickly.
A short one year after its successful first edition, Austin Week this year includes chefs from Austin attending en masse and pop-up meals all over and in Angers' best and funkiest restaurants. This is thanks in large part to Germain's gastronomic collaborator and partner in cultural entrepreneurship, Chef Rémi Fournier, owner of a growing number of restaurants in Angers, including Chez Rémi and Saignant.
But Austin Week is not just about food. Graffiti artists from Austin are going over, as well as sculptors, France-focused business lawyers (yours truly), beverage distributors, realtors, journalists, musicians galore, and a DJ from a certain beloved Austin radio station. And of course yoga instructors and tattoo artists.
Not Angers, but it has an Angers connection. This was the Cannes Film Festival in May. I got to attend thanks to already being in the south of France, and thanks to an Angers friend giving a presentation about his Austin-Angers collaborations in film with Premiers Plans/Austin Film Society. Brother-in-law Tim Grierson was there too, reviewing films and thus on duty all the time. We managed a quick dinner at 10pm after one of his many screenings.
Though I will be focused this Austin Week on my presentations for the technology side of the Austin-Angers connections, on IoT and U.S. market entry for French companies, you can bet I will be hitting as many of those Austin-Angers chef-related food events as they allow me.
All are welcome to make the trek to Angers for Austin Week. The more the merrier. Check out some of my earlier blogs about Angers to start getting excited about this little gem in the Loire Valley. Lovely Angers is a short 1.5 hour TGV ride from Paris and so very easy to navigate. Check out the Austin Angers Creative pages on the Facebook to get the very latest intel about the Austin Week programming.
Hope to see you in Angers!