The Local Beat: A Dordogne Questionnaire

by Ginevra on July 6, 2011

The Local Beat: A Dordogne Questionnaire


Lolita Suarez (LS), is the local Spanish import.  She has lived here for nearly 40 years in the house that Claude, her husband built on land owned by his parents. They raised their daughter, Nathalie here, and it can justifiably be said that she is as much French now as she is Spanish.  LS loves decorating her small home with objets she finds at the Brocantes and Vide Greniers she loves to frequent.  She has a great eye for a bargain and is a master at turning what to all appearance is ‘trash’ into treasure. She keeps many design and interiors magazines on hand; creates mise en scene with her brocante finds, and sometimes takes on larger projects, like restoring old armoires.

L.S. reading one of her favorite interiors magazines: Campagne Decoration

What is your favorite cafe/bistrot/restaurant in Eymet/Bergerac?
Eymet: Restaurant – La Cour d’Eymet and  Les Pieds sur Terre, the first for its elegant meals in a refined setting, the second for its tasty and inexpensive plats du jour. Bergerac: Tea Salons – Salon de Thé Victoria and Côté de Noix – both are charming, both offer a lovely salad or a nice little patisserie to go with your French tea (at Cote de Noix the tea is Marriage Freres!).

What is your favorite produce to buy at the June Market in Eymet/Bergerac?
Eymet – Strawberries, sweet and good right now, baby peas, spring onions. The same at Bergerac.

Do you prefer Foie Gras de Canard or Foie Gras d’Oie?
I hate foie gras! I’m Spanish and I don’t have the same taste as a person from the Dordogne! Sorry! However, I love pomme de terre sarladaises (potatoes fried in duck fat with onions and mushrooms) and cepes (mushrooms from this area).

What is your favorite market town?
Issigeac, on Sunday.

Favorite summer brocante?  What do you look for?
La Badie at Monbazillac, the first Sunday in May and Eymet, the second Sunday in June.
I look for something that captures my heart, that I don’t need, but that I can’t live without!

Favorite Interiors magazine?
Campagne Decoration and Maison Chic

Two "mise en scene" that L.S. created in her house

What is your favorite local wine?
Saussignac (sweet white) and a mild red from Duras

Ricard or Lillet?
Neither, really, but if it is a very hot evening, Ricard.

What is your favorite thing to do in the area?
I love to visit chateaux, like Chateau de Beynac, and little villages, and les lavoires (old springs where women used to do their washing).

What is your favorite village to visit in the Dordogne?
Soumensac is adorable, but its empty.  Caux de Clarence has a ruin of a chateau that a Dutch designer purchased and has completely restored. He has created a kitchen garden like the monks used to have…  Each year, for the “Jour de Patrimoine” (first Sunday in September) he opens his chateau to the public and is very hospitable – greeting people with champagne and little fruit tarts.

What is the most beautiful region in France?
Dordogne of course! But I also like Luberon, the Ardeche with lots of waterfalls, and Brittany with its little villages, painters’ village, and Concarneau  (a fortified village).

Which is your favorite hypermarche – Carrefour or E.Leclerc?
E.Leclerc, Carrefour is too expensive

If the world was ending and you could only save one French cheese, which one would it be?
Camembert, definitely Camembert.

Worst tourist faux pas? Pet peeve about tourists?
None, I find all the tourists here very nice.  No objections.

Weirdest thing to do in the Dordogne?
To jump out of a plane with a parachute and a strange monsieur on your back.  And also, but this is not weird, just horrible: the zoo at Mescoules (a small zoo with mostly reptiles). What an idea!  Quel horreur!

Start “greeting” kisses on right or left?
On the right, always.  Never more than two.  I have a phobia of three.  In Spain, you never do more than two.  But there are people here who keep going!  Excuse me, but two is enough!



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