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France Day 6: Free Time in Normandie

K&L gives its buyers a certain amount of paid time to travel the world in search of great new products.  Unfortunately, we've already used up our allotted time. We of course have some paid vacation days we can use, so David and I decided it was worth cashing in two days to traverse through Normandie before flying home.  The five hour drive north was long, but worth seeing as we stopped off in the Loire Valley's Nantes for some Musadet and seafood.  Before sunset, however, we wanted to see France's second most visited attraction after the Eifel Tower.  Off on its own island, just off the shore of the Atlantic, stands Mont Saint Michel, the historical church and walled town that has existed since the 6th century.  Until recently, the island was only accessible at low tide, and was again isolated when the water came back in.  We stopped off for a brief tour before heading into Domfront to drop off our bags.

In the Domfrontais of Normandie sits the Lemorton family farm, a small outpost of cows, chickens, and, or course, a few pear and apple orchards.  Lemorton Calvados has been one of our top quality apply brandies since I started working at K&L, so it was a real treat to be invited there for dinner.  I felt right at home in their house and my stomach was able to exhale.  Rather than a glass of champagne and an introductory course of fois gras, Didier and Martine had a plate of peanut flavored cheetos and a bottle of pommeau (Calvados mixed with sweet apple cider) on the table.  Ahhhhh....finally a bit of relaxation.

Cheese and bacon toasties, salmon with braised leeks, chicken breast with potatoes and green beans, all served with pommeau, pear cider, apple cider, and fifty year old Calvados. I can't tell you how happy David and I were to be drinking cider instead of wine and apple brandy instead of Cognac.  We savored every bite and enjoyed the down-to-earth company of Lemorton.  We're going back tomorrow to dig through their cask inventory, but for now I'm content to rest in my cozy hotel room without ten pounds of duck fat in my stomach.  I've only gained about seven pounds so far, I think. 

-David Driscoll