Celebrating Bastille Day

We received an invite from a couple we are friends with in May asking us to attend their Bastille Day celebration party. And let me tell you, I have been waiting since that day with baited breath for the party. They told us to expect an entire day of eating and drinking and merriment, complete with 7 food courses to celebrate the 7 people that escaped from the Bastille back in 1789. Sam and I were so excited to celebrate with 3 other couples that are even bigger foodies than us! Each course and the accompanying wine made the day a perfectly relaxing Sunday.

The first course was an aperitif drink of absinthe and champagne with some house baked bread. We wandered around their yard, sipping on our delicious cocktails. Next came the first appetizer, a chicken and pork liver pate. It was served on a cheese board with spicy mustard, homemade pickles and baguettes. The pate was so well seasoned with an almost mousse-like texture. Delicious! Next came escargot, which Sam was a little bit nervous to try, since he had never had it. But doused in butter garlic and herbs, what wouldn’t be delicious! This was my favorite course because it was prepared absolutely perfectly. Better than ones I’ve had in restaurants. The mixture of garlic and fresh garden herbs stuffed in beautiful little snail shells made the course a highlight. Next came the main course, wine braised chicken with mushrooms, bacon and onion. Prepared and served out of a dutch oven, the chicken fell off the bone and was topped with a wonderfully made wine gravy.

In order to make room in our stomachs for all the courses, we took eating breaks and spent time chatting in the summer sun. The Bushaw’s had a perfect little yard with chairs and blankets laying around for us to enjoy the Sunday. The 4th course was designed to “burn a hole” in your stomach to make room for the remaining three courses. We all had a nice tumbler of spicy cognac. I’m not much of a drinker, so I only had a few sips (and then passed it along to my excited boyfriend) but the spicy and bitter combination proved to calm my full stomach. After a few hours of digesting, we went on to the 5th course– a simple summer salad. Lightly dressed, the fresh arugula and lettuce was a nice palette cleanser. Course six was the cheese course. This was the only course that I contributed to. We were all instructed to bring a variety of French cheeses, and the mixed plate turned out great. There was a creamy, light Brie, a mild French Gruyere, and a herb crusted Brie. As an avid cheese eater, I was in heaven with the cheese choice and homemade bread to pair alongside.

We ended the meal with a homemade orange liquor and walnut cake and coffee. After a day of eating and drinking, sitting at the table enjoying the last course seemed like the perfect ending to an amazing days. I am so grateful for the Bushaw’s hard work to make this day possible and the delicious dishes they generously shared with us. Thank you!!


Cam poses with the wine pairing bottles
Cam poses with the wine pairing bottles
Cheese plate!
Cheese plate!
Nick and Angie are enjoying the day with us!
Nick and Angie are enjoying the day with us!

Author: Megan Arz

I am a travel and food obsessed Midwesterner living in Chicago and dreaming of the world. I work as a full-time program manager for Greenheart Travel, but I am also committed to integrating the travel lifestyle into my every day routines. I am passionate about ethical travel, meeting new people, creating unique memories and eating local cuisine!

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