Day trip to Montreux
Montreux Travel Blog› entry 5 of 6 › view all entries
October 20th, 2009 – by: puttyland
We took a day trip to Montreux in order to have lunch in town (pizzas - good, but crappy service) and see the ChĂ¢teau de Chillon. It had been renovated since I was there 3 years ago - they added an audio guide, and had lots more information and displays explaining the life of the castle. It's gorgeous - with it's amazing location on Lake Geneva, but there's lots of meandering up and down to see everything - and it just got to be a little too much walking, so we took the bus back to Vevey, where we were to meet up with my friend Ariane's mother, RenĂ©e, and her boyfriend Michel. They had invited us to a raclette dinner at their house.
We were to start the evening with an aperitif in a vineyard. RenĂ©e said to bring a warm jacket. What I didn't realize was that we were really going to be in the middle of a vineyard. They parked the car, got out some warm jackets if we needed them, and then started off on a trail through the vineyard, right next to the railroad track. My mom was starting to get a little annoyed with more walking, so I asked how long it would be - they said 10 minutes. Mom said it seemed like longer, but I was content to just take photos of the vineyards, lake & mountains, as the walk was beautiful in and of itself.
We arrived at this little cabana/shed in the middle of the vineyard, with a covered concrete patio, on which there was a little table and 4 folding chairs. RenĂ©e set about taking out dried meats from Vaud (the canton that Lausanne is in), and grapes, nuts, and bread, while Michel showed me the box inside the cabana house that contained bottles of wine, and a little coin receptacle with a sign that said to please deposit 10 francs, and take whichever wine you liked.
Michel got the car and brought it around so my folks wouldn't have to walk all the way back, and they drove us to their house in the suburbs. RenĂ©e has the professional raclette maker, where you attach a half-wheel of cheese, put it up close to the heating element, and then scrape it off onto plates. Ariane and her girlfriend Saby were already there, and had put slices of foie gras onto our plates, so we dug into that. The raclette was delicious, of course - can never get enough of the cornichons, and those pickled onions, and...yum. Just yum. For dessert, RenĂ©e brought out a tarte aux raisinĂ©e, RaisinĂ©e is another specialty of this region - it's apple and/or pear juice that's reduced down to a molasses-looking goo - very concentrated - and, mixed with cream, makes a delicious tart.
We had a great time, and the meal was, of course, fabulous. After dinner, RenĂ©e showed me some photos of her trip to L.A. They had stayed at my house in Long Beach for a few days in September - right before I left for Europe - during their 3-4 week trip through mostly the national parks in southwest U.S. We took some group photos and then Michel drove us back to our hotel in Lausanne.
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