Mar 18, 2008

Paris—tapenade (and Caligula)



Tapenade: i have found the one that makes me go back to the same old place over and over. It's the shop that sells all different kinds of olive oils from all different places around the Mediterranean sea, at the Marché Beauvau, place d'Aligre, and it is called Sur Les Quais.
I've only tried the green tapenades so far and my favorite one is the one with lemon. Sort of like the sangria from Taller de Tapas in Barcelona, it has that subtle element to it that very powerfully sends me way back in time. This particular tapenade takes me to Marocco when i was 10 and ate some kinda paste made out of herbs and olive oil at my persian friends in Casablanca. That's my North African version of les petites madeleines de Proust. Martini Rosso takes me back in time and place even further: Gabon, early seventies.
On a different note but still within the same theme, there's one word that when heard or seen brings up very specific images to my mind: Caligula. That word takes me back to Casablanca 1983, in the house of two friends, twin sisters, who owned a VCR (back in the days most people who lived comfortably had a V.C.R - at home there wasn't even a T.V.) That one day they had managed to pull some forbidden videos out of their parents' closet and that movie about the roman emperor ended up being my first porn. At 12 you tend to remember those kind of images. That's my visual madeleines de Proust.
All roads do indeed seem to lead to Rome. I mean, how do you end up from tapenade in the 12th arrondissement to the capital of Italy?

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