Wednesday, October 19, 2011

Entertaining in the French Style

A few weeks ago, I posted on both the Manhattan and Paris apartments of designer Jean-Paul Beaujard. Well, my fascination with Beaujard's work has only intensified thanks to the book Entertaining in the French Style. I guess you could also say that because of this book, my interest in French food and tableware has been piqued as well.

Eileen Johnson, the book's author who also owns and operates FlowerSchool New York, has written a charming book that really captures the essence of French entertaining. Each chapter profiles an intriguing person (subjects include Beaujard, an artist, and an antique textiles collector) who lives in some beautiful part of France (think Paris, L'Isle sur la Sorgue, and La Perche.) The book's sumptuous photographs show the various tableware and food that each subject uses and serves when entertaining. There are even a few recipes included for dishes like Algerian Couscous and Plum Clafouti.

If you are at all interested in French style and entertaining, you really should consider purchasing a copy of this book either for yourself or as a gift. (The book's smaller size makes it perfect for gift-giving.) Reading it really is like taking an enchanting but all too brief trip to France.

A beautiful Maison Jansen games table set for dinner in the Paris apartment of designer Jean-Paul Beaujard. The porcelain is Sevres.

A table set beneath a pear tree at a bed & breakfast in Saignon. The wine, cheese, and fruit look scrumptious.

In the L'Isle sur la Sorgue home of designer and textile collector Michel Biehn. Biehn designed the cicada and pine decorated china and had it made in Mouspiers, France. I'm fascinated with the earthenware cicada knife rests.

Biehn set this table in his garden.

Artist Tony Ramos, who lives near Eygalieres in Provence, laid out hors d'oeuvres including saucisson, olives, and olive paste, in his studio. This was a precursor to a meal of roast chicken, string beans, and fresh tomatoes. Vin d'orange was served alongside.

A jasmine tart is garnished with crystallized mint leaves and rose petals.

All photos from Entertaining in the French Style by Eileen Johnson; Brie Williams photographer.


  1. Jasmine tarts!!! Yummy!!!

  2. It is an increasing trend here to add flowers to a dish, and it appeals to all the senses at once, a great idea! We have gone a step further than the zucchini flower, welcome to a new world of colour, taste and aroma

  3. I love to see this Jennifer. My friend Andrea (The French Basketeer) uses Roses and other flower infusions for syrups, ice cream etc.

    Art by Karena

  4. How yummy does this all look!!! Not long ago I wrote a guest post elsewhere on the silver used on the tables in Napoleon's Paris .. a perfect companion to this fab post. (you can find it on my site if you want).

  5. Just got copies to give as Christmas Gifts..grand post. Thanks

  6. All I can say is yes, that is a very typical Provençal apero that we serve our guests every week. It wouldn't work in Paris but the informality of it is perfect for the South. This book seems like it will be a wonderful gift to send out at Christmas--thank you!

  7. This looks like a wonderful book and the images you have shown are wonderful...xv