French! Why is their stuff so popular?

Discussion in 'The NAAFI Bar' started by putteesinmyhands, Jan 5, 2009.

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  1. As a belated Xmas present, I've recently received a bottle of Martell VSOP Medaillon brandy. It's in a box, so I presume it's quite expensive.

    It tastes bloody awful.

    I'm not a particular fan of brandy - I could never understand all the fuss about bringing Asbach back from Germany at the end of an exercise - but this stuff has a particular vileness.

    To put the taste into perspective, Mrs Puttees bought a bottle of the cheapest brandy available when she was making the Xmas cake and Xmas pudding. I'm busy finishing it off now (she said "You should have finished that off before you started on the new one." So I'm making amends and being a good boy, doing as I'm told, hee hee.) and it's quite bearable, provided that you alternate sips with tea.

    It's not just brandy, though. When I was married, we opted for Sekt instead of Champagne because both of us detest that fizzy French piss.

    Still wine is just as bad. German wine goes down nicely - whether it's an expensive Auslese with your dessert or a cheap Mosel Tafelwein for glugging. But I've yet to find a French wine that doesn't taste of vinegar. Endeavouring to join the smart set, I've been out and bought bottles of red that have had various TV wine tasters in raptures - and, in several cases, have tipped the stuff down the sink.

    French perfumes? Eau de toilette? - translates as bog pan water - does it get it's smell from the dog that's been drinking it? Eau de Cologne? - since when was Cologne in France? And these were the people who forced the re-name of elderflower champagne on the grounds that it didn't come from the Champagne valley...

    French food? Ignoring their disgusting penchant for snails and frogs, just what is the attraction of "haute cuisine"? I can think of only four things that would end up on Puttees' table - sauce anglais (custard), boeuf en croute (Beef Wellington - na na nee na na), creme brulee and Yorkshire Pudding. Even the French have given up on their culinary efforts. Nouvelle cuisine is the way forward - put a miniscule amount on the plate to leave space for a McDonalds afterwards.

    Is it snobbery that leads people to buy French stuff? Emperor's new clothes syndrome? Afraid to admit to one another that the stuff is crap for fear of being seen as less refined?

    Answers on a postcard, please.

    (And ashamed to admit that I'm on my 7th Citroen and think Michelins are really nice tyres.)
  2. Nehustan

    Nehustan On ROPs

    I love France and French culture, the index being a penchant for French girls...
  3. Ah but you forget the motoring greats, Renault and Citroen!
    (To be fair Citroen did produce the Traction Avant, DS and 2CV. But then they made the Ami 8-an estate powered by an 850cc engine. Or was it 650? Mon Dieu!)
  4. Puttees, mate you're not the only one that hates the French and any of their wares. I'm with you on that.

    However as you seem to be suffering so much, as a fellow Englishman I hate to see you in distress.

    Can I put you out of your misery and I.M. you my address so you can send me that bottle of Martell, thereby alleviating your problem.
  5. I have a hatred for Renault. No idea why.



  6. Re the 2CV, this was my first Citroen and I'd happily get another if they were still made. When I bought it (1982ish), Rolls Royce were announcing that they had installed anti-dive braking as a revolutionary new concept - Citroen jumped in quickly and revealed that the concept had been fitted to 2CVs since they were first produced in 1947.

    Also, at the time that I bought my first BX, Ford unveiled the prototype for the Probe. Bugger me if it wasn't the spitting image of a BX! The shape changed considerably before it actually came out.

    As far as Renaults are concerned, despite having lots of fun in a Renault 4, I'd always considered them as rust buckets - when the Renault 5 came out, it took (IIRC) more than a year for them to work out why water leaked behind the dashboard when it rained. But when Miss Puttees turned her first Clio upside down and none of the occupants were even slightly injured, I had to give grudging respect to its safety rating.

    I think the Ami 8 retained the 602cc engine of the later models of 2CV, but I could be wrong. Interestingly, and I've never been able to find a web page to show it, the SupaCat 6-wheel amphibious thingy was derived from the 2CV. I remember a magazine article of it having its maiden voyage on a lake next to where I was working at the time - I think the engine was modified from 602cc to 650cc by boring out slightly and installing wider piston sleeves.

    So, apart from cars and tyres, what have the French done for us?
  7. I've Googled the price of it. I'll swap what's left for a bottle of Laphroaig. (It's a bargain, I promise).
  8. Puttees-sorry mate I was being ironic about motoring greats! The 2CV, DS and Avant were certainly greats, but modern Renaults and Citroens are trash (though Citroen is showing a return to form). You're right about the Ami 8-dad had one and blew the aircooled engine. You mentioning its huge capacity reminded me!
  9. BiscuitsAB

    BiscuitsAB LE Moderator

    Smoked Garlic, now thats summit else. 1st cru grand champagne cognac (now thats a brandy) used to buy myself a bottle from simpkin and james in leicester for a bargin basement price, maybe I should go see if they have any left. Mrs Sarkosi? or is she a wop?

    Asterix the gaul, funny as feck. and they smell so we can take the piss!

    French Love em or hate em, they'll never be British!
  10. Horse meat's OK - it's sourced from British horses, isn't it? (Shhh!). But the Froggys either omit "de cheval" or put it in tiny letters after "bifteck."

    I make custard with milk. "Creme", under EU rulings, can only be used if cream is involved.

    Michelins are nice because they keep the air in (and grip) for lots more miles than other tyres. On my Citroens, the spare (nearly always the original Michelin) has lasted much longer than any of the others, regardless of make. :D
  11. Is Sarkosi a French name?

    Just asking, because I discovered that Nicole of the "Nicole..Papa" Clio adverts is actually Polish.

    (Wonder what shape she is now.... Michelin?)
  12. Creme Brulee is actually a variant of a British pud, Trinity Cream, from Trinity University.
  13. I would have believed you if you'd said College and not University. :)

    So I resorted to Wiki:

    Two birds with one stone - creme anglaise isn't custard either.

    Could Wiki be correct this time? :)
  14. Créme Brulee is custard, with a crunchy top. It's called Brulee when it's baked and topped with burnt sugar, Anglais when it's served as a sauce to accompany pudding.
  15. And there was me thinking Creme Brulee was the rock group from Royston Vasey!!!