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Ventana - An Enchanting Resort in BIg Sur

Summary: I love Ventana. I highly recommend visiting  and exploring the landscape at Lime Kiln and Andrew Molera State Park which I've blogged about here. Please note this is #notsponsored . Yes, that means we paid our own bill! Lots of details in the following review. including a Post Ranch vs Ventana comparison.  Can you tell there's something exciting beyond this beautiful gate? There's something special about Big Sur, a magic in the light, the presence of the Pacific, the cliffs, beaches, redwood forests and the murmur of the surf. It's one of my favorite places in California. I couldn't think of anywhere else I wanted to be to celebrate turning fifty, because it's a place where there's a sense of nature, space and light and a wide horizon. We've been to Big Sur many times and for a celebration there are two fantastic hotels vying for your attention. The exclusive, modern and very private, cliff top Post Ranch Inn and on the other side of the road the …

La Chambre aux Confitures - Is this the Best Jam in Paris?

I admit, I'm a little obsessed with La Chambre aux Confitures, a small jam shop around the corner from our flat. It has several things going for it. First of all it's at 60, Rue Vieille du Temple on one of my favorite streets in Paris.  Secondly they sell fabulous jam, lots of jam and even the odd pot of chutney or honey. Third who could resist flavors like apricot and lavender, blackcurrant and violet or strawberry and rose? Plus I love the packaging, could you resist the bag with the spoon on the right above?
The strawberry jam is so fresh it taste like something other than jam. It's extraordinary. I haven't tried any of the plum jams but they have an enormous variety as you can see.
The jams are ordered by color and type and it's aesthetically charming. They're stacked one on top of each other so it's good it's not earthquake country.
The chutneys have a slightly different packaging but look equally delicious.