Friday, August 5, 2011


Photo : L. M. Sorré
A few years ago, I was in Italy for Christmas seeing my family. My cousins live about a half hour from Cervinia or, more commonly known, the Matterhorn in the Italian Alps. One afternoon, we decided to take a drive further up the Aosta Valley towards France. We stopped at Courmayeur.

Courmayeur, is one of the chicest ski resorts in all of the Italian Alps. It shares the summit of Mont Blanc with Chamonix in France on the other side, which was the home of the first Olympic Winter Games in 1924. That gives you an idea of what kind of a place this is.

Walking in the afternoon sunshine through the town admiring the slinky Ukrainian ski-bunnies and their appropriately troll-like male companions, shops featuring nothing but Rolex, all-wheel-drive Bentleys and Mercedes automobiles dotting the streets, and cafés featuring all kinds of food.

Then, in the town square, we came upon this.

Photo : L. M. Sorré
An Oyster stand at 3000 metres?????

Who knew?

This was too good to be true! I immediately ordered two dozen Oysters and five glasses of Chardonnay. The guy at the stand reached into a large snow filled wash-tub and immediately went to work. A few moments later, we had freshly shucked Blue Points and a beautiful crisp local Chardonnay, all at -14°C and at 3000 meters!

And, all of this, with Mont Blanc in the background.

My Cousin and Brother-in-Law, Courmayeur 2009

To this day, I don't think I can enjoy Oysters any other way.

By the way, today is National Oyster Day, so I may have to try!

©2011 Wait At The Bar

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