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Mon dieu, it’s Bastille Day again? Affix your beret, twist your moustache and consider the existential (while eating Madelines, bien sur) on July 14. The national French holiday celebrates the 1789 uprising against the French monarchy, the storming of the Bastille, and most importantly, independence from people wearing powdered wigs. Here are some local celebrations of Frenchitude.
Le Grand Éclair: Costeaux Bakery
Holy baguettes, this is the biggest Bastille Day blow-out in SoCo. Starting at the crack of le matin (that’s 7am to the rest of us), Costeaux French Bakery celebrates the 14th with live music, Marie Antoinette impersonators, croissant-making demos, Eiffel tower cookie decorating, can-can dancers, guillotine-sliced baguettes, fencing demos and accordion music. Admission to the fun is free, but bring a few francs for their all-French cafe menu that includes pommes frites (French fries), Vichyssoisse (potato leek soup), escargots Bourguignon (snails in garlic parsley sauce), a selection of French and American wines, and of course cake. 417 Healdsburg Ave., Healdsburg, 433-1913.
Skirt-Lifting: Chateau St. Jean winery
Yes you can, can-can during the courtyard celebration at this Sonoma Valley winery. From 11am to 4pm, guests are invited to enjoy French music and can-can dancing, caricature drawing, a petanque tournament and tastings of classic French wine varietals. A celebratory feast of hearty French country fare (including a creme brulee station) with wine pairings happens on the lawn, with seating at the winery’s harvest tables. Luncheon: 11:30am to 1:30pm, $50 per person, 21+ only, reservations required. 8555 Sonoma Hwy., Kenwood, 877-478-5326.
More French s’il vous plaît….
- Bastille Day at Occidental Center for the Arts with musical acts, Un Deux Trois and La Guiguette. $15, 3850 Doris Murphy Ct., Occidental
- Valley of the Moon Petanque Club hosts a Bastille Day luncheon and tournament. Reservations required, $25, 343-9465.
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