Letter: Enjoying France

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The Independent Culture
Sir: The tone of recent correspondence concerning the apparent decline in the quality of Bordeaux wines (letter, 6 September) has caused me, a regular visitor to France for the past 20 years, some amusement.

In my experience it is easy to find good wines in France at a modest price if you know where to look. For me, that has been on selected supermarket shelves, where I have found consistently good wines at various locations.

Similarly, the views expressed in Ray Palmer's letter (9 September) are so far from my experience that I can only wonder if he visited the same country. If he couldn't find a restaurant open, why didn't he try the restaurant of a modest hotel, where excellent food can almost always be found?

France is a country where good food and wine are cherished; and in my experience, admittedly well away from the tourist spots, the desire of most family-run hotels and restaurants to give value for money continues undiminished. For just 150 francs, one can enjoy a four- or five-course meal of really excellent quality in most places in provincial France.

ALAN EARNEY

London W13

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