I started eating my way across France when I studied abroad in college, so I was thrilled to read 'Tastes of Brittany,' by Matt Lee and Ted Lee, in your April issue. Throughout the country, there is a marked affinity for regional cooking that gives a whole new meaning to Gallic pride.
And even though the olive oildrizzled bistro fare of Provence or the heavily sauced haute cuisine of Paris garners the most attention, there's nothing like a smear of creamy Breton butter on a fresh baguette or the sweet brininess of oysters harvested straight from the Atlantic. Fifteen years later, I'm still smitten with Brittany's bounty.
—Mike Singer, Detroit, Mich.
As a longtime subscriber, I enjoyed Christopher Petkanas's article about Fearrington House, Woodlands Resort & Inn, and Blackberry Farm ["Southern Exposures," April]. But having stayed at all three places, I felt that the story overlauded Blackberry Farm and did not do justice to the other two. I agree that the planned community at Fearrington is encroaching upon the inn, but it is actually a good bit away from the main building. Unfortunately for guests at Blackberry, gone are the days when golf carts were gratis and you brought your own liquor (which the hotel labeled and stored for you).
—Mimi Manzler, Nashville, Tenn.
Christopher Petkanas replies: Concerning Fearrington, everybody experiences space differently, and I need to put more than 282 yards between my hotel room and a 1,000-unit subdivision. As for Blackberry, I sympathize. There's nothing more dispiriting than a favorite hotel that no longer matches your memory of it.
D.C. Dining Detour
Jay Cheshes's remark about the restaurant-hotel combination at Maestro in the Ritz-Carlton Tysons Corner—that it is "ideal for a nostalgic Clintonesque dalliance"—is jarringly offensive ["Capital Gains," April]. L'affaire Monica was not a romantic little dalliance but an indiscretion that cost this country vast amounts of money and energy.
—Roxane Winkler, Sherman Oaks, Calif.
I sometimes fly to Dulles just so I can indulge myself in a Maestro dinner. Some people might think I'm crazy for flying cross-country for a meal, but they haven't tried Maestro. Thanks for profiling my favorite restaurant in your April issue.
—Debra-Lynne Terrill, Playa del Rey, Calif.
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