Bordeaux Welcomes Careful Diners - SFNers in town

Fourteen SFN members turned up at restaurant L’Estacade on the banks of the Gironde in up town Bordeaux today. James and Catharine arrived in their new yacht, the Sucy Survivor and a jolly good time was had by all.

Might be tempted, am blocking the date with a pencil..........

What gorgeous pictures - would love to meet up with other SFNers, although I'd second the proposal for a Toulouse venue. Got cousins in Bx though, so perhaps I could wangle it - I'll register if we can come.

However, a thought has finally matured in my very slow-working brain; I have a 5-seat car if there are some others in the Limousin region who would like to car-pool for a day out at the coast... and to meet other members of SFN of course.

Thanks John for all this information, and yes, looks as if the UK is competing with France regarding how much more red tape they can throw at us! My OH will be grateful for your link when it comes to renew his passport, it is me that needs to go to Bordeaux to the consulate. I’m German and unfortunately the German authorities also have their fair share of red tape, so to get my passport renewed I have to fill in all sorts of paperwork, send it off together with my current passport and then make an appointment with the German consulate in Bordeaux, it takes about 6 - 8 weeks before I’ll see the new passport…hence my idea to combine the chore with something fun and arrange the consulate appointment for the same day as the SFN lunch :slight_smile: Worth a try!

Marianne: Just had to renew my son's passport; it can no longer be done by personal visit to a local consulate. You have to download the forms from and send everything off to an address in Paris: they then verify that everything needed is correctly there, return your original documents (birth/wedding certificates, old passport, etc.) afterwards, forward the application to somewhere in the UK, and that office sends the new passport to you.

It's so that all UK Passports are supplied from a single location, to improve security (they say!). Britain is getting to the stage of needing nearly as much administrative paperwork as France! Takes about 3 to 4 weeks for your new passport to arrive, and can be done up to nine months before your old one expires. They add any remaining time to the new passport too.

A get together in Toulouse at some point would be great for us (and probably a few other SFNers), only 1 hour 15 minutes instead of over 3 hours drive. Having said that, we need to go to Bordeaux for passport renewal at some point anyway, so maybe I could try and get the appointment at the consulate for 28 Sep :wink: Will stick the date into our calendars :slight_smile:

Hi Shauna,

It's been fun trying to get around - I think the trams run more frequently when they are on strike! I know Jardin Public - my daughter lodges the other side of there when she is at school. Three days to go and she is done for the year although school is already done as she has spent June on stage at the opera house. That's stage as in French work experience as opposed to being a soprano!

Given that, I am no more than 50 metres away because we rent offices above the Banque Courtois on the opposite corner, right next to Entrecote restaurant. All changing later in the year when we move out to Beglès. I shall miss being bang in the centre of the city...

Message me outside of this discussion if you both want to meet up for a glass of something - no reason why there can't be a private pre-September SFN lunch taster!

Hi David, we were at the fireworks Friday and last night. The fireworks last night were like none I had seen before!

Going back tonight to finish our booklet. We are in a temporary place by Jardin Public so it has been very nice to walk to the festivities. We move to Cauderan tomorrow so won’t have that advantage in 2014.

Where do you work? My husband is here working for Michelin in Bassens…


Oh wow, September 28th, I should be back from the U.S. after dropping my daughter at school! Yachts and helicopters! My my, I don’t know if I can hang with such an affluent crowd! Hubby and I will arrive via the “tram” from our little apartment!

Ah thanks honey. Don't need salubrious but do need to keep costs down. Will keep in touch re how my persuasion skills on himself are doing.

Sheila - you're very welcome to stay here and do the Bordeaux run part with us? Although other SFN members can probably offer slightly more salubrious accommodation....!

Ah, ok, was just wondering "why Bordeaux". I'll have to do a bit of talking to himself, and do a bit of planning. Min 4 hour drive but maybe we could combine with stopping off at friends in Gers. Will work out a bit expensive when hotel room is added in, so hope we can get a few bookings between now and then. :-)

Yes, Ma'am! And reading your diary date already (which I have noted), I suspect you are leaning towards Maison du Fleuve?

Being selfish, Bordeaux is about the only place that is do-able for us easily in a day. Having said that, we could try to do Toulouse at some point - but I'll need to get me family railcard first!

Hi and the 28th September sounds good. Just wondered why Bordeaux again? Spread the love and come a bit further east??

Oh ho, possible. Reckon by then I can drive to Lalinde and get the train at least.

So taking previous comments into account re the days of the week, here is *drum roll* the next scheduled date for the SFN Bordeaux meet up:

Friday 28th September

I know it's a way off and there's no need to confirm until much nearer the time, but this way you can at least put the date in your diaries!

We can also decide on the venue at a later date :)

Thanks for that info and make sure you don't miss the next one!

I work in Bordeaux and had no idea you were all meeting! Mind you, since I logon to SFN about once every 10 weeks, no wonder I missed it - totally my own fault.

I know the various restos mentioned. Maison du Fleuve - superb but take your fat wallet with you. I only went in the evening and it was a blowout but hey, it's worth paying for good stuff. L'Estacade is good and worth a visit - parking is easier the right hand side of Stalingrad where you might find space in the backstreets but certainly round by the botanical gardens, then you can just walk down past the original Bordeaux railway station. Did you all know that? The bridge across the river was not built until quite late and the trains from the North used to stop that side of the river - the squarish yellow brick building which now houses the cinemas and restos.

Tupina? Each to their own I guess. We only went there because it was on some Rick Stein programme and for me it was OK. Their new cafe is nice right on the quai. Not as pricy either.

Oh and the wine festival is brilliant if you have never been. Luckily, we have the advantage of a city centre building so we were up on the roof for the fireworks on Thursday. Goes on until Sunday then the festival itself until next week. Also a great son et lumiere show where they project images in time to music on the various buildings of the Bourse.