Comme une française: How to pronounce the “euil” sound

How do you pronounce fauteuil in French? How about écureuil, or accueil? Each of these words use the weird French sound “euil”

It’s no secret that many French words have weird pronunciation. And one sound that always makes French learners pause is the “euil” sound. You’ll see it in words like un fauteuil (an armchair), un écureuil (a squirrel), and un accueil (welcome / hospitality / an entrance lobby). In today’s lesson, I’ll show you some tricks for getting around this weird French pronunciation, so you can get better at speaking real, everyday French! Let’s go!

Take care and stay safe. 😘 from Grenoble, France. Géraldine

10 Most Popular French Seafood Dishes

What seafood dishes to eat in France? 10 typical traditional French national and local seafood dishes, original recipes, pairing tips, and the most popular, famous and iconic authentic restaurants with French cuisine. Must try dishes, the ultimate bucket list for seafood lovers.

Moules à la marinière

(Moules marinière)

Moules à la marinière is a classic French dish that consists of mussels cooked in cider or wine-based sauces. The dish is typically made with shallots, garlic, and herbs such as parsley, thyme, and bay leaves, which are sweated in some butter before being combined with white wine or cider.

Fresh mussels are then added to the mixture and cooked until they open up. The dish is usually enhanced with freshly minced parsley, lemon juice and (optionally) mayonnaise or crème fraiche. Simple and flavorful, this mussel dish is typically enjoyed warm with slices of crusty bread and a glass of French wine on the side




Picpoul de Pinet  Savennières  Entre-Deux-Mers  Jasnières  Pouilly-Fumé  Saint-Véran  Witbier

Moules farcies

(Stuffed Mussels)

Moules farcies is a French dish in which mussels are stuffed and baked or grilled. The dish is prepared with mussels, butter, parsley, garlic, shallots, black pepper, nutmeg, parmesan cheese, and breadcrumbs. The butter is combined with garlic, shallots, nutmeg, and pepper.

The mussels are steamed until opened, and the empty halves of the shells are discarded. The butter combination is spooned into each shell, and the mussels are then sprinkled with breadcrumbs and parmesan before being baked or grilled until bubbling.

For the best experience, moules farcies should be sprinkled with parsley before serving it with a crusty baguette on the side, which is used to mop up the melted butter mixture.




Picpoul de Pinet  Sancerre  Tavel


Also known as bouillabaisse’s cousin, bourride is a popular fish stew originating from the French region of Languedoc-Roussillon, unlike bouillabaisse, which originated in the city of Marseilles. Most commonly it is made with white fish such as mullet, mackerel, or sea bass, but the original and most traditional recipes primarily include monkfish [ . . . ]  Continue at : 10 Most Popular French Seafood Dishes – TasteAtlas

Are French Restaurants More Likely than American to Survive the Lockdown?

France is not unique in seeing its service industry shut down in the midst of the COVID-19 pandemic. But compared to other countries, France has a robust safety net of social security, unemployment, and healthcare. France has also implemented emergency measures that may prevent many of these businesses from going under.

As French restaurants begin to slowly reopen for outdoor service, the culinary landscape in France looks very different when compared to the United States.

Government Aid: Two Countries, Two Philosophies

In March, President Emmanuel Macron said he would do “whatever it takes” to ensure that no company, big or small, collapsed under the financial weight of the pandemic. He announced 300 billion euros in loan guarantees and tax exemptions. The government also played a role in negotiating rent forgiveness for restaurants.

Perhaps even more helpful, at least in the short-term, were easy-to-access “solidarity funds:” 1500 euros per month given tax-free to small businesses, compounded with an additional allowance of up to 2500 euros from URSSAF, a social security union for small businesses. On April 15, Gérald Darmainn, Minister of Public Action and Accounts, also announced that the restaurant industry’s taxes and social charges – about 750 million euros – would be forgiven instead of merely suspended for the duration of administrative closure.

In the U.S., by contrast, most small restaurants didn’t qualify for loans, while huge corporations like McDonald’s and Shake Shack did. According to the New York Times, big chains were able to access “tens of millions of dollars while many smaller restaurants walked away with nothing when the $349 billion fund was exhausted [April 16].” The Los Angeles Times reported that those small businesses that did qualify were reluctant to apply for the Small Business Administration’s Paycheck Protection Program because of the “strings” attached to loans.

Restaurant Workers Feed Us, But Can They Eat?

As far as restaurant employees are concerned, in France, most are secure within the net of the country’s robust social structure. When forced closures were announced mid-March, restaurant workers were encouraged to first use up their paid vacation (an average of about five weeks per year) before becoming eligible for partial unemployment (the equivalent of 84 percent of their salary.) Continue reading “Are French Restaurants More Likely than American to Survive the Lockdown?”

The 16 French proverbs to drop into any conversation

La fête passée, adieu le saint

From howling with the wolves to spotting grey cats – sooner or later in French conversation proverbs will rear their head. Here French language coach Llyane Stanfield introduces some of the most common.

French proverbs are usually recognised primarily by their form: they are short, quick, and most importantly, they have rhythm, like a free-form poem.

Their feel is musical, which makes them easy to remember and they are full of lexicons and cliché, built into the language as phrases or jingles. Most proverbs have a long history but they are far from being ruins and frequently pop up in everyday conversation.

Here are some of the most popular proverbs that live to this day in French.

Après la pluie, le beau temps – after the rain, the good weather.  In other words the cheering sentiment that happy times usually follows a period of misfortune.

La fête passée, adieu le saint – the festival ends and goodbye to the saint. The timely reminder that we quickly forget to whom we owe a happy moment.

Chacun voit midi à sa porte – everyone sees noon at his door. You’re basically saying that each person may have a different perspective on something, so it’s a handy one to wheel out if you’re desperately trying not to get bogged down in a controversial topic.

You will notice that quite  a few French proverbs involve animals. Here is a few examples of commonly used ones.

Wolves are frequently the bad guys in French proverbs

Quand on parle du loup on en voit la queue – speak of the wolf and you’ll see his tail. This means that when you’re talking about someone (usually speaking ill), that person suddenly shows up and is similar to the English phrase ‘speak of the devil’.

Les loups ne se mangent pas entre eux – wolves don’t eat each other. The evil people sympathise and support each other, again this one has a devil equivalent in English – the devil takes care of his own.

Il faut hurler avec les loups – we must howl with the wolves. Finally a wolf saying in which wolves are not the bad guys – this simply means that you must adapt to the customs of the people you hang out with.

Petit à petit l’oiseau fait son nid – little by little the bird makes its nest.  Alternatively, we must have patience and perseverance if we want to get results.

La nuit tous les chats sont gris – all cats are grey in the night. In certain circumstances, everything looks the same. It basically means that in a complicated situation, it is difficult to judge so is handy if you want to express a non-committal opinion on Benjamin Griveaux or any other French sex scandal.

But there are plenty of more general proverbs on the subject of relationships and human behaviour.

Too much kissing is bad for your productivity, who knew?

Qui trop embrasse mal étreint – He who kisses too much is badly hugged. Not specific to kissing, this means that a person who undertakes too many things at the same time ends up succeeding at nothing.

Il ne faut jamais dire ‘Fontaine, je ne boirai jamais de ton eau’ – Never say ‘fountain, I will never drink your water’ or more generally we can’t say we’ll never need someone’s help.

Il faut laver son linge sale en famille – dirty linen should be washed in the family, very similar to the English phrase about not washing dirty laundry in public, it means that domestic issues should not be dealt with in public.

Ce que femme veut, Dieu le veut – what woman wants, God wants. Slightly sexist perhaps, it means that it is hard to resist women’s desires.

Prudence est mère de sûreté  Care is the mother of safety, so we must act cautiously even when we feel confident.

La parole est d’argent, le silence est d’or – speech is silver, silence is golden. Another familiar sentiment in English – silence is safer than words.

Les murs ont des oreilles – the walls have ears. Familiar from spy movies, the phrase means you have to talk quietly because someone may always hear what you say.

Il vaut mieux parler à Dieu qu’à ses saints – it’s better to talk to God than his saints, or for more secular times it is best to talk directly to the most important person.

Source: The Local