Staff Writer, FrenchEntrée

Florence Derrick

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About the author:

With a BA in French and History of Art from the University of Bristol, Florence spent a year living in Paris, studying Art History at the Sorbonne and working in publishing. She travels regularly back to France for both work and pleasure. Florence’s passion for France revolves around its gastronomy, art and pleasure-seeking lifestyle, and the rebellious streak found only in a nation constantly looking for an excuse to go on strike!


Articles by Florence Derrick


Medieval masterpieces: cathedrals of Picardy

Out of this world The astronomical clock (horloge astronomique) at Cathédrale Saint Pierre in Beauvais attracts a paying audience five times per day, once an hour between 10.40am and 4.40pm. The clock’s 53 dials display the time, tides and positions of the stars in

Périgueux

Yet one more reason why I love France: it’s Saturday morning in Périgueux during high summer and I’m meandering up from my hotel – the superbly spruced up Ibis beside the Isle River – around the side of the Dordogne

Roman Provence; Arles, Aix en Provence

Provence is home to a rich ancient heritage, with some of Europe’s best-preserved ruins from antiquity. The Romans conquered the region in the second century BC and it was soon a focal point of construction and Roman society due to

tarte tatin

French food classics: Tarte Tatin

This upside-down apple tart originated in the Sologne region under rather unconventional circumstances. Florence Derrick investigates the story behind one of France’s best-loved desserts.

The best apps for learning French

These days, language learning apps for smartphones and tablets can be the easiest way to pick up a foreign language. Which are the best for learning French?

French dictionary

Inside tips: speak French like a native

We asked our FrenchEntrée Forum members for their top tips on learning French. Most of them live in France and communicate in French every day, to varying degrees of expertise – and all of them have a personal story about their experience of learning French.

Book review: Picnic in Provence, Elizabeth Bard

This second memoir from the author of Lunch in Paris may have the makings of a cliché, following the well-known trope of an American carving out a new life in France. But with ease and grace, Bard overturns any stereotypes

The Hundred Foot Journey

Film review: The Hundred-Foot Journey

The Hundred-Foot Journey Director: Lasse Hallström Cert: PG Running time: 124 mins Two cinematic legends share the screen in this heart-warming culture-clash comedy which has cuisine at its core. Helen Mirren plays a snooty restaurateur whose Michelin-starred establishment caters for the

off piste skiing French Alps

Skiing in France: the numbers

Skiing in France explained: check out who skis in France, where they go and more with this this handy infographic

Arc de Triomphe Paris

10 must-see national monuments in France

Governed by the Ministry of Culture, the Centre des Monuments Nationaux conserves and manages 100 historic sites across France, which welcome some 9.2 million visitors per year

Recipe: Pink chard and vegetable tart

Tarte à la bette à cardes roses et aux légumes (pink chard and vegetable tart) We bring you a stunning summer recipe from Nina Parker, author of Nina St Tropez – her new cookbook, offering a sun-drenched selection of Mediterranean delights. Of this

jambon cru french ham

Chestnuts and charcuterie: Corsican food

Slap bang in between Italy and France, this Mediterranean island was the birthplace of the Emperor Napoléon and its cuisine consists of a glorious collision of the two cultures. Florence Derrick digs in…

Old Lyon from across the Saône river

Silk and sopranos: a cultural trip to Lyon

The second largest city in France and its gastronomic capital, Lyon is also famed for its weaving heritage and its opera house. Florence Derrick examines its cultural exports and how they relate to contemporary Lyonnais life

France’s 10 best beaches

Our rundown of the French beaches which should be at the top of any Francophile’s holiday list this summer

French summer seafood: moules marinières

If you’re visiting the French coast this summer, fresh mussels in white wine and shallot sauce simply shouldn’t be passed up. Florence Derrick explores the dish’s history…

Book review: Dear Reader

The Resistance Man Paul Fournel, Pushkin Press, £10 An elegy to print publishing in decline, told through the eyes of an ageing book editor and written by a former publisher. The ‘reader’ is an e-reader, publishing’s divider between the familiar and

Book review: The man in a hurry, Paul Morand

The man in a hurry Paul Morand, Pushkin Press, £15 This re-released masterpiece by one of the modern maîtres of French prose is a fable which criticises life lived in a hurry. The author – a controversial, cult figure renowned for

Actor profile: Louise Bourgoin

Name: Louise Bourgoin Born: November 28, 1981 Early career She made her screen debut on TV, presenting and working as a weather reporter. She was offered her first film role during 2007, in Anne Fontaine’s sexually charged drama, The Girl

Film review: Breathe

Director: Mélanie Laurent Starring: Joséphine Japy, Lou De Laâge Cert: TBC Running time: 91 mins This emerging directrice’s second feature film is rooted in the familiar coming-of-age trope, yet a clichéd tale of teenage angst this is not. Best-known for her acting role in Quentin Tarantino’s

Gardens of Dordogne: topiary art in Eyrignac

Topiary art, Renaissance statues, parterres and decorative pools make Les Jardins du Manoir d’Eyrignac one of the most creatively cultivated gardens in the South West. Florence Derrick explores its gorgeous terraces, features and orchards…

6 great day trips from Paris

There are a wealth of discoveries to be made on the City of Light’s doorstep so if you’re visiting the capital, consider taking one of our recommended outings…

Interactive wine map for the Loire Valley

Summer is upon us (in France at least!) and it’s the most wonderful time of year to visit the Loire Valley. Lush natural beauty, historic architectural gems and gourmet delicacies are in abundance, as well as one of the region’s biggest

Classic French moelleux au chocolat

We’re always in the mood for chocolate! Florence Derrick recommends a decadent moelleux au chocolat for any occasion – a melt-in-the-middle dessert lover’s dream…

Paris gears up for best Rock en Seine line-up yet

Held in the Domaine National de Saint-Cloud, a park in the western outskirts of Paris, alternative music festival Rock en Seine is now in its 13th year. Taking place from 28 to 30 August, the line-up looks set to be

Visiting a Calvados distillery in Normandy

In Lower Normandy, apple cider has been distilled into brandy since the Middle Ages. Florence Derrick visits the Boulard family distillery in Coquainvilliers, where 85% of the region’s tipple is produced…

Eiffel Tower named top ‘selfie’ destination

France’s most iconic landmark has collected many accolades since its construction in 1889: it was the world’s tallest building until it was surpassed by New York’s Chrysler Building in 1930, and is the most-visited paid monument in the world. Now in its 126th

Film review: Mea Culpa

Director: Fred Cavayé Cert: 15 Running time: 90 mins A gritty tale of good and bad cops battling against criminals and the law, tragic circumstances and family threats, this certainly isn’t a ‘feel-good’ film. Shot in the grimy suburbs of Paris, the plot revolves around the drink-driving homicide committed

Summer recipe: classic Comté cheese soufflé

Comté cheese has been produced in the Massif du Jura region of France for over 1,000 years, using only organic Montbéliarde and French Simmental cows’ milk. Its production is still based on artisanal traditions, lovingly crafted in around 160 small villages

5 reasons to visit France d’Outre-Mer

France has four départements, two territories and five collectivités territoires overseas, in the Atlantic, Indian and Pacific Oceans. Here’s why you should venture to ‘France overseas’…

France’s national monuments

Governed by the Ministry of Culture, the Centre des monuments nationaux conserves and manages 100 national monuments in France, which welcome 9.2 million visitors per year. Watch the video below for an overview of France’s main monuments, from Paris’s Arc

Book review: Virgile’s Vineyard, Patrick Moon

Virgile’s Vineyard Patrick Moon, Matador, £9.99 This is an expanded version of Virgile’s Vineyard: A Year in the Languedoc Wine Country, which was first published in 2003, and has been produced to sate popular demand. It’s an autobiographical tale of upping sticks, abandoning a career as a solicitor and

Interview: Joanne Harris, author of Chocolat

Author Joanne Harris is best known for her novel Chocolat, which was made into an Oscar-nominated film. Here she tells FrenchEntrée about the effect that France has on her writing

French onion soup fit for a king

Gloriously rich and sweet, with just the right amount of acidity, French onion soup defies the modest reputation of its main ingredient. However, when the dish was invented, it was simply a case of the allium being in the right place at the right time…

Culinary specialities of Franche-Comté

This mostly rural, relatively little-explored region abutting Switzerland is best known for its cheese and charcuterie yet boasts a unique of variety of wine dating back to the Romans. Florence Derrick investigates…

Saint-Étienne celebrates design at International Biennial

  Until 12 April, Saint-Étienne (Rhône-Alpes) is hosting its four week-long International Biennial of Design. Now in its ninth edition, this year’s event is under the direction of new curator Benjamin Loyauté – a designer who is currently showing an exhibition of

Interview: Richard Ayoade talks French cinema

Director, actor, comedian and author Richard Ayoade is a French ‘New Wave’ cinema addict. He speaks exclusively to Florence Derrick about France and the ‘Nouvelle Vague’.