French in Acton, a local language school, hosted its 8th annual Bastille Day celebration at the newly opened True West Brewery on July 11, 2016. A festive blend of current and former students and friends, this annual event is a favorite among the French in Acton community, drawing about thirty people to wine and dine on a balmy summer evening.
The menu, specially conceived by Chef Kevin Helm, drew inspiration from classic French dishes. Choices ranged from a spinach and feta quiche and salade niçoise to start, followed by a riff on the iconic coq au vin and baked salmon in puff pastry, and culminating in hand-made profiteroles with Erikson’s ice cream and a fantastic maple crème brûlée with caramelized brown sugar. As in the past, the evening was punctuated by laughter, French conversation, and a rousing rendition of La Marseillaise, France’s national anthem.
This year’s event struck a particularly poignant chord for those present. Founder Cynthia Edelman, during a touching speech, took the time to turn the spotlight on each attendee, profiling each student with pertinent anecdotes. She emphasized the familial, dedicated, and charming nature of French in Acton’s varied student body, which includes co-owner of True West Brewery, Stephanie Henry. Hailing from all over Massachusetts, 2016’s Bastille Day dinner brought together people from Acton, Boxborough, Carlisle, Harvard, Hudson, Framingham, Stow, and Wayland in a celebration of France’s independence day.
The French in Acton team, composed of teachers Eve Fischer, Liz Frothingham, and new director Virginie Faas, took advantage of the evening to fête French in Acton’s future and acknowledge the departure of Madame Edelman. To quote the current director, “This annual tradition is a wonderful reminder that beyond the common goal of learning French, there is a real interest and love for the French culture that has given way to a remarkable community of local francophiles.”
To learn more about French in Acton, call 978-929-9101 or visit www.frenchinacton.com.
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