Olivia Ruiz, the stage name of Olivia Blanc, is a French singer-songwriter, singer, actress, director and novelist born on 1ᵉʳ January 1980 in Carcassonne.
Gérard Bertrand: hello everyone, welcome to the tenth edition of food wine and music today château l'Hospitalet with the chef Laurent Chabbert who is with us and with a very special guest of honour, a special guest because she is from the region, I ask you to welcome Olivia Ruiz.
Olivia Ruiz: Hi, everybody.
Gérard Bertrand: How are you, Olivia?
Olivia Ruiz: but it's going great in front of these beautiful products. It can only go well, there's a disaster going on next door, but otherwise it's fine.
Gérard Bertrand: So that's incredible because Olivia, you spent three months in Narbonne, Le Touquet beach, 3 minutes from here, and now that we're doing the live show, you're in Paris, you're in Paris for anything!
Olivia Ruiz: It's nonsense, but my faith has been said, the main thing is to be there. But it's true that I-I-I-I-I want to see everything that's happening.
Gérard Bertrand: So the chef, what are we going to...what's on the program tonight?
Laurent Chabbert : hello Olivia and hello everyone.
Olivia Ruiz: Hi.
Laurent Chabbert : so today we're going to make a vegetable press and crumble some piglet, piglet of Roquetaillade so next to Limoux with a virgin of tomatoes, courgettes and olives, a homemade barbecue sauce, some small herbs. Then a veal chop, so we just removed the chop to make it easier to cut it... from the Pyrenees with a homemade purée with a shallot sauce, some chips... and then we have a novelty so it's the baballes with red wine and red fruit that we will see on sale from next week at the hotel.
Gérard Bertrand: perfect! So I'm happy because in fact Olivia today...tient chef is coming...it's important because Laurent Chabbert today he has a match within the match thanks to you because in fact he's going to compete with Yannick Alléno's kitchens because we wanted to do something because it's good that you have requirements, it's going to be challenging, because in fact you're going to be able to taste almost the same thing live with... which was delivered directly by the kitchens of the three-star chef Yannick Alléno in Paris. So it's great because we're going to be able to do a chef challenge, he's the master chef today between Narbonne and Paris, so we're off, so?
Olivia Ruiz: knowing that the Parisian is already for Narbonne, so the challenge is a bit over.
Laurent Chabbert : Thank you!
Gérard Bertrand : Olivia, on the other hand, I'll tell you something, we're going to start drinking something and we couldn't start drinking anything other than a wine from the city of Carcassonne because yesterday we officially launched this heritage range all over the world, we were at the Hôtel de la Cité where we had a wonderful time. So it's a 2018 a Merlot de la cité de Carcassonne, it's going to remind you of something.
Olivia Ruiz: oh well yes, although strangely less good gabach the first one who ticked me was the tautavel, it's a shame for me.
Gérard Bertrand: no no, not at all, because we're very proud... to yours.
Olivia Ruiz: Cheers Gerard!
Gérard Bertrand: Cheers!
Gérard Bertrand: so a few words Olivia, how did you experience this confinement at Narbonne beach in secret?
Olivia Ruiz: yeah exactly, so still what was cool was that I wasn't confined to being confined every day with my little guy who's 4 and a half, the waterfront on a bike during authorized hours and at least you get to see the little life that goes on and the shops of a great butcher in Narbonne amazing beach, so here we are... and so this little daily life at a good distance allowed us to hold on because my son like me we like people, we like to chat, share so we would have been very unhappy if we had stayed in Paris and we had been forced for our safety to stay locked up a little more from there, we are lucky.
Gérard Bertrand: what did you do for 3 months?
Olivia Ruiz: So listen, I...well, first of all I kept my son because at four and a half it takes a lot of energy, you know... and then I wrote down, of course, the fact that I finished the chest of drawers with the coloured drawers.
Gérard Bertrand: we're going to talk about it.
Olivia Ruiz: Well, there was a little moment when I needed to find that shelter again. I invented in this book some very comforting women and the fact that she leaves, going to others, consoling others... I needed to go back to that place, so for the second one it seems that it will still be this Occitan setting which is so dear to me and which will inspire me until my last breath.
Gérard Bertrand: That's good, that's great.
Olivia Ruiz: And again, I'm not gonna explain this to you.
Gérard Bertrand: No, but the good thing is that we have the same common roots. My family comes from the Alps, four generations ago, you come from the Spanish side of the Alps, so it's Marseillette, and Marseillette is your native village and your village at heart because I know you were born in Carcassonne, and I was born in Narbonne, but it's Marseillette. So there are two stars in Marseillette, Olivia Ruiz and Jancis Robinson, the woman of wine in the world, so I'm going to organize a meeting with her because you are the two most important people in Marseillette and you don't know each other, so I learned that.
Olivia Ruiz: I know it's more difficult than elsewhere to make a place for myself, probably like in many men's jobs, and as you say Marseillette, it's a pocket handkerchief on and 700 I believe in everything, well, I'm not there, but there are my parents, so it amazes me because I...when we go out for a bit, I continue to go to the café and go to the village festivals when I'm there, it's important to me...and so I didn't meet her and you're going to have to introduce me to her or one of these days I'm going to go knock on her door...
Gérard Bertrand: Exactly, so I remember because when I was younger and I used to listen to Radio Marseillette a few times, it still speaks to you?
Olivia Ruiz: I was an animator on top from the age of 6 until I was 16, figure you.
Gérard Bertrand: I used to take the train at Epoque de Lusignan in Carcassonne when I was at the agricultural college, so with the bell tower that you can see from far away from Marseillette. It also reminds me of my childhood and adolescence, to be exact.
And so for the musical activity I think you're preparing something too, right?
Olivia Ruiz: Yeah, because I became an associate, I became an associate artist on the national stage of the great Narbonne.
Gérard Bertrand: Exactly.
Olivia Ruiz: there you go and I did a creation there last November that was supposed to go back in March around... around each other. I did it for a show and also to create a link around the songs as marked by the Spanish of France or the Mediterranean in the wider sense of the term. A little poetic journey on the importance of changing our view of others, of erasing their reflexes of rejection, of relearning to see difference as the greatest of riches.
Gérard Bertrand: That's good. And when will it start up again? When is it going to start up again?
Olivia Ruiz: from the beginning of October with the bouffes du nord, from the 3rd to the 7th of November.
Gérard Bertrand: Very good. So chef, are you ready?
Laurent Chabbert: Yeah!
Gérard Bertrand: So the boss is ready, so we're going to play a game together, I don't know what you've got. So, um...
Olivia Ruiz: So okay. So...
Gérard Bertrand : So, chief, what is it?
Olivia Ruiz: so me on the front porch...
Gérard Bertrand: it's magnificent chef, what is it then?
Olivia Ruiz : ola it's beautiful, wait is this the entrance or is this the entrance?
Gérard Bertrand: There you have the choice, I think...
Olivia Ruiz: This is?
Gérard Bertrand : That's for later.
Olivia Ruiz: olala but it's beautiful.
Gérard Bertrand: then chef goes, we say.
Laurent Chabbert : so we have the piglet shoulder press. So the piglet I just put underneath, peppers, zucchini, eggplants that we preserved in olive oil. We added a little sage, a little olive cut, some olive oil from the candied tomato; here the barbecue sauce we made ourselves and the shiso sorbet, the shiso that comes from the Françoise family.
Gérard Bertrand: magnificent. Then I'm going to taste chef. Do you want to taste with me or...
Laurent Chabbert : No, I have to work a little bit.
Gérard Bertrand : You have to work a little.
Gérard Bertrand: here you go then...
Laurent Chabbert : I just add the virgin sauce.
Gérard Bertrand : Have you started tasting Olivia yourself?
Olivia Ruiz: So look, I don't know if you can see.
Gérard Bertrand : ha c'est beau !
Olivia Ruiz: But it's beautiful.
Gérard Bertrand: It's beautiful, yeah.
Gérard Bertrand: So we're going to thank Chef Alléno?
Olivia Ruiz: Oh, yes, we're gonna thank him.
Gérard Bertrand : So I'm going to taste it. There you go...
Olivia Ruiz: It's beautiful in narbonne too said so.
Laurent Chabbert : we're good there too, yes.
Gérard Bertrand: magnificent.
Olivia Ruiz: She's a wonder. It's an incredible cooking, it's caramelized, it's melting and crispy. It's super good, it's not greasy.
Gérard Bertrand : Is that all right, Olivia? I...I have a difficult life. I even lick my fingers.
Olivia Ruiz: frankly between the beautiful trips, the good food, the good wine. I often tell myself, it's not easy for poor Gérard. And your estate too, we don't talk about it, but it's a magical place. To have come to a concert at your place...
Gérard Bertrand: Yes, it was 2012 already.
Olivia Ruiz: Playing in this place is magical. Well, I had already come as a client to the hotel one night before, long before, and I had a great time. And then a few years later the concert. So really this place is a little cocoon. It's huge, it's as big as everything you've built and it makes us shine for the rest of the world and we're very proud of it. But that's what's so magical about this place is that it's a little cocoon at the same time.
Gérard Bertrand : Yes, and you know it was in 2012, so we're going to drink to our friend Jean Cormier who left us, who was there with us, and you remember we finished at 5am with Jean Cormier telling stories, we had lifted our elbows a few times.
Olivia Ruiz : Oh yes, but we're good at that ; oh well, of course his great elbow-lifting contest, but I had forgotten how much he told me about it.
Gérard Bertrand: and yes...the elbow-washer marathon.
Olivia Ruiz: what a laughing stock... you know I came to play, I'd lost my grandmother the day before.
Gérard Bertrand : I know...
Olivia Ruiz: but I didn't want to cancel, so it was a nice moment.
Gérard Bertrand: Yes, I remember that, in fact, your whole family was a lot more worried than you were before the concert. I remember that very well.
Olivia Ruiz: Well, yeah, I trusted...
Gérard Bertrand : when we're on stage...so what do you want us to do...what do you want to do to us because I know you're happy to do a few a cappella notes for us so...
Olivia Ruiz: Well, I feel like telling you what would you like? Do you feel like Spanish? Do you feel like French? Do you feel like English?
Gérard Bertrand : So listen, no, but I...
Olivia Ruiz : What kind of music do you like Gérard ?
Gérard Bertrand : no, I was...
Olivia Ruiz: I know a little bit.
Gérard Bertrand: I was stunned because I saw that your roots were Rock Five and that you were a fan of Lenny Kravitz. It's incredible!
Olivia Ruiz: Oh, yeah! Rolala, but that's... we're gonna have to...
Gérard Bertrand: no no, but you do what you want.
Olivia Ruiz: It's gonna be complicated, but yeah, sure, when I was a kid, I loved it. What was it that I was singing at that time that was a bit of a rock song that I could remember... I guess I've forgotten a bit. What else could we sing from home?
Gérard Bertrand: but no...
Olivia Ruiz: Something to remind you of home. Well, we're gonna do a little bit of shuffling.
Gérard Bertrand: that's impeccable.
Olivia Ruiz: It's still a song about the café in Marseillette.
Gérard Bertrand: Exactly!
Olivia Ruiz: live music.
Gérard Bertrand: Bravo!
Olivia Ruiz: There you go. This is Marseillette.
Gérard Bertrand: Yeah, you know what, when you sing that, it reminds me of my sister and I on our way to school, since we were leaving my house to go to the village school in Saint-André-de-Roquelongue. And so we walked 500 metres every day and there I had my cousins, my cousins' cousins, and therefore the knock-knees, often rapped.
Olivia Ruiz: and the scent of freedom!
Gérard Bertrand: Yeah, exactly. And we'd stop at the grocery store to buy carambars. For 10 cents, we'd get 15.
Olivia Ruiz: but of course, otherwise it's not funny... and malakoffs, you didn't have the... me, malakoffs were my big thing when I was a kid.
Gérard Bertrand: So you know what? So you know what? I fell down because there's a tobacco shop in Narbonne...
Olivia Ruiz: But...
Gérard Bertrand: at the bottom of the Carcassonne bridge selling Malakoff.
Olivia Ruiz: I know, next to the beautiful hotel behind the station, right?
Gérard Bertrand : no no no no no, the one at the bottom of the Carcassonne bridge, you know that was closed for a long time...
Olivia Ruiz: Well, that was the one, I think.
Gérard Bertrand: no, and he sells Malakoffs. So I just go there to buy a few when I buy the paper because it reminds me of...
Olivia Ruiz: and they don't taste the same.
Gérard Bertrand : uh...
Olivia Ruiz: don't you think they taste a little different?
Gérard Bertrand : no...no, it's our taste that has changed, it's not the same.
Olivia Ruiz: ha yeah, that's quite possible, that's quite possible.
Gérard Bertrand : he yes, he yes he yes it's not the same. So concerning...
Olivia Ruiz: Well, what a delightful thing to say!
Gérard Bertrand : It's good, isn't it ?!
Olivia Ruiz : rolalalala, good at the same time when we studied with Alléno I ???
Gérard Bertrand: and then listen...
Olivia Ruiz: I don't see how we can't do something big.
Gérard Bertrand : tell me a little bit about yourself because you're very eclectic, because of course singing, music, theatre, writing... what's still missing ?... of course your private life, mum etc... but what's missing in your madness or in your will to create, what would you like to do ? The picture you make of it too...what is it that you would like to explore that you haven't done yet?
Olivia Ruiz: So I did a little bit but not enough, I admit that being behind the camera is still something I'd really like to do. I love being an actress because imagine, it's as if you were going to be a waiter tomorrow, what a pleasure it is not to be the boss, what a pleasure it is to be the boss's tool. What a holiday it is when you're used to dealing with 25 guys and...well, less.
Gérard Bertrand: 350.
Olivia Ruiz: Here you go.
Gérard Bertrand: but you're already a lot.
Olivia Ruiz: Yeah, but then there's...
Gérard Bertrand: Because when... you declared a "state of emergency" in 2019, it was a TV movie, wasn't it? And now you'd like to get behind the camera because it's a logical continuation for you?
Olivia Ruiz: Yes, I admit that "the chest of drawers with drawers of colour" I wrote it like a film, really weighing the images.
Gérard Bertrand: That's right.
Olivia Ruiz: Sometimes I would stop and do the voices of the characters. I've got some, I've got some stuff in my phone where I've got the three sisters arguing half in Spanish, half in Occitan, half in French because I needed it to be very embodied for my writing. So here's maybe...
Gérard Bertrand: What is your model, what are or what is your model as a director? I'm impressed by Clint Eastwood because the way he holds the camera is incredible! And the speed at which he films.
Olivia Ruiz: ha yes, that's great! Yeah, but it's true that I tend to look for models at medium height, because you're dealing with one of the masters who has...
Gérard Bertrand : yes...
Olivia Ruiz: Here you go...
Gérard Bertrand: but he goes fast, you saw it's not the most expensive budgets for him, he films very quickly.
Olivia Ruiz: No, you're right, you're right, you're right. And it's always a great exercise for actors because it's fast. And he flies helicopters, planes and...no, but the guy's still a thing...in the French you see, I love Maïwenn, I love Noémie Lvovsky.
Gérard Bertrand : ha yes.
Olivia Ruiz: I obviously love Almodovar is part of my cult, but so are the others, Carlos Saura. As soon as it touches on Latin cinema, it touches a strong sensibility in me.
Gérard Bertrand: And you see a difference...do you see a big difference between Spanish and French cinema? Because it's two auteur cinemas, what's the difference for you? Because we know Almodovar but there are certainly others...but do you see a big difference between the Spanish and the French approach to cinema?
Olivia Ruiz: I find that every time it plays with codes that are risky and I love that limit. Often you're on the verge of kitsch with Spanish.
Gérard Bertrand: Yes.
Olivia Ruiz: Sometimes you're into something you don't know. You tell yourself to God it's going to be a telenovela and then you end up in a dreamlike thing. It's more sensual.
Gérard Bertrand: Yeah.
Olivia Ruiz: It's more cutting-edge, less cerebral, more of a body thing. So it's true that I'm extremely sensitive to it, but you've got a lot of French directors that I love, Dupontel, you know. Dupontel is really a tone that speaks to me. This funny thing touches me...here it is...
Gérard Bertrand: And what's your favourite place in Spain if there is one?
Olivia Ruiz: I love Granada, but I think it's still Portlligat.
Gérard Bertrand: Yes.
Olivia Ruiz: touching Cadaqués. When you pass behind Cadaqués and go to Dali's house, that little fishing port there...
Gérard Bertrand: Yes.
Olivia Ruiz: You have nothing, just a small residence, a small hotel. There...
Gérard Bertrand: I feel the same way because as soon as I cross the border, the simple fact of hearing another language makes you feel out of place and we're lucky because we're an hour away by car...
Olivia Ruiz: And yeah.
Gérard Bertrand: So it's still a great privilege to be able to play on both frontiers like that. And so for three months now, everything has come full circle.
Olivia Ruiz: but it's gonna... normally everything's gonna be unlocked on the 22nd, we're counting on it.
Gérard Bertrand : so I lost...it's disconnected you see I have a little technical problem.
Olivia Ruiz: ha...
Gérard Bertrand: can you hear me now?
Olivia Ruiz: Yeah, I can hear you.
Gérard Bertrand : Oh, that's it, I had a technical problem, I'd unplugged my microphone. So, boss, what are we going to eat here? Because Olivia is ready, we're going to taste the, we're going to taste the Tautavel now Olivia.
Olivia Ruiz: Come on.
Gérard Bertrand: we are going to taste the Tautavel, 2018 vintage. So, chef, where are we now?
Laurent Chabbert : So now we're in the OPs.
Gérard Bertrand : Well, that's why it's no coincidence, we're in the Eastern Pyrenees, we're in the Catalans. What's up?
Laurent Chabbert: so the Catalan veal that grazed, so the Vedell calf as it is actually called over there. So with the shallot sauce...the rib I grilled it on the barbecue, a real mousline purée, just we added a little bit of olive oil to give it a bit of body, the new potato chips, some herbs, some oxalis especially to bring the acidity. And now I'm going to put the shallot sauce on you.
Gérard Bertrand : What do you have to show me? What are you going to eat?
Olivia Ruiz: So I'm good-looking. It's an artichoke filled... look how beautiful.
Gérard Bertrand : ah yes, it's beautiful. So I'm going to tell you, you're going to enjoy it, but you know that artichoke and wine are complicated, but it's magnificent.
Olivia Ruiz: ah, no, I don't know.
Gérard Bertrand: What's in it?
Olivia Ruiz: But I think he'll think right. Then I guess the idea is to eat it with the leaves.
Gérard Bertrand: Yes, with the fingers especially.
Olivia Ruiz: I imagine he'll be thinking about your wine. Obviously it's better with your fingers.
Gérard Bertrand: ah yes. Is it good?
Gérard Bertrand: it's very good, there's shallot, it's very vinegary, there's chives.
Gérard Bertrand : So I'm going to taste the...I'm going to taste the veal chef. I'm hungry today...
Olivia Ruiz: a smoked fish... how good, olalalalalala.
Gérard Bertrand : then chief...
Olivia Ruiz: And I am...
Gérard Bertrand: excuse me, chef, how long has the veal been mature?
Olivia Ruiz: here we mature it not very long, on pink we'll mature it for about ten days, it's less important than beef, as much as beef we do 28 days but here...here we go and after the barbecue side and let the meat rest a little more of what we did there.
Gérard Bertrand: Olivia, you have to come and taste this because it's a massacre.
Olivia Ruiz: Well, great, we'll do this again. I'll be back anyway. I go back and forth for the book's promotion but then the Tautavel but I really enjoy my South as much as I can, it's made me a good excuse to spend some time there because usually I'm always held up in Paris for work and there...
Gérard Bertrand: So you know we've got good news because the festival's still going ahead.
Olivia Ruiz: Oh, that's not great!
Gérard Bertrand: yes yes from July 21 to 26. Then with Dominique Rieux we changed the whole program because Ibrahim Maalouf his musicians were not available, Youri Buenaventura my friend he's stuck in Colombia so uh here we are, Pascal Obispo he was prevented so in fact we made a program that is not very jazz but which deserves to be spectacular because the jazz artists are often ... Jean Micolon had to come but he tells me if I come ...
Olivia Ruiz: You've had him a few times, too.
Gérard Bertrand: Yeah, but he's extraordinary. But the problem is he told me if I come to France I'm in quarantine in France and when I come back I'm in quarantine in England.
Olivia Ruiz: Well, it's true that it's expensive to give a concert, even if it's nice to be at your place.
Gérard Bertrand : so he couldn't come so we have, we have two evenings, the 21st and the 22nd we have Patrick Bruel, the 23rd so we have Cali...
Olivia Ruiz: haaaa well come on I'm blocking you on the 23rd.
Gérard Bertrand: How? Yes, so we have Kimberose too, you know Kimberose?
Olivia Ruiz: Sounds familiar, but no, I don't put a face to it.
Gérard Bertrand : Yeah, she's a...you've got to look at...she's a young French artist who's got a bit of an Amy Winehouse voice you know she's got an extraordinary voice.
Olivia Ruiz: wow.
Gérard Bertrand: Yeah yeah yeah, you have to listen. Then we have Christophe Maé on the 25th and we have Jean-Baptiste Guégan on the 26th. But I know Cali's a friend of yours, right?
Olivia Ruiz: but of course, I'm booking the 23rd and 26th.
Gérard Bertrand: there you have it...
Olivia Ruiz: but on the 23rd I know we're still going to dance until 6 o'clock in the morning and I...so I'll even book the 24th without my kids what.
Gérard Bertrand: that's exactly it. So we have a nice program, we've reduced the gauge a little from 1500 to 1100 so that the public can feel comfortable. But we've made a point of making sure the festival's held because the artists I spoke to on the phone told me we really need to get back on the road because our job is to be on the road and the musicians have a hard life because it's not very easy for musicians, the occasional performers, to be on the road.
Olivia Ruiz: It's terrible, terrible, and above all we are not given any information. We were expecting a lot from last week's speech, but in the end we're all in a kind of artistic vagueness that's starting to wear us down...
Gérard Bertrand: so we've taken the ground by the horns and we're moving forward because it's important, that's it and so I'm pleased that you're joining us and I know that Cali will be happy.
Olivia Ruiz: Well, yes, but even more unbridled, that's the problem.
Gérard Bertrand : Yes yes, you know that during his live show we did some boles de Picolat, do you know the boles de Picolat?
Olivia Ruiz: ho but I love it, of course. You should try mine because they're pretty good too.
Gérard Bertrand : ha bon? Ha, but I'm interested in that.
Olivia Ruiz: so what did you do? You made veal and beef? Or did you make veal and pork?
Gérard Bertrand : so tell us, tell us...
Laurent Chabbert: Yeah, with pork too. Actually there's veal, beef and pork.
Olivia Ruiz: What did you do? Did you put sprockets in, too?
Laurent Chabbert : and after a little boletus and tomato sauce. And now we have it, so I've put it in the aperitifs finally offered as soon as you arrive at the restaurant so direct you can eat it yeah.
Gérard Bertrand: I enjoy the time you spend talking to him.
Olivia Ruiz: Well, yeah, I guess. Oh, but I'm not done.
Gérard Bertrand : No, but I'm the chef, he took advantage of it...
Olivia Ruiz: Tonight when I have all this stuff at home, I don't need...
Gérard Bertrand: the chef took advantage of it so I remind everyone that the restaurant is open every day for lunch and dinner and that we now also have a tapas formula, a formula on the terrace. I would also like to remind you that on Sunday evening we are celebrating music with of course a very festive formula around a jazz band with tapas etc. It's going to be fun.
Laurent Chabbert : Yes, well, it's not really tapas on Sunday evening, it's more like a four-course tasting menu.
Gérard Bertrand: Okay. And at noon it's Father's Day.
Laurent Chabbert : and at noon it's Father's Day, so sorry, we already have more room, but here we are...for the evening, in fact, we still have a few tables left, so make sure you book what you want.
Gérard Bertrand: so the chef is in good shape, me too, in fact I've tested all the dishes so he's getting ready for the festival. So listen to me Olivia, tell me a little bit about the chest of drawers with the coloured drawers because I'm showing it there, so it's your new novel which is available in all good bookshops and online sites, so...
Olivia Ruiz: But first the bookstores, you were right to start there because it's important. There too, the confinement has been very damaging for them. And they are passionate people like us, craftsmen who fight for their babies, it's important, you were right to say so. Listen, this is the story of a young woman who all her life looks at her grandmother's dresser with her little cousins and she says "bug" but what is she hiding in there? How come we can't go near it? What does she have to hide in there? And so there it is...
Gérard Bertrand: you can feel the experience there, you can feel the experience there.
Olivia Ruiz: and no, unfortunately, I would have liked it so much, but no, I would have dreamed of it. And so they look at this chest of drawers and then the grandmother as soon as they get close to it screams so they don't know what's inside. And when the grandmother died, this young woman went back home to Paris, after burying her grandmother in the south. As soon as she opens the door...the naughty one, the chest of drawers...so she sits down and for one night she opens the drawers of that chest of drawers and she finds in each drawer an object and a letter and that grandmother who is going to tell her all her life from the moment in 1939 when she leaves Spain because her parents made a decision and put Rita, the heroine, and her two sisters to flee the Francist regime and the bombing that came to Barcelona. And we're going to follow her, we're going to follow her in her love stories to her problem of never feeling either from here or there, the way she sometimes feels like throwing everything away and saying I'm no longer Spanish, I'm nothing anymore and how she goes on afterwards...here we are at the Marseillette café and how these 4 generations of women are going to build themselves up with this particular heritage which is that of exile which is still something and above all...I know you're going to understand why I'm telling it like this. When you love the place where you were born, where you grew up, at the time when everything in your life is going crazy, at a given moment when the perfume, for me from the garrigue, the rock that you find in the Corbières, the slate, all of a sudden it's like a house, there's nothing going on but I know that the train passes Nîmes and that's it...I'm starting to think that there you risk nothing more, soon you risk nothing more. There you go, and there you go, so that's why exile is a subject that touches me because first of all I am the product of three grandparents from this exile and also because, in love with my land and hyper-regionalist and all that, it's true that I am sensitive to people who have been forced to give up their land...that's it.
Gérard Bertrand : So you wanted to, you would like to read us a little passage, no?
Olivia Ruiz: But of course, so what's...
Gérard Bertrand : listen I haven't read it yet because I bought it today, I'm going to read it during my holidays, so of course I leave you free to tell us what you would like to tell us.
Olivia Ruiz: Listen, as I've given you a little start with her sisters, with this little girl who inherits the chest of drawers, maybe I'll start with the first chapter, with the first drawer. So it's no longer the little girl we heard during the prologue who says that her grandmother left her this; we move on to the grandmother's voice. And it's called the baptism medal, it's the first object that the little girl is going to find in the first drawer.
Olivia Ruiz: "Live Play".
Gérard Bertrand: It's beautiful!
Olivia Ruiz: We'll stop there.
Gérard Bertrand: and you know, you're quite right, because I'm already imagining the screenplay for your next film, and there's something there.
Olivia Ruiz: You know what makes this experience so strong for me is that the first few rounds are exactly what I didn't dare hope for, it's to the credit of people who tell me we read the book and then we questioned our parents, not necessarily Spanish parents, Polish parents, parents...that's it. And the dialogue that it provokes in the few who have already read it, the pride of origins that is inherent to people who didn't feel especially rich from their parents' trip, it's really the most beautiful gift. Afterwards it is also a book with passion in love, with very funny things and all that. But it's true that this heritage is quite central to the book and it's received as such by the first readers, it's great.
Gérard Bertrand: and I'm sure that when you wrote it, sometimes the pen held itself, that is, it ran, the pen ran faster than your thoughts. Because somehow you imagined something that could still have been part of your roots and your origins, cariño for example is something you use often so you've appropriated it completely what, it's hard to get out of that story afterwards. I'm telling you that I like it because my grandmother had a chest of drawers like this with a thousand drawers and so my sister and I used to fight over whether we could...when we were kids, sleep, crawl into bed there. And so when she left we made a lot of discoveries too, letters and so on, it was very moving. So that's what...
Olivia Ruiz: You're going to have to tell me about that because now that I'm a writer I need beautiful, fantastic material like that.
Gérard Bertrand: that's exactly it. So, chief, what do we do now?
Laurent Chabbert: There you go, I've just opened the jar.
Gérard Bertrand : So you've got a little dessert too?
Olivia Ruiz: Uh... yeah, which is in the fridge. Hold on. I'll be right there.
Gérard Bertrand: So what do we have, boss?
Laurent Chabbert: we left on a baba like the rum baba quite simply but we took the wine.
Gérard Bertrand: That's beautiful, you took it, you put it with wine, right?
Laurent Chabbert: there you go, we made a mulled wine in fact, and we got our wine back.
Gérard Bertrand : Oh yes, and in a cup?
Laurent Chabbert: In a jar like that you can take it away.
Gérard Bertrand: are you going to serve him like that too?
Laurent Chabbert : We're going to serve it like that in a restaurant.
Olivia Ruiz: I'm not going to take the baba challenge, it's more like a tiramisu I think.
Gérard Bertrand : oh listen, that's not bad either. But you can start tasting it.
Laurent Chabbert: and then we added some redcurrants, some blackberries, some blackcurrants to bring more sweetness and sweetness in fact. And then, like mulled wine, we have a lot of spices.
Gérard Bertrand: in my opinion all the customers will take the jar away from you. I'm going to taste it anyway...
Olivia Ruiz: I don't know about you, Gerard, but I think it's fantastic. It's a kind of tiramisu, but the coffee is very light, with crushed hazelnuts...
Gérard Bertrand : I have to dive to the bottom because the wine is at the bottom, there's a wall too, isn't there?
Laurent Chabbert: yes, blackberry, redcurrant, blackcurrant.
Gérard Bertrand: It's very good. It's not good, it's not very good, it's excellent. We're going to taste the Languedoc, the third wine, the 2017, because it's a lighter wine than the Tautavel. So I remind you that everything...
Olivia Ruiz: That one? Where did this one come from then?
Gérard Bertrand: This one comes from the Narbonne side, okay? It's a Languedoc, so it's a Syrah and a Grenache that is vinified and aged in barrels for 12 months. So, 2017 is a great vintage, it's a very dry vintage. I don't know if you remember the summer of 2017, it was very hot, it didn't fall a drop of water and so it's wines...
Olivia Ruiz: It has been a great tragedy for the farmers here.
Gérard Bertrand : So some villages had to...
Olivia Ruiz: and there had been some extra frost, there had been something improbable.
Gérard Bertrand : it was a complicated year, it was a year of 13 moons, you know the years of 13 moons for farmers and wine growers are always complicated.
Olivia Ruiz: You know, I come from a family of farm workers, not a farmer but a worker, so wine has always been something I've always harvested, it's always been something... so the Languedoc.
Gérard Bertrand: but you know, in Marseillette, we're in the Minervois, not the Corbières.
Olivia Ruiz : so you can imagine that my parents' house is on the banks of the river Aude. So in front of the house I have the Corbières, behind the house I have the Minervois.
Gérard Bertrand: because in fact you see Laric.
Olivia Ruiz: See, I'm... I'm... I'm seeing the whole Laric from one end to the other. Well, behind it I can't see the black mountain, but there it is. But we're really in that place and it's true that I'm...I'm going to have just as many favourites on territories like La Livinière or Camplong, it's true that this land is incredible!
Gérard Bertrand: she talks to you mostly.
Olivia Ruiz: ha well in the wine she talks to me because it's true that...it's beyond...it's really a place beyond who's going to use reason what. And the same goes for ben, here's from Tautavel, from Fitou. But I also have a real connection with those, with those perfumes that are more structured but that correspond completely to my...
Gérard Bertrand: and you didn't tell us, you didn't tell us...you like to cook I suppose when we listen to you.
Olivia Ruiz: ha I love it! I love it!
Gérard Bertrand: and what's your...what's your...what's your favourite thing?
Olivia Ruiz: Oh well, Narbonne beach I have nothing to cook so it was hell but it's true that I cook mostly as a child so for the last four years everything has been a question of making my son eat unusual things. So we're on asparagus, crayfish, coriander salads. You see, we try to get little things like this fresh enough in the summer. A lot of things made with melon, verbena, gazpacho...he loves it, even at Narbonne beach for 3 months I made a small aromatic garden. And in Paris it's the same. And then he already has everything he needs, chives, sage ... he already knows, four and a half years, everything he needs and we cook quite a bit together. But I love my grandmothers' dishes, all that is beef bourguignon, I want old simmered dishes, I haven't tried things like beef tongue and all that...but I like blanquettes, I like them to stick to the bottom of the pan.
Gérard Bertrand: It's good though.
Olivia Ruiz: Yeah, but it's too much for me. All that is, all that is... sweetbreads and all that, that's it, that's me textures.
Gérard Bertrand: Good boss, I think you could hire him for the summer. He'll hire you for the summer.
Olivia Ruiz: We can make a trade if you want.
Gérard Bertrand: No, but you know what, when you're available, we'll be doing a live kitchen show with you, it'll be even more fun. Right, chef?
Olivia Ruiz: ha but I love it! I grew up there, I love it! Even in the summer if you want the boys.
Gérard Bertrand: Yes, I'm going to take a bit of a break from the first to the fifteenth of August, so we're going to go back to live shows afterwards, but at the end of the summer yes, at the end of the summer.
Olivia Ruiz: Great! Yeah, I'm over here anyway. I'm not moving, I'm enjoying it.
Gérard Bertrand : Well listen to me I...I've remembered several things, first of all I'm going to invite you to lunch as soon as you're back.
Olivia Ruiz: I'm already coming on Monday to pick you up some bottles, first date.
Gérard Bertrand: then I would recommend the chest of drawers with coloured drawers, published by Lattes. In all the good bookshops in France. And then I recommend that you book your tickets for jazz at l'Hospitalet from July 21st to 26th. And you will certainly have the opportunity to meet Olivia Ruiz for a few nights. Here you go, so Olivia thank you, I kiss you...
Olivia Ruiz: Thank you boys, it was a pleasure! We thank Yannick Alléno, and his little guy, the card fell, you have the name in mind, wait...and Amar, from L'ascencion because it's still...
Gérard Bertrand: there you go and then you have a special dedication from Katia Daguet Alonso who is like you of Spanish origin, who has spoken with you and therefore kisses you too. Have a good weekend and see you next week.
Olivia Ruiz: Yeah, take care, boys, and we look forward to seeing you soon in the kitchen.
Gérard Bertrand: goodbye to all!
Olivia Ruiz: Goodbye, everybody!
Laurent Chabbert: goodbye.