Strolling all afternoon around Geneva on a hot day makes you think about ice cream and water and not about detox from alcohol. Unless you decide to sit in one of the lakeside restaurants or cafès where almost everyone savours a glass or a bottle of something worth celebrating the rare sunny day in the city on the footstep of the Alps. My lunch was a freshly baked roll take-away from a Swiss bakery so I was not exposed to any serious temptation, not yet.
Pot of Japanese tea

Teppanyaki dinner at a Japanese restaurant

I love having the raw slices of sashimi with a glass of an Alsatian Gewurtztraminer, Riesling or even an oaky and rich Chardonnay from Burgundy or California. Japanese teppanyaki is a different story though. The dishes are prepared on an iron flat pan, and range from vegetables, eggs to meats like beef or seafood like prawns or squids. Usually, rich savoury sauces used in these dishes make them so intense and flavour-rich that a cup of tea rather than wine is a better option as a liquid accompaniment to the meal.
I had a delicious green brown rice tea blended with green tea called Genmaicha, which is sometimes also called the ‘Popcorn Tea’ (it is popping when the rice is roasted). Its smoky, baked, nutty and grassy aroma (from the green tea with which it is blended) plays down the intense flavours of the teppanyaki sauces. Very low in caffeine, genmaicha can be freely enjoyed in the evening without worrying about not getting a good night’s sleep. I am starting to ponder about giving up alcohol for good. The detox works, it seems. I do not want to predict the future, rather ask me once I will have wine with food again in three days – once my palate gets exposed to the sophisticated depth of great wine, will I prefer tea to wine then?

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