Newsletter January 2023

Bonjour à tous et à toutes !
Bonne Année
Je voulais tout d’abord vous présenter, tardivement, mes vœux et vous souhaiter, pour cette année qui débute, une bonne santé et de grands succès dans tous vos projets.

Best wishes for a safe, happy, and fulfilling 2023.  

  • French Classes start up again from 1st February 2023

If you haven’t already done so, please let me know if you will be continuing/returning/starting so groups can be organized. Proposed class times and levels are on the website but are relatively flexible.  Face to face classes will be held. Phone or email if you have any particular queries.
“Language is not a genetic gift, it is a social gift. Learning a new language is becoming a member of the club – the community of speakers of that language.” -Frank Smith
“Avoir une autre langue, c’est posséder une deuxième âme.” 
(To have another language is to possess a second soul.)   – Charlemagne

  • New:  French for les petits

    Two French mums, Typhaine and Suzanne, are proposing to set up a small kiddies play group for a couple of hours a week. Songs, stories and activities for two and a half to 6 year olds, all in French. Sound great ? For Francophones and future Francophiles.
    Please let Shelley know if you are at all interested and see if we can make this happen.
    Ph 07 578 9416 or
  • One Day in Provence –

Provence is home to the glamorous seaside village of Saint-Tropez, gorgeous Mediterranean food, stylish summer parties matched to Provence rosé wines that have taken the world by storm, from Los Angeles to Ibiza.
Organized by a trio of Frenchies who are keen to celebrate the end of summer in style, One Day in Provence with Aix rosé will gather 1000 people for a classic Provençal long lunch, by the water, at The Cloud, on Auckland waterfront, on Saturday 25th of March 2023.
Doors open at 12pm, lunch served from 1pm to 6pm – Dress code : Pink & White
$5 from each bottle of wine sold goes to Breast Cancer Cure.

  • À l’écran – French Movies

Local Cinemas:
Nothing specific noted at present, but always keep an eye out.  Big screen viewing is fantastic.
Check session times :
Rialto Tauranga:
Tivoli Papamoa :

French Film Festival :
The 2023 Festival dates have been announced – 1st-14th June in Tauranga – but not yet the films.  for details.                             

  • Au petit écran – on the Small Screen

Netflix :  The latest Netflix offering that is making waves around the world is called Les Combattantes (Women at War).  In France in 1914, as the German troops advance and the men depart for the frontlines, four women must grapple with the devastating consequences of war at home.

Library Movie Streaming: Free access to films and documentaries via Beamafilm and your Tauranga Library card
For more info:

  • DVDs to Lend Out
    I have approximately 120 French DVDs that anyone who is still able to view DVDs is most welcome to borrow. There are comedies and dramas, recent and older films, famous actors and less famous. All are subtitled in English. Let me know if you don’t have, but would like, the catalogue and then make your choice.  or ph 07 578 9416.  No charge.
  • Celebrate à la française


La Fête de la chandeleur :Candelmas
Happy flipping !  La chandeleur is on Thursday February 2nd and wafer-thin crêpes are on the menu.  Don’t forget that the first crêpe is the crêpe du chef – it unfailingly looks terrible so cannot be served. Fillings can be as simple as sugar and lemon – always a favourite – or as fancy as Aumônières de crêpes aux pommes et caramel beurre sale.

Let your imagination and taste buds go wild ! And … you are allowed to eat them on other days of the year as well.

Le Mardi gras: Shrove Tuesday
This year, it’s on Tuesday 21st March. As usual, food is of the “fatty” kind with beignets and gauffres, the mainstays of carnival stalls.

Le Poisson d’avril : April Fool’s Day
Worldwide the date is 1st April but it seems the tradition may have had its origins in the reform of the French calendar in the 16th century. In 1564 King Charles XIV of France moved the start of the year from the end of March to January 1. However, in a time without trains, a reliable post system or the internet, news often travelled slowly and the uneducated, lower-class people in rural France were the last to hear of and accept the new calendar. Those who failed to keep up with the change or who stubbornly celebrated the New Year between March 25th and April 1st, had jokes played on them. Pranksters would surreptitiously stick paper fish to their backs. The victims were thus called poisson d’avril, and so the tradition was born. Why a fish ? It is not clear, but the zodiac sign of Pisces (a fish) falls near April.

For le Poisson d’avril, the bakeries and chocolatiers make fish shaped pastries and chocolates in honour of the day.

  • Celebrate à la française – Les journées internationales
    A small selection of « world » days coming up over the next month :
  • Le 6 février : Journées mondiales sans téléphone mobile: Days Without Mobile phones
    The 6th February is Saint Gaston’s Day and this date was chosen as the French “No Phone” date because of a popular Nino Ferrer song in the 1960s with the chorus “Gaston, the phone is ringing, but no-one is answering”.  Check out the song here: The French date is perfect for us.  Sans problème sans téléphone.  NZ has a public holiday for Waitangi Day.
  • Le 11 fevrier : Journée internationale des femmes et des filles de science :
    International Day of Women and Girls in Science

    What do Rosalind Franklin (Great Britain), Henrietta Leavitt (USA) and Marie Curie France) have in common ?
    All three were women pioneers in their fields of science who, in their time, faced much prejudice from society.
    It was a woman, Chris Duggan, who launched “House of Science” here in Tauranga with the aim of increasing scientific literacy in NZ schools. House of Science loans out all-inclusive science resource kits for schools that provide everything a teacher needs plus hands on activities. With financing and support from the French Embassy, they are currently adding some French bilingual kits to their list of resources for use in French bilingual schools.  Anyone for a science class ?
  • Le 14 marsJournée internationale des maths: International Maths Day
    This date was not randomly chosen. Think of how Americans write their dates (9.11, for example) and you will understand why it falls on this particular day and also why it is called La Journée Mondiale du Pi as well.
    À l’école, en algèbre, j’étais du genre Einstein, mais plutôt Franck qu’Albert. – Philippe Geluck
    At school, in algebra, I was a sort of Einstein, but Frank rather than Albert.

  • Les Bonnes Adresses autour de chez nous !

French Soul Café – a new place in town

We (Emna and David) are extremely excited to be opening French Soul Café in beautiful Tauranga.

Emna, a French Pastry chef and baker (trained in Paris) along with partner David, a hospitality professional with experience in waiting in some great restaurants in both Paris and Tauranga.

You may recognise us from the local market scenes where we have had a stall selling croissants and other patisserie items for the past 3 years. French Soul Café  will be a combination of both the French and the New-Zealander culture.

Follow us on Insta and FB @frenchsoulcafe
Open from 7am to 2.30pm Monday – Friday
Address: 773 Cameron Road, Tauranga (on the city side of the hospital between 16th & 17th Ave)

Off road parking at the side and rear of building.


Benny & Brew – le café-bistrot français d’Otumoetai
Still the place for great coffee, awesome brunch and tasty French food with good vibes… Sam says: Lots of lovely patisserie  – fraisiers, tartes au citron meringuées, and also éclairs au chocolat – a perfect way to celebrate 28th January – French National Chocolate Cake Day !
And Petite info : nouveauté dans notre vitrine : tarte brûlée !!! So damned good !!!

The café is open from 7am to 2.30 pm, from Tuesday to Saturday.
Friday Night Theme Nights from 5pm :
Coming up : Friday 27th January – Tapas , ensuite soirée pizza, soirée gnocchis, with Japanese, le 17 Feb, et une soirée française in February too.

Keep an eye on their face book page, then head along.
Bon appétit!

Phone: 027 350 6315

Chez Moi Chocolaterie
Chez Moi – the Swiss Chocolate Shop in Waihi Beach is where you’ll find Ines, the Swiss chocolatier, and her chocolate.
The shop reopens on 27th January (Auckland Anniversary weekend). If you actually need an excuse to pop in (which I doubt), there’s Valentine’s Day and Easter coming up. And look at those flowers that need neither watering nor sunshine…

Address: 29 Wilson Road, Waihi Beach       Phone: 027 372 4093

Opening Hours: Wednesday – Sunday 10am – 4pm (Sunday to 3pm) but do check.

Email:      Facebook:

Dites-le avec le chocolat.  Say it with chocolate.

The Trading Post – le bistrot français de Paengaroa
From January 30th, the Trading Post is changing its hours. Monday to Thursday and Saturdays they will be open from 8.30am to 2.30pm.  On Fridays, you will still be able to dine as they will open from 8.30am to 8.30pm. Sunday is closed.
With a focus on creativity and seasonality, The Trading Post, Matariki Dish Challenge Champion 2022, changes its food menu every 6 to 8 weeks. Casual French & Mediterranean cuisine.
Ph: 07 262 0142 or

Weekend à la mer Painting Workshops

Audrey Dubois runs monthly painting nights from 6pm-9pm on Fridays. This is your chance to immerse yourself in art, and create a beautiful tableau with a French artist tutor. All materials are supplied. No prior experience required.

Coming up in February: Drawing, March: Pop Art/Palette Knife, April: Watercolours

Phone: 022 502 1671    Email:

Skydive Tauranga

Who’s up (or down (or upside down)) for a different perspective of the world ?
Skydive Tauranga offers unique views with a breath-taking mix of golden sand beaches, waterways, cities, and mountains. Tandem jump with Guillaume and you can do it all in French (or English).  New vocab (and sensations) guaranteed. Don’t forget, vouchers make great Christmas gifts !

Give Guillaume a call on 07 574 8533 or book online at! Facebook:

Pétanque au Mount
Wanting to play ? Ph 022 309 9143 or
Check on Facebook:

And lastly
If you are looking to widen your range of learning activities,
check out the site and have a great term 1.

À bientôt


Phone : 07 578 9416

Email :

PS:  If you no longer wish to receive info about French happenings in the area, or you receive a double up, please advise by return email.