The search for a water fountain goes on

The Richmond Arms
, West Ashling

THE DISH DETECTIVE: The Richmond Arms, West Ashling, near Chichester

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My wife and I and two friends took a trip to the French town of Antibes last weekend for some well-earned rest and recuperation,

But rest is the one thing we didn’t get! Located on the coast in the centre of the Cote D’Azur, Antibes is one of the best-kept secrets on the French Riviera, equidistant between the glitz and glamour, hustle and bustle of Monaco and St Tropez.

An aunt and uncle of mine have a yacht in the Antibes Marina of Port Vauban, so we try to get down there at every opportunity.

With billionaires like Roman Abromavich keeping superyachts in the marina, it is fair to say the French Riviera is not known as a budget holiday resort and bargains are tough to spot!

We have filmed at the Saturday antiques market, but it is a much more pleasurable experience without a film crew hovering on your shoulder!

I was on the lookout for an antique absinthe water dispenser as I collect wine and spirit-related antiques.

Absinthe is a high alcohol-content anise-flavoured green spirit made from the leaves of the Artemisia Absinthium and was popular in the late 19th century and early 20th century with the Bohemian artists of Paris.

It was believed to have certain hallucinogenic properties and Vincent van Gogh had been drinking it before he sliced off his own ear!

We decided to check out an absinthe bar for ourselves. The drink is consumed with the addition of iced water from a glass dispenser, or fountain, with small taps around the sides.

Sadly, the owner wouldn’t sell me one of his dispensers.So it was off to the antiques market the next morning, slightly worse for wear.

But they must be in demand as none could be found. Ah well, next time...