Is my phobia of upmarket restaurants misplaced?

Scotching my bright idea of a stiff gin for Dutch courage in the bar across the road, Catriona bounded straight for the door of the Colombe d’Or. My restaurant phobia was fast upon me and I followed her into the bourgeois holy of holies more slowly than a nudist climbing through a barbed wire fence. We were half an hour early and directed to the bar. Here my plea for strong spirits was again denied and I had to make do with champagne. Speechless with ecstasy — this was her birthday treat — Catriona toddled off with her flute to cast her eye over the Miros, Matisses and Chagalls in

We’re wrong to think the impressionists were chocolate boxy

One Sunday evening in the autumn of 1888 Vincent van Gogh and Paul Gauguin went for a walk. They headed out of Arles into the countryside and when they looked back towards town they saw a sunset so splendid that each was inspired to paint a masterpiece. One of these, Gauguin’s painting bearing the timely title ‘Human Misery’, is among the star exhibits in a new exhibition at the Royal Academy. All the works in this show come from a delightful small museum in the northern suburbs of Copenhagen, housed in the early 20th-century mansion from which it takes its name, Ordrupgaard. This was the dwelling of Wilhelm Hansen (1868–1936),