L'autre vie #6 Our " other " life in France.
"Tuesday night dinner in a small french village" -by Rae-Helen Fisenden.
Warning! Food photos abound in this blog and they will make you hungry!
We have been working pretty non-stop this trip with hardly any evenings out. Today Neil did more work in the garden, re-sealed the wooden floors with his magic polish and I ironed and made beds and wrote a blog. We decided we'd eat out tonight as tomorrow we head back to our Beaulieu house and to other commitments there.
A couple of years ago we stumbled upon an authentic french restaurant located in a tiny village 5 minutes drive from our Berbiguières cottage. ( We actually time the drives to be accurate. ) This restaurant has never disappointed us and I thought I'd write about our experience tonight from start to finish and include lots and lots of photos. Remember, it's a Tuesday night in regional France.
Siorac is the name of the tiny village where the restaurant is located and it is quite beautiful as you can see.
I'm constantly surprised that one can stumble upon the most marvellous restaurants seemingly in the middle of the rural but exquisite Perigord/Dordogne region.
It's obvious people come from near and far because of its reputation and because it is an Auberge. That's a classification like a Hotel but with accommodation and meals provided. Often these Auberges have really excellent chefs, staff and food and this Auberge is definitely no exception. They are also often a family owned business hence their attitude to their business is genuine and welcoming.
This particular restaurant is called "Auberge du trèfle à Quatre Feuilles". Sounds wonderful perhaps ( but for the record it is quite difficult in french to pronounce ) however, translated it means:
Hotel of the four leafed clover.
We booked and arrived at 7 p.m. There were several couples already seated and we were ushered to a lovely quiet table for two. We made our choice from the set menus.
Firstly though, we received an "amuse bouche". A free taster from the chef to whet the appetite. This is a normal custom in french restaurants. It was a delicious Gazpacho laced with tabasco and served in little glasses with a straw. Note the serviette in the shape of a four leafed clover and the red wine- which was exceptional. Mainly a Merlot with a bit of Cab Sav and Cab Franc in the blend. Happy Neil posing for a rare photo.
Next we had the appetiser which featured seasonal aspèrges. Asparagus tips with a warm asparagus soup and a perfectly medium boiled egg. It was absolutely sublime.
Oh my word!! Doesn't that look amazing?
Next our main course... Magret de Carnard in a Blackcurrent ( cassis ) sauce. Duck! Wonderful duck! With crispy skin and lovely Spring veggies.
Finally on our 27 euro three course menu was dessert. Five choices! Neil had Pain D'épice d'orange. Spicy orange cake with nougat ice cream, chantilly cream and hot chocolate. Decadent. I had the Chef's home made Bailey's ice cream with salted butter and dark chocolate pieces. It was SO good. And those little orange decorative additions are known as ground cherries or golden berries not to be confused with gooseberries. They have the texture of a small tomato but are sweet and delicious.
So then, as I promised , I'm taking you right to the end. Here's our bill. And if you change that to your currency you'll quickly recognise what extraordinary value this is.
Come visit this wonderful piece of paradise and eat like Kings for a very minimal amount!