Bye Brittany, Hello Charente (almost)

Tuesday, June 22 – (northwest of Niort): We dallied by the pool this morning to get the posts off that had been delayed. Then we packed up and went into Noirmoutier where we found the weekly market and bought two mariner’s shirts (pic to come).

At lunchtime, we found a wonderful restaurant, Le Petit Bouchot, which is the model for the sort of provincial restaurant with ambitions of just the right scale that we search so hard for. It had a fine lunch formule:

and we enjoyed the sardine pate so much that we used the iPad on the spot to look up a few recipes (canned sardines, butter, lemon juice, salt and pepper):

The entrees were shrimp samosas:

and oysters:

The plats were dorade:

and lieu:

with the very welcome mousse au chocolate for dessert:

Here’s the damage:

We left Noirmoutier with full stomachs at 2:30p with quite a bit of driving to do and no real idea of which way to go beyond “in the direction of Cognac.” We raced to get to the Niort tourist office before they closed — and just made it, because they had moved to a new location. We looked over the chambre d’hote listings and selected this one:

which was located way out in the countryside. They offered a table d’hote, something that we’d not yet tried, so, although we were still not hungry from our large lunch, we agreed to join them. It was a wonderfully happy decision. All eight guests sat around a large table in the courtyard of the farmhouse:

and shared the home-made aperitifs:

Then a terrific chevre chaud salad with potatoes, walnuts and lardons:

The main dish was a pork loin roast with peas:

And then a spectacular cheese tray (you can see that we’re in chevre country!):

And a fruit salad for dessert:

One Response to Bye Brittany, Hello Charente (almost)

  1. Wheeler Ruml says:

    OMG – that cheese tray!!

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