French Restaurant Review: La Nauve, Cognac | EUROtoday

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Set in Cognac, the lodge La Nauve homes two eating places serving daring however scrumptious meals – and fairly excellent desserts too due to gifted pâtissier Simon Souchaud.

Formerly the house of a Cognac producer, this elegant 18th-century mansion has been renovated to create an intimate and really charming lodge with nice model. Not solely does it have an incredible location simply on the sting of Cognac, one of the charming small cities in France, but it surely additionally has two glorious eating places, each below the path of chef Anthony Carballo, who apprenticed with Michelin three-star chef Yannick Alléno at Le Meurice in Paris, and the exceptionally gifted pastry chef Simon Souchaud.

Even should you're not staying on the lodge, La Brasserie des Flâneurs is a really helpful tackle not solely as a result of its cooking is great, however as a result of it's open every day and serves lunch from midday till 2.30pm, a beneficiant window for provincial France. This makes it a really perfect spot to cease for lunch should you're visiting the cellars of Cognac or touring alongside the Atlantic coast.

The two cooks at La Nauve, Anthony Carballo and Simon Souchaud © Lenaka

During a pleasant weekend just lately spent at La Nauve, we dined on the brasserie after we arrived at midday. This good-looking stoned-floored eating room with beamed ceiling occupies the previous distillery. On the autumn day we visited, it was stuffed with gentle and was busy with Cognac producers entertaining worldwide purchasers.

The menu, which modifications frequently, has many dishes for 2, so eating as two {couples}, two of us loved the grilled sea bass with citrus sauce and the opposite cut up an excellent sous-chef (breaded rooster full of ham and Comté cheese). These mains got here with a moreish selection of facet dishes, together with a fricassee of mushrooms, cauliflower au gratin, mesclun, pomme Dauphine and a millefeuille of root greens. Desserts have been excellent, too, notably the fig and walnut tart.

Notes, which is the lodge's gastronomic restaurant, occupies an intimate Napoleon III model salon for 20 covers and is open for lunch and dinner from Wednesday to Sunday. The two prix-fixe menus change frequently in response to what's greatest in market and the chef's newest inspirations, however although I discover 'shock' menus a fairly tiresome and dated conference, we had an outstanding meal right here. Some dishes have been conventional, together with an impeccably cooked fillet of salt-marsh lamb with smoked aubergine, black garlic and anchovy jus, whereas others have been notably daring for a eating room in provincial France.

Dressed crabmeat, for instance, got here with two completely different garnishes – anise and caviar, the previous being the extra unique; whereas a pearly fillet of yellow pollack, a nice however timid fish, acquired the tongue-in-cheek sensuality of a torch tune singer in a cabaret with a potent fish inventorycitrus foam and yellow garnishes of hazelnut and nasturtium leaves.

This pleasant meal concluded with a chic lemon and honey cake served below a honeycomb-like pastry lattice, an ideal instance of why Simon Souchaud is likely one of the greatest pastry cooks working in France proper now. And one final phrase to the smart: don’t miss breakfast throughout a keep at La Nauve as a result of Souchaud's croissants and pastries are merely beautiful.

La Nauve, 2 Rue de la Nauve, Cognac, Tel. +33 05 48 17 03 70,

Average à la carte at La Brasserie des Flâneurs €55; prix-fixe menus at Notes four-courses €70, 9 programs €110.

From France Today Magazine

Lead picture credit score: © MARIE DESPREZ, LENAKA

Alexander Lobrano grew up in Connecticut, and lived in Boston, New York and London earlier than transferring to Paris, his house at present, in 1986. He was European Correspondent for Gourmet journal from 1999 till its closing, and has written about meals and journey for Saveur , Bon Appetit, Food & Wine, the New York Times, Wall Street Journal, Guardian, Travel & Leisure, Departures, Conde Nast Traveler, and plenty of different publications within the United States and the United Kingdom. He is the creator of HUNGRY FOR PARIS, 2nd Edition (Random House, 4/2014), HUNGRY FOR FRANCE (Rizzoli, 4/2014), and MY PLACE AT THE TABLE, newly printed in June 2021.

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French Restaurant Review: La Nauve, Cognac