While we wait for restaurants to reopen, the team here at Normandy Tourism has taken a (short) trip down memory lane to share with you some of our favourite memories of eating out around the region...
Ben Collier, Marketing Manager (English-speaking markets):
Some of the fondest memories I have of eating out in Normandy are times spent at La Table de la Villa restaurant in Le Tréport, located on the border with Picardy, next to the train station and facing the seafront. Book a table by the window and you’ll enjoy gorgeous views of the port, cliffs and sea while tucking into some truly delicious homemade dishes. La Table de la Villa is a small, family-run restaurant with a cosy relaxed atmosphere and friendly staff. I remember eating here one evening last October, gazing out at the lights of the town on the other side of the canal and the church perched high on the clifftop. You can also watch the blue funicular cars going up and down a track which passes through a tunnel in the cliffs! Le Tréport has a nostalgic feel to it and has managed to remain unspoilt and authentic over the passage of time. The restaurant itself is both unpretentious yet sophisticated, which goes down well with me. I obviously enjoy the fresh local fish dishes every time I visit, but the desserts are also heavenly and the wine selection is top notch. I can’t wait to enjoy the flavours and views again…
Valérie Joannon, Marketing Executive (English-speaking markets):
I thought I could easily go several weeks without visiting my favourite restaurant, which I usually frequent on a regular basis, but I have been waiting to go back there for several months now. The Hostellerie d’Acquigny is nestled in a peaceful village in the Eure department, halfway between Rouen and Evreux. This old post house has been turned into a lovely gourmet restaurant where you’ll receive a warm yet relaxed welcome and can indulge in some mouth-watering dishes. All of the ingredients used are local, and the chocolate comes straight from Michel Cluizel’s factory, located just a few miles down the road. I particularly miss the chocolatey desserts, washed down with a good glass of wine! With its quaint and colourful garden and the cosy hotel rooms on the first floor, this place really makes you feel at home. I’m sure you’ll enjoy the light, fresh and innovative cuisine just as much as I do. You can also purchase a gift card online if you fancy visiting the restaurant once things get back to normal again.
Fran Lambert, Senior Press Officer (UK & Ireland):
It’s been a while since I last enjoyed a meal at the restaurant at the Domaine Saint-Clair Le Donjon in Etretat. So long, in fact, that its talented Chef Gabin Bouguet has since been awarded his first Michelin star at age 31! Well, that’s reason if anything to get back there as soon as I possibly can. When I think back on the two times I was lucky enough to dine at Le Donjon, I remember that glorious round table looking out north-west towards the stunning cliffs made famous by Monet, flooded in golden sunset light. The service was faultless, my journalists and I made to feel like celebrities as we were treated to a succession of delicious dishes, boasting fresh seafood, locally sourced meat, Normandy cheese and fresh fruit and veg, all paired with fine wines, including a few produced at Normandy’s Les Arpents du Soleil vineyard. There are few places as atmospheric as this for an evening dinner, nor are there many restaurants that can rival such exquisite cuisine. I simply can’t wait to take my journalists back there!
Alison Weatherhead, Head of Communications:
My favourite local restaurant is le Moulin de Jean in Cuves. Where you ask? Cuves is situated just off the road between Sourdeval and Avranches in a stylishly renovated former watermill, and was originally owned by Jean-Christophe Novelli. This isolated spot has been our family’s local upmarket restaurant where we go on big occasions like when the children were born or after our wedding ceremony with our witnesses. And also when I fancy scrummy lunch out with my husband on a day off or to celebrate a birthday. The main reason we keep going back is to enjoy Jean-Marie’s lovely food, which is made from good, local, seasonal produce. He always adds a little extra something to the dishes which surprises and delights, from the amuse-bouche to the three varieties of chocolate mousse. I usually opt for a dish I would be hesitant to cook at like turbot and am never disappointed. There is a wide choice of dishes including vegetarian options, which goes down well with my veggie kids. The waiters are very friendly and unstuffy and the wine list is excellent. In the summer, you can sit outside on the terrace and soak up the atmosphere of the Normandy bocage in this little corner of foodie paradise.
Alexandre Lelouey, Communications Executive:
Last summer, my family and I went for a walk along the GR 223 hiking trail on the Cap de la Hague, a part of Normandy nicknamed ‘Little Ireland’. This hidden gem on the Cotentin peninsula shares many similarities with the Irish coast, including its climate, flora and fauna, and wild beauty. We walked the trail in the early morning, skirting the bay of Ecalgrain and crossing the Nez de Jobourg. After the morning’s walk, we returned to Goury, our starting point, for lunch. From April to September, Manuel and his team base themselves here and serve visitors excellent fish and chips. The fish is as fresh as it gets, and the chips are homemade using locally sourced potatoes. You need only spend a few euros on this simple but delicious dish – my advice is to wash it down with a mug of Père Mahieu cider (produced a few miles down the road) while sitting down with your feet in the water at the port facing Goury lighthouse. I can’t wait to go back to that exact spot!
For more information on food and drink in Normandy, visit the Normandy Tourism website.
Cover photo © Eléonore H./Fotolia.com