A not-so-hidden gem

This posting is about a gem of a place that seems to have been hidden in plain sight.

And we owe it to friends Elisabeth and Gerhard for convincing us to try Le Bistrot d’Epicure — a restaurant that my wife Jan and I had driven past countless times. For some reason, perhaps because it’s beside a relatively busy route, we had never been attracted to the restaurant. But it turns out that it’s terrific.

Le Bistrot d’Epicure lies on the north side of the D703, which runs from Beynac to Saint Cyprien, and on to Bergerac. The restaurant is quite close to Saint Cyprien, so it’s not a long drive from Daglan.

Our friends noticed it as they were driving to their holiday home in Daglan last week. It was at night, and the restaurant (a former farmhouse) appeared to be quite lovely and welcoming, glowing with light and full of people. So we made a reservation for lunch during the week.

As it happens, it was a rather cool, gray and drizzly sort of day, so there was no way we could eat on the restaurant’s lovely terrace. But inside, the seating is comfortable, the art that covers the walls is attractive and modern, the service is attentive and friendly, and the food is quite wonderful — both in taste and presentation. It’s run by a couple, Marina and Chris, and has all sorts of nice personal touches.

All four of us opted for a somewhat reduced menu — just a plat principal and a dessert, at 28 euros each. However, we also received a good selection of amuse-bouches, including a delicious cold soup that followed this tray of goodies:

Each bite was delicious.

Each bite was delicious.

Elisabeth chose cod, which was served on a bed of fresh green asparagus, like this:

The cod was perfectly cooked.

The cod was perfectly cooked.

I had fish as well, and thoroughly enjoyed this plate of salmon:

My attractive plate of salmon and accompaniments.

My attractive plate of salmon and accompaniments.

For dessert, Jan and I both had strawberries — thinly cut and served with fine slices of basil, like this:

A sweet plate of fresh tastes.

A sweet plate of fresh tastes.

The total for lunch — counting a kir each, plus two bottles of Sancerre and  a bottle of sparkling water for the table, and a coffee each — averaged just under 55 euros a person. We’re already planning our first return trip.

If you want to know more, the telephone number is 05 – 53 – 30 – 40 – 95, and the restaurant’s website is at http://www.le-bistrot-depicure.com



This entry was posted in Food, French food, Life in southwest France, Restaurants in France, Restaurants in the Dordogne and tagged , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

6 Responses to A not-so-hidden gem

  1. Paul says:

    Thanks Loren. Checked out the website and the menu looks very interesting. Will make the effort to visit when we’re in France in the summer.

  2. Gaynor Black says:

    The food looks great. Im surprised with a name like Le Bistrot d’Epicure that you hadn’t been there before!

    • loren24250 says:

      thanks Gaynor. I know what you mean. But the place is right alongside a fairly busy route, and we figured “Ah — for tourists only.” But it turns out that the restaurant is really, really good.

  3. Sarah Wilson says:

    This food looks fabulous, Loren!
    My husband will be visiting your area in June (from NZ). Would I be able to ask for your thoughts and suggestions on a few things? If this is ok, do you have an email address?
    Many thanks, Sarah

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