A restaurant comes to us

Restaurants throughout France, as in so many other countries, are closed these days, as governments try to control the spread of the Covid-19 virus. And much as my wife Jan and I enjoy restaurants in the Greater Daglan Area, we think the closures make a lot of sense. A necessary evil, if you will.

Some restaurants, however, are offering a special service by providing food to take out. And because of a phone call from our friend Rosemary, my wife Jan learned that Daglan’s own lovely restaurant Le Petit Paris is one of those. In fact, the restaurant is posting its daily dishes on a sign board in front. No entrées; only main courses (one per day); and a couple of desserts. Main dishes only 11 euros.

So on Tuesday evening, Jan and I decided we would try the main dish for Wednesday — lamb curry — and she phoned the restaurant, speaking directly with Madame Guilbot (Martine), the charming hostess (and wife of chef Sylvain), who knows us quite well. When Jan reminded her that the food should not contain any wheat flour (because Jan is allergic to gluten), Martine said that of course the chef knew all about it. Pick-up time was set for 12:30.

At precisely 12:30 on Wednesday, Jan headed out for the short walk to the restaurant — only to find that Madame Guilbot was walking down the street towards our house, carrying our lunch. Such service! I was in the kitchen at the time, and I could hear the two women chatting in the street below, and could tell that Madame Guilbot was apologizing for something, though I couldn’t hear the details. In any case, Jan came into our house in a few minutes, bearing a number of serving containers.

To kick off, here’s a look at my plate of lamb curry with rice, which I thought was well cooked and nicely flavoured, although perhaps not as spicy as the Indian food that Jan makes (quite often, actually):

Not very spicy, but still yummy.

As it turned out, there had been a mistake, and Madame Guilbot was most apologetic. It seems that Chef had forgotten about the no-wheat-flour request, and had indeed used some flour as a thickener in the sauce. So, what to do? Well, the restaurant not only offered Jan her own lunch — a slow-cooked piece of beef in a rich and dark, gluten-free sauce — but provided us with another lamb curry at no charge (which I had for lunch today). Here’s Jan’s beef and rice dish:

No steak knife needed!

When Jan learned that she was  having beef for lunch, instead of curry, she changed cutting implements and brought out one of our steak knives. As it turned out, the normal table knife was just fine, because the meat was so tender it virtually fell apart.

Now, for your interest, here’s a look at Le Petit Paris’s menu for the week, as it’s currently set out:

A week’s worth of dishes.

And if you’re new to Daglan, here’s a look at the front of the restaurant, in a photo I took this morning while out for a walk:

The restaurant, just behind our village’s war memorial.

We’re pretty fortunate to have such a restaurant in our little village. Since 2005, Le Petit Paris has been listed in the red Michelin guide as a bib gourmand eatery, with two fourchettes (forks).

We have no doubt that we’ll be choosing from the restaurant again. In fact, I was pushing for tomorrow or Saturday. But Jan says it will be early next week, and so I’m pretty confident that’s what we will agree upon.

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

10 Responses to A restaurant comes to us

  1. Karen says:

    The menu offers some lovely choices. You’re lucky to have the restaurant nearby.

  2. Simon Wheatley says:

    We have been long-time clients of Le Petit Paris, and believe that Martine Guilbot now recognises us as one of her regular (if not very frequent) diners. We had to cancel our traditional Easter day visit there, but were there at the beginning of February. Who knows when we will be able to revisit, but it certainly is one of those restaurants we support whenever we are in France. I have been watching with interest the “takeaway” service being run by them, but can’t help feeling that it won’t go on for very much longer. But I particularly wanted to say that I was pleased to see your article and hope that you can revisit the topic in a few weeks. Simon Wheatley (Cazals, Lot; and UK)

    • Loren Chudy says:

      Great to hear from you, and I’m glad you’re a supporter of our LPP. Talk about long-time customers — Jan and I (with four friends) ate lunch there in 1998! Different owners at the time, but still very good. Anyway, let’s hope this scourge ends before too long, and we can all live a bit more freely and openly. Best wishes.

  3. doyle59@sympatico.ca says:

    Wish we had a Petit Paris in Pickering to order from LOL Stay safe and healthy

  4. Marla says:

    What a lovely meal at home. I loved the small town service.

  5. Colin says:

    We’ve had three takeaways from Petit Paris since the lockdown started and no doubt will have another this weekend. Monday’s Chicken Supreme au Monbazillac with gnocchi was very tasty and fortunately I’d got some new season asparagus and smoky bacon to serve with it.

    SIncerely hope they continue the service during these troubled times.

    Stay safe everyone.

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