14 April 2012

Lunch at the Val de Vienne (2)

We had lunch at the Auberge du Val de Vienne in Sazilly on Wednesday April 11. I posted about the restaurant and the menu yesterday. This is a post about the food we ate.

The two starter course choices were both duck dishes. One was a pâté or terrine made with duck foie gras, and included a small salad of frisée lettuce and cherry tomatoes. The other was a lentil salad topped with thin slices of smoked duck breast proscuitto (salade de lentilles au magret fumé).

The two starter courses, both featuring duck

The main course was either lamb — a serving of navarin d'agneau au curry — or a sauté of chicken au vinaigre — in a light but tart tomato sauce made with vinegar. I had the poulet, and it was excellent. I made a poulet au vinaigre at home a few years ago, and this one was different only in the way it was served. The sauce was strained and then spooned over the two pieces of chicken (breast and thigh pieces) rather than being served with the aromatic vegetables (onions, carrots, mushrooms) still in the sauce.

Poulet au vinaigre

Walt had the lamb and he said it was good but was served in a very concentrated tomato sauce with just a touch of curry. It wasn't what he expected, but he said the meat was tender and tasty. The lamb came with steamed potatoes, and the chicken came with pasta (tagliatelles) that had some peeled and steamed fava beans in it for color and flavor.

Navarin d'agneau au curry

Desserts were either a slice of apple pie with a red wine glaze and a scoop of vanilla ice cream, or a carpaccio of pineapple — thin slices of fresh pineapple. The pie is called a tarte vigneronne, or "winery pie", and is a specialty of the Chinon region. We had tried it in Bourgueil last summer when we were invited for lunch at Amy and Laurent's house.

Tarte vigneronne with a scoop of vanilla ice cream

With lunch we of course had a bottle of Chinon red wine, which is made with 100% Cabernet Franc grapes. Chinon red is a good-quality wine with its own appellation d'origine contrôlée, and it's a wine that can be aged. The bottle we had was a 2009. We had coffee at the end of the meal, before driving over to the other side of the river in search of a couple of good wineries we had heard about...


  1. That food looks wonderful... and the presentation...WOW!
    But life is too short to peel broad beans... unless of course, you are a chef with underlings!

  2. The lentil salad looks fantastic.
    Something I should try to make.
    or find a restaurant that serves it closer to us.

  3. All looks great, but like PG said - and why would you anyway - I love the taste and texture of broadbean skins. Life's too short to turn potatoes as well :-)

  4. The meals for two and the bottle of wine cost 65 euros. That is good value.

  5. I love the presentation of these dishes.

  6. Everybody, thanks for the comments...


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