July 2016 France “Impressionism and Gourmet Travel” Chapter 2-1: La Maison d'à Côté par Christophe Hay, a Michelin 1-star auberge in the Loire region

July 2016 France Impressionism and the journey of gourmet
July 2016 France Impressionism and the journey of gourmet

Visit Date: July 18, 2016

Now this time, the second chapter begins. The second chapter will be about gourmet food; I have enjoyed delicious French food at Michelin one or two star restaurants/auberges for five consecutive days from July 18, 2016.

The first Michelin star restaurant was in the Loire.

今回ご紹介するのは、ロワール地方にあるオーベルジュ[highlight]「La Maison d'à Côté par Christophe Hay」[/highlight]

オーベルジュのサイト: Les restaurants de Christophe Hay

This auberge is located in the Loire Valley, a World Heritage Site, in a small town not far from the Loire River. It is very close to the Château de Chambord, which is a particularly popular tourist destination.

We came from the direction of Blois (west side), but it took us about 30 minutes because the road was crowded. I think it takes about 10 minutes to get there if the road is free.

I was able to book this auberge from Booking.com. However, from Booking.com, it seemed that only accommodation could be booked. You can also make a reservation directly from the website of their auberge.

Booking.comからの予約はこちら:La Maison d'à Côté

We were able to park for free at the plaza in front of the hotel. Since it was around 6:30 in the evening when we arrived, the car park was almost full, and somehow we managed to get a couple of cars open. It might have been better to arrive a little earlier.

So I didn’t book the restaurant this time, but I was able to use the restaurant without any problem. When you check in, you will be asked if you want to use the restaurant. The lady who answered us could speak some English, but she was not as fluent as I was (though I’m sure she was still better than I was), so we had a chat with her, sometimes with my poor French, and made a reservation for 7:30 p.m. because we were very hungry.

If you are worried, it is better to make a reservation directly without going through a portal site.

The room

After checking in, we were shown to our room to relax a little. But it’s about 30 minutes until dinner, so we can’t rest that long. I guess it’s just to rest my legs. I was just driving all the time. The room is not so wide, but it was very elegant and relaxing space. You can say that the room is worth the price.

There is a nice terrace in front of the room. But unfortunately we didn’t have a chance to use it.

Restaurant is next to the hotel

The restaurant was located next to the hotel. It used to be on the ground floor of the same building as the hotel, but it must have become popular, so they built a new building next to the hotel for the restaurant to expand.

Christophe, the main chef.

The chef who runs the restaurant at this wonderful auberge is Christophe Hay. I will explain what he is like based on the following website. I am sorry if my understanding is not correct. The following photo is from a book in my hotel room. You can see a little bit of Christophe’s photo in the lower left.

Christophe is a native of Vendôme in the Loire region and was inspired to pursue this career after training as a high school student with Eric Reithler, the chef who runs a one-star restaurant in Blois, Loire. Then, in 2002, Eric introduced him to Paul Bocuse and he worked for 5 years as a chef at Le Bistrot de Paris, a restaurant in Orlando, USA supervised by Bocuse. After returning to France, he became the chef at l’Hôtel de Sers in Paris, and in 2008, he joined the Bessé Signature group, which produces progressive hotels and resorts mainly in Paris.

生まれ故郷のロワールのこの地で腕を振る舞うようになったのはいつからかは、La Maison d'à Côtéには具体的な記述がありませんでしたが、別のサイト情報(ニュース)を見る限りでは、どうやら2014年5月のようですね。

Christophe is a young chef who has received high praise in many gourmet guides.

ミシュラン一つ星の獲得だけでなく、Gault&Millauの2017年の6名のGrands de demain(直訳:明日の偉人、意訳すると未来の偉大なる料理人)の候補としても上がっているようです。詳しくはわかりませんが、すごく才能と実力のあるシェフなわけです。

The shop was also decorated with a sign (or is it a sign?) that says it has been evaluated by various guides. was decorated. There are quite a lot of them, aren’t there?

A menu with a touch of orientalism and a lot of local ingredients from the Loire region

We started with a glass of champagne to celebrate the fact that our gourmet journey had finally begun in earnest. Then we thought about what to order while drinking the champagne.

オーダーですが、次のメニューリストの「1er ACTE(Premier ACTE)」が前菜(Entrée)に対応、「2em ACTE(Deuxième ACTE)」がメイン(Plat)に対応しているようですが、我々は右のページの上にある[highlight]季節のメニュー(Nos menus, Au fil de la saison)[/highlight]をチョイスしました。

There were two amuse-bouches. To be honest, I don’t remember what they tasted like, but I do remember that they were very tasty and I was very excited for the rest of the dishes.

You have to write it down on the spot.

さてまずは前菜。僕は[highlight]「ミューレのマリネ(Mulet de Loire)」[/highlight]をオーダー。近くを流れるロワール川で採れた川魚。フランスではポピュラーな魚のようです。上品な酢でマリネされていて、そしてほのかにハーブの香り(フェンネル主体だがおそらくそれだけではない感じ、花の香りもした気がしました)がする絶品でした。いろいろな味や香りがしますがすべてがデリケートな寄与しかしていない感じで、それらのバランスが絶妙だったと思います。

続いてメイン。僕が注文したのは[highlight]「天然ホロホロ鳥のグリル(Pintade perle noire) 」[/highlight]でした。これもやはりほのかなハーブの味わいとタンパクで脂身は少ないながらもデリケートで上品な味わいがするお肉が美味しかったです。トッピングのお野菜、きのこも美味しかったです。

The last one is fromage instead of dessert. From hard type to white mold type. Of course, there were some local products, but I’m sorry, I forgot which ones were from who exactly.

One of the characteristics is the use of gentle and pleasant herbs in every dish. The taste was somewhat oriental, but it was not strong or spicy like the so-called ethnic taste. It is an amazing technique.

By the way, the bread is of course made in house at the restaurant, and the butter is also made in house. This butter was so delicious! I’ve never had butter this good before.

The wine is from the Loire.

当然ワインも頼みましたよ。今回はこちらの[highlight]「シュヴルニー産(Cheverny)」[/highlight]のものを。赤ワインでした。この日の午後に訪れてきたばかり。

In addition, the wine list is here. It’s not much compared to the restaurant in Dijon, Burgundy which we will visit later, but I thought it was a well-selected list.

Like the menu list for the meal, the design and font of this list itself is somewhat modern.

However, if you look at this picture carefully, you will see that the wine we ordered is not on it. That’s because I ordered a different wine (I forgot what I ordered) at first, but they seemed to be out of it and recommended this wine instead. If you look at the wine list carefully, you can see that there is a wine called “cour-cheverny”. However, it seems that this wine and cheverny are different AOC. Furthermore, the vintage is 2014, so it is different.

The cepage is Gamay, Pinot Noir, Sauvignon Blanc, and the taste is medium and fresh like Loire. The taste was medium and fresh like Loire. If you like full-bodied wines like Bordeaux or Rhone, this wine may not be enough for you, but I thought it was just right to have it cool and refreshing.

After dinner, Christophe, the chef, came to our table and talked with us. Unfortunately, I couldn’t have a satisfactory conversation with him in my poor French, so I felt sorry and frustrated that I couldn’t express my feelings to him. I need to study French more.

A Japanese person was trained here.

In addition, a young Japanese man was training at this restaurant, so he explained the dishes to us in Japanese. It was very helpful. But he didn’t seem to have much experience in serving customers, so he seemed a little nervous. But he was very polite and nice.

He used to train at a restaurant in Belgium, but when he came to France on a trip, he came to know about this restaurant and was so impressed by Chef Christophe’s cooking and his attitude that he wanted to train at this restaurant. Christophe is also very interested in inspiration from the East, including Japan.

In addition, I would like to give you my contact information after dinner, but I haven’t heard from him yet. It’s been quite a while since I’ve updated my blog here as well, but if you read this blog, please contact me lol. I know you’re busy with your training, but I’m looking forward to hearing from you.

The breakfast was great too!

After a wonderful dinner we went to bed. The next morning we had breakfast again at this hotel. The space for breakfast was

The butter was not homemade, but it was very tasty.

But the bread, ham, and cheese were all delicious! It’s a very French breakfast, and since I eat well at night, it’s enough for me.

ここはクリストフさんがいる限りもう一度訪れたいオーベルジュです。この日から本格化したグルメ編、幸先の良いスタートを切ることができました。しかし、まだまだこんな旅が1週間続くことになります。(続く)

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