Restaurant Chixko (Bidart)

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Hit the brakes! At his smokehouse with views of the highway, Olivier Kartoyan sends cars skidding to a stop for sandwiches made by Bastien Talenton and Julien Rivoiron. Their strengths? Plenty of experience (Chéri Bibi, Epoq), good technique and the crème de la crème of local products: bread from Ona Garia, chicken from Aldabia, vegetables from the Ferme Uhaldea… Devoured under the tuile-covered roof the day we went for lunch: tender beef brisket kefta stuffed into a baguette with smoked tomato sauce, sheep’s milk cheese and basil, followed by a delightful cheesecake topped with fig coulis. Seen in other hands and mouths: a bun stuffed with smoked Manex pork; smoked chicken (half or whole) served plain or spicy; double-fried French fries; or even a slice of smoked corn on the cob with sheep’s milk cheese and chipotle mayo… // Gérard Roubeix 

FEELING THIRSTY? The owner of Retour Verre le Futur (Biarritz) has put together a selection of drinks, featuring an Aude white from Pierre Bories (€5 a glass), unless you’d prefer the house sangria (€3.50 a glass) or a Zazpi beer (€3 for 330 ml). 
PRICE: Sandwiches €10 to €11.50, chicken €15 (half), €26 (whole), sides and desserts €4. 

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