Des légumes en odeur de sainteté

Restaurant Freya (Biarritz)

© Freya

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After completing his culinary communion under the holy trinity of Bras-Goujon-Troisgros and preaching the gospel of fine cuisine from the US to Australia, Guillaume Chatillon set up his pulpit (with his knives and saucepans in tow) on the Biarritz coast. His diocese? A tiny bistro with Brotherwood tables, Alki chairs, a Pita chandelier and ceramic tableware made by María Urroz, where the local plant life evangelizes the seven-course carte blanche tasting menu. The best passages, served by his partner and associate Margot (who used to work at Aureole in New York) the day we went? An admirable slow-cooked egg smothered in an egg cream seasoned with piment d’Espelette and lemon, with pickled shallots, common ice plant, tonburi (Japanese “land caviar”) and sea samphire oil – which you can scoop up with long, thin pieces of toasted bread topped with grated cured egg, pickled onions and more sea samphire; a massive cauliflower triptych (served roasted in sea urchin and shiso butter, as crisp slivers dressed in vinaigrette, and as a purée whipped with hazelnut oil, shaved almonds and chive oil); and some delicate salsify slow-roasted in licorice and benedict syrup, topped with a white chocolate crumble, salsify chips and a honey / licorice / benedict ice cream. Still hungry? People sing the praises of their Sunday brunch! // Loulou Pic  

FEELING THIRSTY? : A wine list that’s primarily focused on natural wines, put together by the Retour Verre le Future and L’Artnoa wine shops: a Bergerac blanc from Barbouillet (€7 a glass), a Provence rosé from the Domaine Kennel (€32 a bottle), Garde la Pêche, a skin-contact wine from François Ducrot (€36)… 
PRICE: : Set menu €55 (dinner), brunch €28 (Sunday). 

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