Restaurant L'Argence (Sainte-Geneviève-sur-Argence)

© L'Argence

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An old building that was wasting away in the foothills of the Aubrac region has been brought back to life by bartender Candine Knyf (Mama Shelter and Candelaria in Paris) and chef Jonathan Rigoulet (Pic, Guérard, Roellinger and most importantly, Bras). The result? A modernist, classy hotel-restaurant that combines wood and glass decor. The night we went, we had all of the following: some incredible organic zucchini from Condom-d’Aubrac grilled on the plancha and served cold, dotted with elderberry oil and balsamic vinegar, tickled by a cow’s milk caillé cheese with sesame seeds and pesto, plus grilled capers and croutons; a very fresh organic trout steak from Nicolas Mairiniac of Les Monts d’Aubrac, caressed by a delicate beurre blanc sauce, with grilled beets and a sweet potato purée; before a somewhat less impressive finish, a Paris-Brest cream imprisoned within a cinnamon shortbread crust, with strawberry ice cream and dotted with chocolate. // Gérard Roubeix  

FEELING THIRSTY? A few low-intervention wines: Champêtre, a Mauzac white from Laurent Cazottes (€5 a glass), a Loire Urfé white from Gilles Bonnefoy (€40 a bottle), Entraygues-le-fel in both white and red from the Domaine Mousset (€30)… 
PRICE: Set menus €15 (weekday lunch), kids’ menu €10, à la carte €29-39, aligot €3-6. 

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