Auberge de Chassignolles
The British flag flies over this monumental Auberge, a miraculous thing in such a sleepy village with its stone buildings and 12th-century church. After hosting a slew of international chefs, (Mike Hazlewood from New Zealand, Thomas Haugstvedt from Norway and Matthew Robertson from the US), the phlegmatic boss Peter Taylor has entrusted the kitchen this year to the Australian chef Sebastian Myers. The night we went, he presented us with a chlorophyll-rich nettle soup with some other leaves and flowers from the area, softened by a poached egg; an ultra-moussey leek and potato soup with fromage frais, vegetal lovage notes and crisp peas; slow-roasted country lamb with chard leaves and barley, moistened by a rich jus; and an orange frangipane tart with very bitter notes balanced out by a rich double cream. And in keeping with the house’s locavore philosophy: trout from Sauxillanges, beef from the Aubrac, lentils from Puy or Saint-Flour all feature on the various menus… // G.D.
FEELING THIRSTY? Natural wines: a dry Zotzenberg Riesling from Rietsch (€7 a glass); Abreuver ses Sillons, an unexpected Gamay from Daniel Sage (€7); a delightful Loire les Vignes from Babass (€37 a bottle); Le Temps des Cerises, a Languedoc from Axel Prüfer (€38); La Fleur au Fusil, a Roussillon from Alain Castex (€42)…
PRICE: Snacks at lunch €4.50 to €8.50, menu €30 (dinner). Double rooms starting at €55 (with no private bathrooms) and €80 (with private bathrooms).