L'Esprit du Causse
Aveyron pork from Serge Chabert (in Mur-de-Barrez), poultry from Les Fins Gourmets (in Limogne), organic vegetables from Claude Murat (in Arcambal)… The name doesn’t lie: L’Esprit du Causse (“the spirit of the Causse”) and Romain Bouëtard (ex-Château de Mercuès) really cultivate a sense of locavorism. Just take a glance at the unbeatable lunch menu (€14.50 during the week), with a glass of Malbec and coffee included! The day we went: superb chicken ballotine stuffed with mascarpone and marjoram, in a mustard sauce; explosively flavorful tandoori pork ribs cooked in duck fat, with gratin dauphinois potatoes; and an impressive café gourmande – walnut cake, chocolate fondant, pistachio cake with sweet potato mousse, strawberries with whipped cream and matcha ice cream! At night, the lively house spirit once again takes over the room (wooden rafters, stone walls, hardwood floors), as the chef from the Lot department sends out impressive menus (€29 and €34) featuring, for example, pan-seared foie gras, cuts of veal, chocolate bavarois with caramelized peanuts… And to drink, there’s a primarily natural wine list: Clin d’OEil, a white Côtes-du-Lot from the Château Nozières (€4 a glass), K-or, a red Côtes-du-Lot from the Clos Troteligotte (€28 a bottle), etc. Set menus €12.50 to €14.50 (lunch except for national holidays), menus €29-34 (dinner and Sunday lunch), à la carte €29, kids €13. Guest rooms at €90 and €120 a night, from October 1st to April 30th. // P.L.