La Ferme de la Ruchotte
Ever since Fred Ménager (Gagnaire’s former poultry roaster) set up shop in the Ouche Valley with his heritage poultry, Solognot sheep and noir de Bigorre pigs, his rustic inn (old armchairs, exposed stone walls and wooden rafters) has been booked solid. At precisely 12:30pm, there are always 20 guests seated to attention waiting to execute the tattooed chef’s orders. The day we went, those orders consisted of engulfing all of the following divine preparations: a deceivingly authentic pâté en croûte with vegetables instead of meat; an œuf parfait in a garden herb soup; lovely roasted guinea fowl whose meat effortlessly falls off the bone; spring vegetables cooked in a Dutch oven; before a selection of cheese – each of which was better than the last (fresh goat cheese from La Ferme La Guyotte in Frontenard, a cow-sheep’s milk tomme from the Fromagerie de Saunière in La Bussière-sur-Ouche), or a strawberry and elderflower soup with yogurt ice cream. Watch out – the meal takes a minimum of three hours!
FEELING THIRSTY? There are more of less affordable bottles of wine: a Brouilly from Alex Foillard (€40), a moving macerated white from the Domaine Prieuré Roch (€60), a Gevrey-Chambertin premier cru from the Domaine Dujac (€270)… or a glass of Aloxe-Corton from Les Boutières at €12.
PRICE: Tasting menu €50.