Les Caves Madeleine
There’s no musty wine cellar smell here! Just mouthwatering aromas coming from the kitchen of this long wooden den, where the chef and owner Martial Blanchon has taken the art of bistro cuisine to the next level. An example from the three-course lunch menu: an island of whipped cream floating proudly atop a Maranges-white asparagus velouté, with bacon crispies (from the Maison Romane) for a Crusoe-inspired appetizer; excellent shredded suckling pig in a fig leaf jus, with mashed potatoes to give it a parmentier feel; then volcano-style rice pudding, which erupts over dark chocolate sorbet in an ocean of orange coulis…. Otherwise, served à la carte, you’ll find dishes like the casa’s signature chuck steak, poached in a translucent broth with escabèche; free-range veal belly cooked in its jus, etc. And to drink, take a look through their organic-natural selection: Valette, Derain, Durieux and Souhaut are all there, along with La Piécette, a Bourgogne-Vézelay from the Domaine de la Cadette for €6 a glass, or a Mâcon-Villages from Julien Guillot for €28 a bottle. Menu €23 (lunch), à la carte €39-50. // D.N.