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With its grassy terrace and psychedelic-caveman wine cellar, the guinguette run by Sophie Rabeyrain-Haudebourg (L’Herbe Rouge in Valaire) and Julien Vercellotti (De Saison in Paris) is heating things up along the banks of the Loire River. What should you do upon arrival? Park your car on the side of the road, fill up your trunk with carefully sourced provisions (rillettes from Le Père Louis, Comté from Marcel Petite, smoked catfish from local fishermen) from the cave à manger carved into the cliffside (a former wine and spirits storehouse), grab a platter, cross the main road and look for an empty seat at one of the dozen or so picnic tables along the river. The rest comes with sunsets that are better than any Instagram filter, jazz or electro concerts, kids running around, fairy lights, and weekends with the beautiful dishes made by chef Lola Cornaert: an XXL croque monsieur made with excellent ham from the Bobault delicatessen; suckling pig or chicken roasted on the spit and served with sauce and herbed new potatoes; grilled Montlouis sausage…. // Thomas Jossin 

FEELING THIRSTY? : A selection of low-intervention bottles at reasonable prices, which you can pop open in house (or take to go): P’tit Pinoir, a Cheverny red from Christian Venier (€20 a bottle) or a Saumur blanc from Antoine Sanzay (€14), Le Tendre from the Domaine Montgilet (€5 a glass), or an excellent IPA from their neighboring Brewing Cartel (€3.50 for a half-pint). 
PRICE: : Plates €6-20, mains €12 to €14.50, desserts €5.50. 

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