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Fontevraud le Restaurant

Fontevraud le Restaurant

Fontevraud l'Abbeye

While flipping through my Food & Wine magazine in Colorado, I came across an article entitled The Ten Best New Restaurants in France. Much to my delight, one of the restaurants happened to be situated directly on our planned cycling route. Too good to be true, I knew it was meant to be. I decided to splurge and booked a table for two at Fontevraud le Restaurant, in the Abbaye Royale de Fontevraud not far from Saumur.

Located in the cloister, and one time prison, of Europe’s largest abbey, young chef, Thibaut Ruggeri, (only 34-years-old), and winner of the 2013 Bocuse d’Or (an international gastronomic competition), serves up extremely stunning haute cuisine in an intimate and peaceful setting. The tables surround a courtyard filled with fresh and colorful herbs where the very kind and attentive wait staff trim and pick fresh ingredients for each course.

Fontevraud-Le-Restaurant

No doubt about it, Chef Ruggeri is an artist. Visually his plates are exquisite. I’m not sure I’ve ever seen such beautiful and creative plating. Our dinner was like an edible trip to a fine modern art museum. In addition to the freshly picked herbs, the chef uses local ingredients, like honey from the abbey’s bees and mushrooms grown in the limestone caves surrounding the abbey. While not every plate was a homerun on the palate and flavor sometime took a back seat to art, it was an unforgettable evening.

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Fontevraud le Restaurant

Fontevraud le Restaurant

Fontevraud le Restaurant

Fontevraud le Restaurant

Fontevraud le Restaurant

Fontevraud le Restaurant

Fontevraud le Restaurant

Fontevraud le Restaurant

Fontevraud le Restaurant

Fontevraud le Restaurant

Fontevraud le Restaurant

MENU ABEILLES \ 20€

Layers of fresh goat cheese

Chicken with mashed potatoes and lemon

Chocolate and nuts

MENU MENU \ 58€

Including wines in keeping with the meal \83€

A springtime revolution

Pollock, and pots herbs

Chicken from Racan, Swiss chard end goat’s cheese

Goat cheese and basil

A symphony of lemon and black olives

GRAND MENU \ 95€

Including wines in keeping with the meal \ 130€

The Paris mushroom at Fontevraud

Fario trout marinated, pinewood

Poached monkfish with shellfish and striped with squid and squid ink with a braised fennel bulb and a dill and red wine sauce.

A pigeon fillet with almonds and covered with a cognac marzipan, honeyed carrots and giblets with 4 spices.

Cheeses from the length and breadth of the Loire

A little sweetness without butter or cream

A symphony of lemon and black olives

19 Comments Post a comment
  1. Melinda Lusmore #

    What a perfect setting for a restaurant! Did you have a chance to wander around the abbey?

    June 29, 2015
    • Yes. Just about 15 minutes. I will definitely put it on my list as an overnight stop the next time we travel this way. Gorgeous little towns all around, good wine tasting, and the Abbey is now also a hotel. I have no idea what it costs, but would be an excellent splurge to be able to be on those grounds at all times of the day and night. It’s been spectacularly renovated.

      June 29, 2015
      • Melinda Lusmore #

        Sounds stunning! I visited in 2006 and loved it then. It sounds quite different now! (As long as the tombs of Richard and Eleanor are still there!)

        There is also a language school in the village – Parfum de France – which a friend of mine recommends but I suspect your French doesn’t need any brushing up on!

        June 29, 2015
      • Ooh! What an idyllic spot for a language school. I’m definitely going to look into that. My French is pas bien. That would be the perfect spot to learn I think.

        June 29, 2015
  2. ROL #

    whaou !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! Marie-Françoise

    June 29, 2015
  3. rebbit7 #

    Oh man! This post definitely made my mouth water! I miss French food; perhaps I will check out that restaurant when I return to France!

    June 29, 2015
  4. Wow!
    And so reasonable for that standard of food and such an exquisite setting
    I think we need to fit in a trip back that way……………

    June 29, 2015
    • It’s definitely an “event”. Well worth the money for a 4-hour gourmet meal. He’s quite the talented chef. One to watch, me thinks.

      June 29, 2015
  5. Reblogged this on PostDot.

    June 29, 2015
  6. Do you ever feel that so called ‘top restaurants’ become more about the chef than the food? I sometimes think that they try to outdo each other in showing off and I’d rather have good ingredients well cooked than anything ‘deconstructed’ or featuring foam!

    June 30, 2015
    • Yes. I agree. Visually it was a magnificent show. And it really was a show, but I’d say flavor wise about half of them were a miss. Meaning they were just ok. In the end it was about the plating and a feast for the eyes. Still it was a great evening.

      June 30, 2015
  7. Wow! What an experience. It looks well worth it (types the hungry girl :o). Thanks for sharing these beautiful creations!

    July 1, 2015
  8. What amazing looking food! Lovely setting for the restaurant too🙂

    August 6, 2015
    • It was a dream setting. Gosh I miss France…about to start a new adventure here in Colorado: French culinary school starts next Monday.

      August 11, 2015
      • Sounds wonderful – hope you will blog about your culinary adventures at the cooking school!🙂

        August 11, 2015

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