Lameloise, Chagny, France – 26 August 2012

First week of our summer holiday was spent in a rented town-house in Beaune. It was a personal wish and the family played along, even though we all knew that Beaune is not a typical place for family holidays. The focus is for sure on food and wine. There is a playground, there is parks and ducks…..but its not Kapt. Blaubär Club In Hohe Düne.

Lunch in Beaune…

My dream has always been to spend a little bit more time in this wonderful city, than the odd one or two nighter every now and then. And this time we had indeed booked 5 nights and were lucky to enjoy nice weather. We also got to visit Dijon as well as seeing old friends Pernille and Patrick – as well as new friends – our hosts Alain and his wife Marie-Claire. We thank you both for a wonderful stay in your beautiful house.

Our great hosts….

The next day Alain arranged a tasting tour the the beautiful cellars of Louis Jadot, and it was as good and interesting as we could have ever wished for.

Many great drops were tried…

But as I mentioned the other attraction of Bourgogne, beside the fabulous wines is off course the food. And a lunch at one of my old time favourite restaurants was booked for the second day of our stay. First a trip to the traditional Sunday market in Chagny with all its colours, spices, vegetables, truffles, oils, cloths, hats and you name it….

2 gents trying the olives…

Out two cool boys in front of …

Lameloise

The missus took another round at the market, and I ordered a kir on the terrasse. It came with the usual WONDERFUL olives – the best on this planet – escargot flavoured pop-corn as well as the creme of this time mackerel I think.

Emil eating ALL the pop-corn

Seated in the lounge bar this beauty was up just after another round of the same olives etc. served at the terrasse.

An army of small tastings, some prepared gluten free…

Actually each one of them would be worth a report and photo – but I shall give you just one of them

Mackerel

A fresh cheese wonder was the last greeting from the kitchen…Minor flaw, the vegetarian status of the missus was neglicted…a roll of tender roastbeef on the side.

This salty fluffy bread has to be one of the best of its kind in the world. All you even need.

Emil sure loved it.

Frois Gras de canard, in a robe of potato, with bouillon of truffles

My choice of  a starter, is one of the signature dishes of Eric Pras. Its wonderful 10p

Langoustines, cold and warm

When ordering this dish, the waiter came back and informed the missus that they could try to present it in another way, because the rice-crisp on the warm Langoustine would contain a tiny amunt of flour. But, he assured that it was close to nothing. Astrid took the chance and actually had no problems afterwards. It was probably the best dish of the day. 10p

Childrens menu comes at 25 eur. including their share of all the amuses as well. The boys had a childrens menu which could also have included fois gras, but they opted for these 3 dishes…

Ham and salad

A piece of Saint Pierre with vegetables

Pancakes with ice

Since I had ordered the wonderful crepe-suzette I had requested some extra pancakes for the boys and that request was met without a fuss.
Back to our menu  – the choice of the missus

A large piece of cod

Beautilful simple arrangement, but the size of the Cod, made actually Astrid loose her appetite, even before she started. When ordering the menu all dishes are cut down in size, but we had indeed opted for a la carte this time. But – especially with the missus -sometimes less is more, – she liked it, but it never really rang her bells. 7p

But mine did….Lamb.

You can wake me up for this dish – lamb and Lameloise go hand in hand. Just so tender, the outstanding garlic crumble, the beauty and quality of the vegetables. Bonus point lol. It was better than ever….and prettier. 10p
This dish certainly will stay in my memory for a long time.

Time for sweets and dessert

Round 1

Round two…

Some fluffy good looking things for the missus…

Great looking – but the fluffy fellows were a bit boring in taste. 7p

My “pancakes”…

Now they might look a bit boring, but the taste…classic 10p

Final round…

Conclusion:

Its always good to be in Lameloise. And one thing is for sure. I will be back.

It seemed I had a bit more luck with my choices this time than the missus. But that did not ruin our experience. The boys behaved great – with the help of an Ipad, that helped us over the last hour or so. Three hour plus dining is a whole lot to ask from two active fellas.

Emil and I paid Eric Pras a visit in his kitchen and thanked for the wonderful food. The great and elegant Frederic Lamy paid us a few visits during the dining.

The interaction with the young sommelier very nice and even a blinder served. Thanks for the fun.

The waiter I have enjoyed most over all the years, still remain a prominent figure. He is so kind and service-minded. Whenever Astrid would leave the table he would come over and  entertain and visa-versa. I asked him how it was to be one of the best waiters in the world…he only laughed…no no no…he said…but he is so good, and as I write this I have forgotten his name. but I shalll give you the picture – if you see him say hi from me. Pascal ?

The best waiter in the world? For sure among them.

My rating for this visit: Food 9p (10), service 5p (5), ambience 5p (5), total score for this visit  19p (20)

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I shall leave you with a few shots from the wonderful garden of “our house” and a single last shot from Beaune, my kinda town.

The pool, the water a bit to cold for yours truly…but the boys enjoyed it.

The house with garden and pool

One of my favourite spots in town

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My favourite restaurants 2011 !

And the FWRR awards 2011  goes to….

The below list is most likely also my all-time favourite list. But I will update the list next year and see if there are movements. Most of the restaurants on the list all gave me some memorable lunches or dinners in 2011. Some are still so present in my memory from earlier vistis that I cannot disregard them. So if I had 10 restaurants to re-visit on this planet, this would be my choices today.

1. Schloss Berg, Nennig. Bau continue to improve his cooking to perfection. I like everything about this place, the ambience, the service – the food and wines top notch.

1 - Schloss Berg - The Champion

2. Sölleröd Kro, Copenhagen Now had this pearl been in France it would be a 3 star michelin – but as it is – its in Denmark and thus “only” have 1. Jan Restorff is the best maitre in the world.

2 -Sölleröd Kro - runner up

3. Lameloise, Chagny Frederic Lamy and his team in the service makes sure the perfect food from the kitchen is delivered and presentated to perfection.

3 - Lameloise

4. Le Cinq, Paris. Not visited this year, but I cannot and will not leave it out of my list. Its simply too good. Maybe in 2012. One can always dream. 2 star michelin rating. No food photo – but a photo I never get tired of. Oscar and the missus meeting Bruce Springsteen, just outside Le Cinq.

4. Le Cinq - well actually Bruce Springsteen meets Oscar...

5. Restaurant Babette, Vordingborg – Henrik and Brian in the front and Vivi and her team in the kitchen make sure your dining experience is close to perfect. Being in rural Denmark, 1 hour from Copenhagen i.e. it has no michelin star rating but I am sure it would have at least 1 in France.

5 -Restaurant Babette

A shared 5th place go to

5. Der Butt, Warnemünde. 1 Star michelin rating. Tillman Hahn in the kitchen and all is well in the world. The dinner we had here last summer was outstanding, and even better than the years before.

5 -Der Butt

7. Restaurant Clairefontaine, Luxembourg. When Arnaud Magnier is good, he is really good. He is for sure the best chef in Luxembourg, and he often surprices you with combinations or presentations you would never dream of – but afterwards you will. Take a look at the the Cordon Bleu Revisited below and you will know what I mean. 1 star michelin rating.

7 - Restaurant Clairefontaine

8. Restaurant Rosin, Wulfen. Visiting Frank Rosin in his newly awarded 2 star michelin restaurant was something else than expected. Very down to earth cooking. Beautiful settings, and a wine list among the best I have seen in Germany.

8 - Restaurant Rosin

9. Bouquet Garni, Luxembourg. Thierry Duhr is among the best chefs in Luxembourg, and this adress is probably the most romantic gastronomic restaurant with its stone walls, and open fire in the evening. 1 star michelin rating.

9 - Bouquet Garni

10. Hotel Marbella Club, Marbella. For sure worth a visit. Javier Doncel, or the other waiters will treat you as a king, And you will be stunned by the quality of the food and surroundings. No michelin rating.

10 - Marbella Club Hotel, The Beach Club Restaurant

Enough gastronomy….

I shall finish the list of with some Brasserie style restaurants – but they all managed to impress me – some of them once some of them repeatedly..

1. Bullerei, Hamburg. Tim Mälzer and or his team, produces simple food, but with an outstanding price/quality, super friendly staff and an ambience I simply fell for. A surprice on the list, but the evening I spend there was really something. No michelin rating.

        1 – Bullerei – perfect beef

2. L´annexe, Luxembourg. Award winning in two categories, Jerome with J.P., Sebastien and Christophe in the front and “Miche” and his team in the kitchen provide you with super Brasserie food and you always feel welcome no matter how crowded the place is. And believe me, it can get very crowded. No michelin rating.

                       2 – L´Annexe

3. Ill Riccio, Luxembourg. Tano and Tina holds this restaurant in firm hands. Luca is slowly taking over the responsibilities, and he is everything you could wish for in a host. Its a TINY restaurant with a large menu, good wine list. The kitchen is very flexible and will cook just about anything you ask for. Easily my favourite Italian restaurant. No michelin rating.

3 - Ill Riccio

I am thankful forall the good friends that shared the moments with me along the way in 2011. Rock on….

Lameloise, Chagny, France – 13 November 2010

Lameloise was the first 3 star michelin experience in my life some 15 years ago. So it will always have a special place in my heart. Some years ago it lost its third star only to regain it I think two years after. Locals shook their heads when it happened and still talk about it today. For them Lameloise has been the local pride since the 1920’s (!) and for them there has been no decline in quality over the years. There has been a change in the kitchen however. Jaques Lameloise who took over the family business in 1971 to become the youngest chef in France to receive the 3 stars in 1979 has stepped aside and left Eric Pras and Frederic Lamy in charge of the kitchen, however the Lameloise family remain involved in the running of the Lameloise business.

Last year they opened a Brasserie, “Pierre & Jean” which we were lucky to visit the evening before, but  I shall come back to that in another review.

But today was the day to “pass on the torch”  to the new generation, making it both Oscar and Emils first visit ever visit to a 3 star michelin establishment. Fellow diner good friend from Norway Kjetil and his Sebastian funny enough shared that feeling. Lameloise being Kjetils first 3 star restaurant some years ago, and Sebastians first time today. So there was thats special felling in the air when entering the restaurant. Sebastian told us – where are the stars – he expected them to hang in the windows. But as Kjetil explained him, sometimes when you are that good, you dont need to show the world…the world will know.

After a rainful arrival the day before in Bourgogne, the sun came out a bit and this is what that looks like in Chagny in November

The beautiful old building of Hotel and Restaurant Lameloise

Two different tablets were served with the aperitive

Olives, Marinated Garlic and Salmon Creme

The quality of the green olives outstanding, as good as they get.

Second round of tastings...

Fois Gras, Macrel, Tartare and….I forgot. Great, especially the Macrel on Red Beet….

Last greeting from the kitchen, Fois Gras Creme Brulee and Cold Chestnut Soup

Emil, having tried mostly the bread at this point and the escargot bisquits of the second round of amuses...

Oscar was not really sure what to do with this one...better wait for the pasta...

As for drinking. The boys opted for Limonade. The grown-ups a beautiful Meursault 1. Cru from Jaques Prieur, and a Gevrey Chambertin 2008 from Meo-Camuzet, both stunning and good companions, The fruity red going very well with both the lobster, the sea bass and the beef.

A 3 course menu for small children comes at 25 eur, Breast of Chicken with pasta being the main dish. All Amuses and Greetings were also offered to the kids (nice)

Fois Gras "wrapped" in sliced Potatoes and Cabbage, topped with Truffles. Truly wonderful. Simple ingredients, wonderful result.

Langoustines

A typical classic presentation at Lameloise. Not to much of a fuzz, but clearly a kitchen who knows what to do and how to present a wonderful dish, without “re-inventing the wheel”.

Lobster with Sabajone

Old friend and fellow diner Kjetil claims two things. 1) to have (caught and) eaten hundreds of lobsters….and 2) That this was the most perfect lobster dish he had ever had. He actually had tears in his eyes eating it. Softy.

Sea Bass with Scallops

Scallops and Sea Bass cooked perfect, the Sea Bass being a bit “robust” in the taste – making this the weakest dish of the day.

Beef Charolles with Vegetables

This was my main dish. Great basic cooking and presentation. However, I do prefer old fashioned braised or grilled meat. I am little bit tired of meat being cooked to perfection at 48 degress during x hours. I want a bit more roasted crust, a bit more variation with the given piece of meat. But perfectly (slowly cooked) it was. Call me old fashioned.

What a beauty, the pre-dessert, great great Mango. I do love Mango.

 

Chocolate dessert

As good as the first time. Some things dont ever need to change. I remember having more or less the same presentation 15 years back.

and then came the sweets….

First round...

and the last round.

Conclusion

For me the legend is still there, so is the “romance”. I love the old rooms, the service, the wonderful bread, the classic presentations of good produce, cooked to perfection and ever so beautifully presented. I am happy that this pearl remains alive and kicking – and I am sure the new team will keep Lameloise at this top level. In compare to other of my favourites, for example Le Cinq in Paris, the service is a bit more distant. Its friendly and as good as it gets, and they are very good with the children – but it is not as “family-like” or “young” as I do prefer. But I guess a bit of old fashioned top service is good to experience once in a while, and thus know that some things in the world do not need to change. Add a huge wine list and the rest of Bourgogne just around the corner, you will leave happy and content – and you will be sure to have spend some memorable hours in the hand of people who clearly know what they are doing. I am happy that the next visit is already booked, even if half a year away.

As for the boys including visitor Sebastian from Oslo. Whenever you get a big older and read this -let it be known, that there were 3 proud parents in the room today (Siri, you would have been too). We know that we sometime expect a lot from you…sitting on a chair for 3 hours among other…..but you did so very well today as throughout the whole Bourgogne trip, a trip that was short on childrens activities and heavy on dining and drinking. Thanks for making parenthood all worthwhile. Big boys. We hope someday you will pass the torch on to your offspring. And by the way…thanks to Nintendo…without whom….

http://www.lameloise.fr

My rating for this visit: Food 9p (10), service 5p (5), ambience 5p (5), total score for this visit  19p (20)