Thursday, July 14, 2016

French cooking

Les Contamines-Montjoie, Haute-Savoie, July 6, 2016— 
 I REMEMBERED THIS TOWN as having provided the worst meal of my month on the GR5 back in 2008, and was determined to do better this time. We dined in 
a restaurant recommended to us by the proprietor of a cheese-and-sausage shop, a Norman who seemed to know his stuff.

We'd already noticed the restaurant: Curt said we should eat there, as restaurants with dogs in their names were generally superior to their neighbors. (I wondered if I'd ever before noticed a restaurant named for a dog: but then, I'm not a dog person.)

My first course (entrée) was simple enough to choose: tarte a la tomate confite et son pesto de roquette, a grilled stewed tomato on a thin pastry shell, dotted with pesto, served with a roquette salad.

Next (plat principal), paillard de veau au grill, sauce au foin. Who could resist grilled veal scallops with hay sauce? The veal was nicely cooked, perhaps a tiny bit dry, and its thin, focussed, flavorful jus really did taste a bit of the scent of dried hay. I suppose they infuse a bit of hay in the sauce, then strain it out. It gave the veal a gout de terroir, a taste of the country we''ve been walking through; and it was resourceful and imaginative and delicious; and I liked it.

Côtes du Roussillon, Le Grill de Mas Cristine, 2015
Husky, Les Contamines-Montjoie, Haute-Savoie

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