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Sep 6, 2009 03:23 AM

One Week in and around Languedoc

We will be driving around the Languedoc region the last week of October tracking down Romanesque churches, country inns and good restaurants. We land and leave from Montpellier and would like to spend at least one day on the Med. Any suggestions would be appreciated

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  1. We have spent quite a bit of the time over the last several years exploring the area north and northwest of Montpellier during visits to relatives who live in Montpellier including the Pic St. Loup wine region. A wonderful country inn and restaurant I would heartily recommend is the L'Auberge de Saugras in Argelliers, about 17 kms northwest of Montpellier

    A wonderful restaurant is located in St. Martin de Londres called Les Muscardins

    There are many wonderful wineries in this beautiful region as well. Pic Saint-Loup takes its strange name ("Peak Saint Wolf") from a craggy, chalky limestone mountain that juts up like an eerie prehistoric wolf's fang, rising more than 1,500 feet above the surrounding rolling fields and vineyards. Some of my favorite wineries in the region include Domaine de l'Hortus, Mas Bruguiere, Chateau de Lascaux, and Chateau La Roque.

    1 Reply
    1. re: Pammel

      Thank you, especially for the wine recommendations.

    2. Heartily second the recommendation for L'Auberge de Saugras, and add Le Mimosa in Saint Guiraud and its tiny hotel in neighboring St. Saternin. Do go for the wine pairing. David Pugh makes it a tutorial of the secret wonderful wines of the area.

      1. Don't forget that this area is famous for its Nougat! Really delicious.

        1. We just got back and had a wonderful time. Auberge de Saugras was an excellent recommendation. I would like to also recommend Salente, a gite near Gignac (new one star Michelin chef in town) . Lovely family and nice rooms on a working winery. The best meal of the trip was in Cahor at Richard Marco. Thanks for everyone's suggestions; we will go back

          10 Replies
          1. re: POY

            When you visit the lovely city of Sète, get a plate of oysters and a glass of white wine in the market. Great taste, great freshness, low cost, great fun. Much better than eating in the seafront restaurants for tourists.
            Again in Sète, on quai de la Résistance, I chanced upon a nondescript storefront with a long queue outside. Turned out it wa a "no name" tielle joint. Had the best tielle ever there.

            1. re: POY

              Thank you, thank you for sharing the lovely Domaine de Salente. What a find!

              1. re: mangeur

                It was the restaurant in Gignac who recommended Salente. Along with their lovely place and warm welcoming, the wine they produce is good and affordable. If it had been possilbe to take a case on the plane, we would have.

                1. re: POY

                  Stop teasing us. :) Is DeLauzun your Gignac restaurant find? And would you like to add any description of your good evening there?

                  1. re: mangeur

                    Yes, and it was excellent. Friendly service and nice local wines. We had the Menu Surprise with the ususal amuse bouche and chocolate with espresso. I wish I had taken notes but I remeber the pigeon and tempura shrimp in particular. We dine in Belgium and Paris and lived near Alsace for years so we found the food in this region quite different. Foie gras, for example, is served with a sweet wine and not a gewurztraminer. To the francophiles, I know I am stating the obvious but for us, dining in this region was a revelantion. At Richard Marco, I had the best foie gras dish ever; a puff pastry base, layered with a slice of foie gra terrine and cooked apples topped with a piece of foie gras. Not the foie gras dishes I ate in Alsace. We are planning to go back in the spring. France is an amazing country.

                    1. re: POY

                      All over the sud-ouest, foie gras is often accompanied by sweet Monbazillac.
                      I also love the cusine around L'Etang de Thau. The oyster has a very distinct taste, unlike the Atlantic coast ones. And I love tielles.
                      Off topic: Mangeur, I had always thought you were a gentleman because, well, "mangeuR". However, a name like mangeuse does remind one too much of the phrase "mangeuse d'hommes", which immediately brings to mind a voluptuous cousin from a provincial city, right out of a Claude Chabrol movie…

                      1. re: Parigi

                        Parigi, what are "tielles?" I have never heard of them, and have been visiting France for years.... and have taught French cooking for a long time...

                        1. re: ChefJune

                          Google tielle =

                          "The Tielle is a round pastry filled with a mixture of octopus and tomato...."

                          1. re: BN1

                            Oooooo, ChefJune, I too had thought you have tasted everything !
                            Tielle is a specialty of Sete, itself a lovely town on the Mediterranean which I recommend to everyone. The best tielle is at Paradisio on quai de la Résistance. -- I don't even think it has a name outside; just look for a mystery queue on the quai. That's how I discovered it: I saw a long queue outside a nondescript dumb pizza takeout kind of place. Without knowing what it was, I queued up too, and ordered what all the locals were ordering.
                            The tielle there had a crispy pastry outside, like a good pizza crust, and rich runny chowdery squid chunks inside.

                            1. re: BN1

                              I googled it and got a picture but no description!

                              Merci Bien!