La Voile Blanche - Metz
I was in Metz on the weekend they opened the Pompidou to take advantage of the free entry, which entailed waiting in line for almost 3 hours.. I tried to make reservation at La Voile Blanche for that saturday night but they were full. It is run by a Lorraine chef, Jean Marie Visilit, who has a successful auberge a few miles east of Metz, called La Grange de Conde, which I have never tried.
With that idea scuttled, I searched instead for simple rustic foods and settled on L'Evidence, which was not far from our hotel Metropole. This is an unpretentious popular french basque restaurant with a limited menu and petits prix. I can reccomend their encornet farci(stuffed calamari), redolent with hearty flavors of basque ham and piment de espelette. They are noted also for their huge cote de boeuf and fois gras maison.
The Gault Millau mentions Le Magasin aux Vivres,Au Pampre d'Or,La Dinanderie, Thierry Saveurs et Cuisine and Restaurant Maire for more upscale dining.
I think Metz is a beautiful and interesting city situated on the Moselle and Seille rivers with its islets and gorgeous cathedral. The immense cathedral St. Etienne has a beautiful Black Madonna for those devoted pilgrims such as myself. An old roman capital , it is full of historical and ancient medieval quartiers worth visiting in addition to the new Pompidou,which a part from the wonderful pieces of art, offers splendid views of the city.
A few miles noth of Metz is Amneville les Thermes, where I go to the Villa Pompei for their great indoor and outdoor thermal baths that I highly recommend!
The region of Lorraine has some surprising gems to discover. I love the pate Loraine, Munster fermiers, mirabelle specialities and bergamot chocolates in addition to some lovely Moselle wines. The covered market next to the cathedral has wonderful food offerings and a great little soup place run by a real character. Metz in my eyes is an underrated jewel, which the Pompidou will help put the city more on the tourist map.