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Apr 29, 2012 08:45 PM

Vaux le Vicomte candlelight supper

Loie and I are intrigued by the idea. Does anyone know if the food is good? Thanks!

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  1. I think you can.

    I ate there. It was very good, but it was a wedding, so I can't vouch for their "normal" cuisine.

    1. The place is so spectacular imho it's worth taking a chance.

      1 Reply
      1. re: ChefJune

        Exactly. That's one place where I'd risk eating crap.

      2. It's kinda touristy, the shine wears off shortly into the meal.

        Here's a better (IMO) one star place in the same area:

        BTW, you will need a car, it will be difficult to get a taxi for the long ride from VLV to the Gare. (Melun)

        1. Well, thanks to all who responded. We'll not have a car in Paris. I think during our trip time (July) the chateau runs shuttle buses to the train. So we'll be kind of "stuck at" the chateau once we get there. So lemarais, we're hoping this all works out!

          I've booked us two seats for dinner, hoping for the best, and willing to accept less just because it's such a silly idea. One thing that decided us is that on that Saturday, the fountains will be operating in the late afternoon. If there's been enough rain to fill the chateau reservoir! Yikes! And, a candlelight visit entry ticket can be used from 2:00 pm on to enter the grounds & chateau.

          So we can wander the gardens in the afternoon, have a dinner while the candles are being lighted, and tour the chateau by candlelight after dinner. Hope that works!

          5 Replies
          1. re: BuckyE

            Bucky, please do come back and report...I've been thinking about doing this when we go in the Fall, and would love to hear how it works out and how the food is.

            1. re: BuckyE

              at this particularly moment, it has been a ridiculously wet spring here in the Ile de France -- there should be plenty of rain in the reservoir.

              I know they run a shuttle late on the candlelight evenings, but I know several people who've just had the gift shop call them a taxi -- it's 15-20 minutes from the Gare in Melun - probably less late in the evening.

              1. re: sunshine842

                Thank you, Sunshine, for that tip. We'll keep in mind to avail ourselves of taxi. Now, let's just hope for "Sunshine" on our day!

                1. re: BuckyE

                  I'll cross my fingers for you -- I'd like to have some dry, sunny weather, too!

                  It's really quite interesting to see the inside of the chateau -- illuminated like it was when Fouquet first built it.

              2. re: BuckyE

                You should check to see if they are having fireworks the night of your reservation. If so, I would recommend that you have dinner later, so then you can keep your table for the fireworks show. i went to the Chateau last year, just to do the tour by candlelight and to see the fireworks. My friend and I regretted not having made a dinner reservation ahead of time. Hope you have a wonderful evening there!

              3. Bucky, I am sorry I am posting to late to help you on this matter, but for the future you might want to consider a picnic, which I have done in the past. By the restaurant there are tables set up just for this purpose.
                I took champagne and three courses made by me and I felt almost royal with such a background view! The whole experience is marvelously romantic and I felt lost in the moment walking around with all the candlelight and music.

                7 Replies
                1. re: Cheriekiss

                  Where are the tables for picnicking?

                  Every time we've visited Vaux (which is regularly), it's made **extremely** clear (with abundant signage) that you are not welcome to picnic on the grounds, and that if you want to picnic, you need to trot your little self and your food across the road to the bus parking lot where there's a space for picnics.

                  No doubt it's to try to preserve the income for the restaurants, be it the ones in the gardens, or that overpriced, underperforming mess of a cafeteria in the stables -- but I'd be happy to hear this has changed.

                  from the website:

                  "1/ Are the visitors allowed to have a picnic in the garden?

                  No, picnics are not allowed inside the Estate.

                  But outside the Estate, near the car park, there is a sheltered area dedicated to the picnics.

                  Thus you can get out of the Estate to have your picnic (but you’ve got to tell the counter clerck – Please see the previous paragraph about the Visits / Ticket office (6))"

                  1. re: sunshine842

                    We have picnicked many times in that area indicated on the website. It's right in front of the castle. You walk beyond the parking area, uphill enough so you don't see the cars.
                    The nice picnic tables are always deserted. A great nearby market for picnic food is the Halle in Milly La Forêt.

                    1. re: Parigi

                      Yep- I know where those are, Parigi (and it is nice...) -- just that Cheriekiss was saying you can picnic next to restaurant in the gardens, which is not the case. (Cheriekiss got enviably lucky, but others may not have the same experience)

                      1. re: sunshine842

                        Hi Sunshine!
                        The tables where we sat were near the entrance by their self service/resto L'Ecureuil.
                        There were loads of people there sitting outside. Perhaps they were not technically within the domain. . We just blended in! Try it out the next time.

                        1. re: Cheriekiss

                          Okay -- but it remains that what you did is against their regulations, and they have the right to kick you out without refunding your money.

                          Not recommended, and thanks, but I'll have my picnic up the hill with Parigi where you're supposed to.

                          (mostly, I wouldn't want anyone to think I was actually eating at L'Ecureuil -- you could lose your Chowhound permit for less)

                          1. re: sunshine842

                            "I'll have my picnic up the hill with Parigi where you're supposed to."

                            It's a great charming spot. Maybe we should keep it for ourselves. :-)

                            "(mostly, I wouldn't want anyone to think I was actually eating at L'Ecureuil -- you could lose your Chowhound permit for less)"

                            The chowhound police is esp active.

                            1. re: Parigi

                              Indeed -- we made that mistake years ago - before the picnic area was built -- thinking "how bad can it be"? The answer? Way worse than you could believe.

                              Blindingly expensive, and everything that makes a cafeteria a miserable choice for food - mediocre, industrial pap ladled onto a plate and warmed in the microwave, with a slice of rubbery industrial bread to make it all happy.