Mortagne-au-Perche, for Piggyinthe middle
I never thought I'd have the opportunity to post about Mortagne and the Perche, and now here are two people with an interest.
I hope Jake Dear will read this as well as piggy, because I want to ask if the Dears travel with a large dog. (If so, we may have met.)
In this area we have two favorite restaurants and a third with potential to become a favorite. (I should say that we’ve experienced only lunch at any of these places, because dinner starts too late for us--peasants, we are.)
Pieds dans l’eau was recommended to us our first day in the Perche and we’ve returned there many times. It’s downhill from Mortagne, at Saint Langis-les-Mortagne. You drive down a narrow road past a thatched cottage and there at the bottom, by a fishing lake, is a small stone building with tables outside. When you enter the simple room you can smell good cooking. The food is solidly satisfying and the menu changes frequently. It's always busy at lunch so a reservation is a good idea. They still don't have a website–probably don’t need it. The Office de Tourisme at Mortagne doesn't list it on their website, probably because the OT charges B&Bs and restaurants for a listing. I think it’s listed in Routard.
Another favorite, with slightly more refined (and richer) cooking, with a pretty dining room, is La croix d’or in Le Pin-la-Garenne. Good cooking, excellent service, and a very warm welcome. It was named a Bib Gourmand last year and well deserves it. Website is: http://lacroixdor.free.fr/. The patronne is always busy and smiling, and once the chef poked his head out of the kitchen and he looked happy too.
We only had one chance to eat at another new-last-year Bib Gourmand, le Relais St Louis in Belleme. We liked it a lot and planned to return but they were closed when we were hungry. http://www.relais-st-louis.com/fr/la-.... We look forward to going back.
We've been kept busy enough with these three restaurants, plus merguez at the l’Aigle market, that we’ve never tried le Tribunal nor Les trois J in Noce. That could change depending on what you report back here.
Another nice food experience is the Tuesday market at l’Aigle, the biggest market in the area. Mortagne’s market is Saturday and is worth a visit.
Mortagne has 5 boulangeries, not bad for a population of about 5000. If you get to Tourouvre, the best boulangerie in the area is there, La baguette d’or.
Please forgive me for running on. I could spend our entire 3 week trips to France never leaving the Perche. When we arrive we go right from the airport to lunch at La croix d’Or. I think about the Perche every day and am ready to go back at the drop of a hat. Thanks for giving me the opportunity to wallow in good memories.
Loved your wallow! I will keep my eyes open for the aforementioned restaurants en route, but unfortunately (or, I hope, fortunately!) we are only staying and eating one night at Le Tribunal, on our way down to Chinon (two nights at Domaine de Beausejour) and then the Dordogne this trip. But we will certainly try your recommendations another time. At least we will be able to explore Mortagne's 5 boulangeries and a charcuterie/traiteur or two for the next day's picnic!
Salut Crumbs, Thanks for the references -- we will add them to our Perche list. You did not meet us -- but we would have liked to! We don't travel with a big (or any) dog, but "ma petite epouse" sometimes wishes she could bring our similarly diminutive cat Mollie on our escapades en la belle France. -- Jake