Saturday, 26 April 2014

2 : Eating out in Saint-Gengoux

Saint-Gengoux-le-National is located approx. 10 km north of Cormatin along the Voie Verte, reason why many cyclists sooner or later end up there to find something to eat. Apart from a handful of bakers, always good for a cake, a quiche or even a (French) sandwich, Saint-Gengoux also has some restaurants.

Not really in town, but somewhere halfway Cormatin and Saint-Gengoux on the D981 is restaurant La Place in the hamlet with the same name. La Place is a dépendence of Les Blés d’Or in Cormatin. The food is good and reasonably priced. The restaurant often gets bus loads of tourists, because the kitchen is capable of catering for big groups.

Hôtel de la Gare
On the edge of town, near the old station on the Voie Verte one finds hôtel-restaurant de la Gare.
Early 2012 some friends invited us over for a lunch there. Although we had made a reservation for six, there was no table laid for us. However, one of the laid tables (linen napkins, proper wine glasses) was re-laid, this time with paper napkins and the typical glasses normally used wit the menu du jour. The restaurant has a bar and a dining room. The bar is meant for menu du jour (€ 12.50) or plat du jour only; the dining room is restricted to those ordering à la carte only. How they go about companies where some want a menu du jour and some want to order à la carte is beyond me. The reception was rather chaotic, and I thought the prices were a bit on the steep side. The available menus were € 20.00 (simple menu, starter, main dish and cheese), € 28.50 (starter, fish or meat dish and cheese) and € 34.00 (starter, fish and meat dish and cheese). One of the available starters consisted of an excellent buffet à volonté of various starters. The other dishes we ordered were nicely laid out and of very good quality.
La Jouvence
My verdict: if I want to spend a bit more money than usual for a meal, I know where to find better places with the same price around La Tuilerie de Chazelle. And if I want a simple meal in a place with a nice ambiance, Saint-Gengoux has more than one other place to offer than just Hôtel de la Gare. In a word: for the time being I will not store Hôtel de la Gare under “My favourites”.

In the centre, on the Avenue de la Promenade one finds restaurant La Jouvence, which is a “normal” French restaurant. It serves good food at very reasonable prices. A formula or menu du jour costs (order of magnitude) € 13.

For those who want something simple there is pizzeria Pili-Pili. It is located in the Grande Rue, a side street of the Avenue de la Promenade, and not really worth this flattering name. Although not exactly a place for a cosy candlelight dinner, the pizzas they serve are of good quality and the service is friendly and adequate. It is also a take-away.

Further Café du Marché near the lavoir is said to serve sandwiches.

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