What are you having?
Everytime someone asks me, a french person, what is the typical french dish I find myself incapable of answering.
Most people think “UK” and picture fish and chips or maybe a scone… you talk about “Italy” and pizza or tiramisu come to mind.
I think “France” and it seems like each region has it’s very own traditional dish and its very own (and very rich) culinary culture.
It will take you longer than our minimal week stay to explore everything that Normandie has to offer in terms of taste and flavour.
From the apple juice and cider to the cheeses, crepes, meat and sea food, all the way to the very traditional “trou normand”. (litteraly translated: Norman hole, a little glass of brandy to help with digestion between dishes during a long diner ).
Of course at the Chateau each resident is free to buy and cook their own food so you could probably go days without getting out of your comfort zone. But why miss out on such an experience?
When you have the opportunity we would highly recommend starting easy and trying french pastries: most probably the best pain au chocolat (not chocolate croissant, not chocolatine) and croissant you will ever have (no we are not biased), it is just that we are marely a few kilometers away from Isigny sur mere where the best butter is made. If you spot them in the window or at the counter, give a try to the Chouquettes, little puff pastries with sugar on top.
Every Sunday morning at the chateau, we make Crepes, not pancakes, Crepes, very different. You can choose to add savoury and/or sweet topings to your crepes. The most traditional combinations would be: the complete (egg, ham and cheese)
and the crepe Suzette (caramelised sugar and butter with orange zest and Grand Marnier liqueur).
Normandie is famous for its apples. There are about 800 types of apples being grown in the region with which is made delicious juice, cider, Pommeau and calvados alcool.
The cheese section could have it’s own article but we will stay with the most famous ones such as the Livarot or the Pont L’eveque.
If you are vegan this article might scare you off a bit. Not to worry. There are options for you too. First of all, the supermarket only minutes drive away offer a wide range of vegan options.
We also have a delicious vegan restaurant run by two friends of the castle called La cle du bonheur (The key to happiness, if that is not a perfect name!) with delicious vegan lunches and dinners (that you can also take away on Friday nights).
If you are more of a burger person, our favorite so far in the area is the one served at L’Intemporel – Montebourg, well worth the short 20 min drive from the Chateau.
If you are looking for traditional “normand” food, we can recommend a meal at Le John Steele, not even 10 min away by car.
You cannot go to Normandie and not have crepes (of course we have crepes Sunday but we mean…more crepes) , we really like those at Le Madelo
If it is sea food you are after we would recommend la Cale Marine Lakalakiki by the sea, about 35 min drive from the chateau.
There are of course tons of great places yet to discover but never hesitate to ask for tips, our residents have been exploring and growing our “pantry of great spots to eat from”!
There are also a lot of opportunities to “mettre la main a la pate” as we say in french (to “get invloved” basically) and take cooking lessons. If you are more into tasting, be it wine and/or oysters, we also know who to call for that!