Wednesday, 24 June 2020

Living With Less Choice in the Loire Valley

Restaurants are open again, after their enforced closure during the Covid19 crisis in France. But they are having to manage with some necessary public health restrictions. This means the tables are further apart, which means fewer diners at each service. There is no tradition of double services here for either lunch or dinner, so nobody is rushed out the door so the table can be set again. Restaurants here must manage in other ways. One way they are doing this is reducing waste by no longer offering a la carte, but only offering set menus, usually daily changing to take advantage of seasonal ingredients. For French diners, this is perfectly acceptable as they are used to it. Many workers restaurants already do this for their good value traditional lunches, and there is already a strong existing culture of anti-wastage in the hospitality industry here. But now Michelin starred gastronomic restaurants are joining the trend too. For travellers it can be a really authentic experience to do as the French do every day, and trust the chef to serve them what is good on the day. It saves time, food waste and the risk of multi-page menus that are handled by dozens of people. Now the waiter can just tell you what is being served today and you get to enjoy truly local seasonal food just like a French person does. (And don't worry -- if you really don't like something, or have allergies, the chef will suggest something else for you.)

Gastronomic meal at a small restaurant.  Indre et Loire, France. Photographed by Susan Walter. Tour the Loire Valley with a classic car and a private guide.
Pork main course at a small gastronomic restaurant that we use often.

To enquire about our private guided tours of chateaux, wineries, markets and more email us or use our contact form. More tour ideas can be found on the Loire Valley Time Travel website.