Penne Cole's thoughts on food, travel and more
It is a perfect spring day, with not a cloud in the blue sky as we drive through rolling green fields. We are making a day trip to Monet’s gardens in Giverny, and our first stop is the picturesque Le Moulin de Fourge, a restaurant located in a converted 200-year-old mill.
We have high hopes for this restaurant – Hilary Clinton is said to have enjoyed lamb loin and lobster salad here. However, we are disappointed to see that a bus packed with tourists has gotten there before us. Anywhere that bus-loads of tourists go is never a good sign, and my spirits fall a little. My mood is lifted, somewhat, by the beautiful view that greets our eyes. The setting is just as bucolic as was promised, complete with a peacefully turning mossy green wheel.
Le Moulin de Fourges must be larger than it looks from the outside. There are no sign of the tourists from the bus in the restaurant, and being this early (we arrived at noon), we manage to grab a prized table by the window overlooking the river Epte.
The waiter allows the three of us girls to share a set menu with an entree, two main courses, and a dessert. We supplement this with an additional main, and by the time the meal is over, we are glad we were circumspect in our ordering.
We start with a complimentary amuse-bouche, with pesto and cheese followed by cake in raspberry sauce. I am surprised by the latter, having expected it to be a savoury cube of bread. For the entree, we share foie gras terrine with rocket and perfectly crunchy toast with the creamiest butter I’ve ever tasted. I order the lamb stew for my main course. It’s spring, which means it’s the best season for lamb, but there’s just enough chill in the air for me to enjoy a good stew. The chunks of meat melt in my mouth but the stew is a tad on the salty side for my taste. The mains on the set menu are noticeably smaller than the one we ordered a la carte, but are still large enough to satisfy us, especially with the large basket of freshly-baked bread on the table. Dessert is a light-as-air chocolate mousse cake, with a layer of caramel in the middle.
Overall, the food is delicious, and the service, while slow at first, was attentive towards the end when more people start filling our dining room. The atmosphere is beautiful, and if it’s a warm enough day, do try to get a table on the terrace outside by the river.
The meal, without drinks, comes to just under 20 Euros per person, which is excellent value for money given the touristy neighbourhood we are in, and the delicious food we are served. However, don’t let the waiter suggest a wine for you without double checking the price on the wine list – our half bottle, which while very good, did cost us 20 Euros.
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