One of my first days in Bayeux, I took a walk when there was frost on the ground, on the trees, and on the little wooden bridge near the River Aure that runs through the tiny town.
I was intrigued by the old, beautiful building just there, and learned that at the far end lived a little bistro. Their menu was outside. I had a look, and I fell in love.
On Friday of that week, I treated myself to lunch there and was very lucky to get the very last table, since all other guests appeared to have a reservation. The handsome Antoine was my very kind server who spoke really good English, and was very eager to welcome me. He explained that his name is like Antonio Banderas. I smiled and nodded, well familiar with this name :).
That Friday was the start of my weekly love affair with this restaurant. I so looked forward to each rendezvous, for which I always made a next reservation before I left the current one.
To begin, the setting is unique and quite beautiful – right on the river. When I looked down from the window, I felt a little wobbly, like I was on a boat. On a sunny day – which occurred often on my Fridays – Bayeux simply shone and sparkled, especially at this location.
Antoine, Vincent, and their team took care of me as if I was a cherished family member. The last time I dined there, a glass of Champagne was placed at my (usual) table, as a gift from the crew.
And, the food was spectacular. Their signature galette (buckwheat crepe) was also the bun for burgers, so I had to enjoy this more than once. On another date, Vincent kindly explained the Chef’s special, in his very best English, which was a slow-cooked lamb shank with mashed potatoes mixed with local cheese. I barely let him finish speaking before I said, I want that!
(I was actually so inspired that as soon as I returned to Redondo Beach, I made a similar, very humble rendition of this dish; it hardly compared!)
Even though their meals, usually graced with perfect frites, were filling of course, I always had to order dessert. When Antoine brought me the apple crepe, that I believe is named Notre Dame (of course :), my first thought was, I wished my crepes looked like that. It was divine. On another occasion, the pistachio ice cream, locally made, was equally perfect.
By now I know that the only thing that would make my experience of this tiny corner of Nirvana better, would be to return one day, in the not-so-distant future.
I intend to do just that.