Burgundy Tours: A visit to Couches!

burgundyGeezo. It is hot, hot, HOT in Burgundy just now! With temperatures reaching around 38’C and the sun burning a hole in the blue skies, we’re not that far off from what we left in the UAE. However, due to a slight over-exposure to the sun yesterday, we decided to do a little sight-seeing and exploring today instead, so off we set for the Chateau de Couches!

chateauSome of the roads to Couches that we went on were pretty small and windy, however we enjoyed driving alongside the canal and seeing different boats bobbing along on our way. Once we arrived in Couches, the Chateau was very easy to find – In fact it was the first thing we saw on entering the village! For a very reasonable 7 euros, we got a guided tour around the Chateau (roughly 1 hour long) and although it was in French, they also provided us with an information booklet in English. The guide was also able to speak English and could answer any additional questions we had.

couches

It’s an interesting wee castle with beautiful views of the surrounding countryside, especially on as gorgeous a day as this! However the highlight of the tour for us was going into the network of underground tunnels beneath the castle, which were used to store food and allow the servants to move about within the grounds without being seen.

underground caves

After the tour was over and with stomachs rumbling in hunger, we went off in search of a place for lunch! Our guide suggested heading further into Couches, to find a few options just across from the Maire (town hall).

We found this very pretty restaurant, La Tour Bajole and what a wee gem it turned out to be!

La Tour Bajole

For €13 (£9.00 roughly) I had the Dejeuner D’Ete or Summer lunch, which comprised of a choice of five salads followed by a dessert. I opted for a duck and melon salad, which was super simple, fresh and delicious. The ginger and lemon dressing perfectly complemented it and it really didn’t lack anything.

duck

For dessert, I had a milk chocolate mousse with salted caramel which, whilst maybe not the most appetising to look at, certainly tasted good!

mousse

Not fancying a salad, (Quelle surprise!) Mark opted for the €17 menu (£13.00) for which he got a starter, main course and choice of dessert. For starter he had a fish terrine with a herb sauce which, although is something that he would never voluntarily go for, he actually enjoyed – especially the sauce which was delicious!

terrine

He followed that with a steak and green peppercorn sauce with dauphinoise potatoes. His steak was beautifully rare (too rare for my liking!) and extremely tender. The dauphinoise potatoes were creamy, with a crunchy top and, going by his breath afterwards, had copious amounts of garlic in them!

steak

potatoes

To finish the meal with flair, Mark opted for a raspberry macaroon. From the menu description we were expecting maybe a couple of small raspberry macaroons, similar to what you might buy in the shops. We did not expect this…

macaroon

Wow. What a dessert. Even though it was proclaimed delicious, he actually couldn’t finish it all – that’s how huge it was!

We ended the meal with two coffees and some delicious, complimentary tuilles, meringues and chocolates.

meringues

 

coffee

For two people, having the meal outlined above with two bottles of badoit sparkling water it cost us €47 which we felt was very reasonable! We really enjoyed our trip to Couches, especially the meal and would definitely return again! (In fact, we’re already planning our return trip with my parents!)

However, on a final note… If anyone is in the region in August, a visit to Couches is a must – if only to see this 4500 egg omelette! (Please take a photo of it for me!)

omelette

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