Wednesday, June 22, 2011

FAREWELL LUNCH AT L’AMANDIN’S. MONSTER FAILS TO SHOW

22.06.11 FAREWELL LUNCH AT L’AMANDIN’S. TERASCON MONSTER FAILS TO SHOW
Lavender in your dessert? Sounds strange to Irish ears but it is gorgeous. At least it was today at Auberge de l’Amandin in Beaucaire.

It was our last big meal in Provence so we skipped the Menu du Jour and went for a set menu priced at €23. Starter was a local speciality, a Franco-Italian dish: a Pissaladiere, with aubergine caviar and grilled Tuna Fish. Mains was an excellent pan-fried Duckling fillet with an orange caramel sauce.


Then came dessert, a blackboard full of choices. I went for apricot with a honey and lavender sauce and served with vanilla ice-cream. Brilliant. Was tempted to ask for a second.

Earlier, we had visited the Chateau de Provence at Tarascon, a very impressive building, began by Good King Rene in the 15th century. It is largely intact, though unfurnished. We were able to see the private quarters of the King, his own dressing rooms, chambers (including toilet arrangements), also his confessor’s room adjacent to the church.

It is quite a tall building and, from the huge roof, we had fine views to the chateau of Beaucaire, just across the Rhone, over the town of Tarascon and of traffic on the Rhone. There is also a courtyard and garden on the lower level.
But there was no sign of the Tarasque, the legendary terror of the area. He was man eating monster, half-lion, half armadillo and it was St Martha who came to the rescue, the event still celebrated each June. Posters up around the place suggest this year’s is a Tribute to Buffalo Bill!