Le Moulin de Dausse – fantastic food which is anything but run of the mill.

There’s only one thing I like more than eating out and that’s eating out in a place I have never been before. So, when friends invited us to have dinner at a small restaurant we hadn’t heard of, in a nearby village, we jumped at the chance and it was wonderful.

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Surprise starter at Le Moulin de Dausse – a fantastic beginning to our meal.  We are so lucky to have such a lovely restaurant near our holiday rental!

We had drinks in the covered barn as we drooled over the menu. All the courses were set, apart from the main where there was a choice of three dishes. Of course, we all know it’s easy to write a menu, the proof of the pudding would be in the eating……. I couldn’t wait!

Setting the Scene

We were shown into the small interior space which had a relaxed yet stylish feel. Much thought and effort had gone into creating this wonderful stage to showcase our meal. From the pretty napkin rings, to the unusual crockery whilst carefully placed candles flickered as if to signify the start of our meal.

I knew as soon as the first plates were brought to the table that we were in for a treat. The presentation was stunning, yet executed with an element of humour and confidence – I loved the flavours, I savoured each part of the dish, marvelling at the different taste and texture combinations, the clever use of local ingredients and how traditional cooking techniques were mixed with more contemporary methods – it was an absolute joy to experience.

The Menu 32.50€

Surprise Starter

Taste of 4 Hors D’Oeuvres

Home smoked salmon, salmon tartare and lavender mayonnaise
Duck liver breakfast with coffee, orange, egg and bread
Crab with red onion and tomato chutney
Belly pork with a creamy mustard foam

Main Course

Fillet of veal, beef cheek, veal crackling and jus
Or
Fillet of barbary duck, cauliflower croquet and wine and sherry sauce
Or
Fillet of sea bass with garlic purée and saffron sauce

Amuse Bouche

Assortment of three little desserts

Homemade prune ice cream with white chocolate cream
Banana mousse with tropical fruit liqueur
Cherry coulis topped with creme anglaise

Or

Assortment of cheese

Wonderful Meal

The amuse bouche certainly got our tastebuds going and the selection of mini starters was genius in the choice of contrasting ingredients. My favourite was the juicy pork topped with a light yet fiery mustard mousse. The lavender butter served with the bread was unusual and tasty – quite a talking point around the table.

Starter at Moulin de Dausse

Really enjoyed the idea of 4 mini starters – it was hard to decide on my favourite

I chose the beef and veal dish as my main course which was a delight. Tender slices of perfectly cooked veal filet lay on a bed of slow cooked melt in the mouth beef cheeks topped with crispy veal crackling – my mouth is watering as a write this down.

Then a lovely pre-dessert – the elderflower milkshake was one of the more unusual flavour combinations of the evening – the milky drink really emphasised the elderflower taste, which surprised and impressed me.

Finally, a selection of mini desserts – the banana mousse was so light with a powerful fresh taste and the prune sorbet was excellent.

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What a finale – a selection of delicious desserts.

Why you should visit Le Moulin de Dausse

Eating out is so much more than a meal – it’s time with friends, discussions and laughter blend seamlessly, it’s a celebration, a getogether, but whatever the reason, it’s because we want to be entertained, looked after and made to feel special.

Le Moulin de Dausse offers all of this as standard but excels in the way the food is created and served. Yes the menu changes but what always remains is the passion with which the food is cooked and presented. The attention to detail is always there from each item on a plate to the plate itself – the couple who own this restaurant should be congratulated on the whole experience they provide, as it is theatre on a plate in a sumptuous setting.

As you can tell, I loved every moment of the evening and left the old mill feeling entertained, inspired and hungry for a return visit to this jewel of a restaurant.

  •   Click here for their website and to read their current menu.
  • Also check their opening times as they do close for the Winter.
  • Always book a table 0033 553 41 26 00 to avoid disappointment.

Le Caillau – wonderful restaurant offering local produce with a global feel

Le Caillau, situated near Vire sur Lot, nestles serenely in a picturesque valley amongst a collection of vineyards, exactly what you would expect from a 300 year old winery. The selection of buildings radiate around a beautiful courtyard with its central fountain covered in flowers as the focal point.

As you wander through the distinctive and characterful metal gates at the entrance, you are met with an air of tranquility as the various eating areas come into view. The indoor restaurant, the open barn filled with a mix of different tables and chairs, lit by large ornate chandeliers and then the courtyard itself, where the tables sit beneath the summery parasols for that all important shade on a warm sunny day.

We were shown to our table, given menus and offered an aperitif – I chose the local sparkling wine which was recommended, and was not disappointed, as it was a delight. Also, it was great to know that it was made a mere kilometre away from where I was sitting – now that’s what I call local produce!

The menu read beautifully, offering the perfect combination of contemporary dishes using local ingredients. I had already earmarked dishes I could try on my next visit


A La Carte dishes

The starters included chilli garlic vegetables and goats cheese fritters, tomato chutney, rocket and toasted seed salad or seared scallops, asian herb sauce, crunchy vegetables with lime dressing and roasted crushed chilli peanuts.

Then for main course slow cooked roulade of pork, gratin dauphinois, smoked bacon, beans, peas and a cherry cider sauce or seared tuna steak, potatoes with tomatoes and herbs, samphire, roasted vegetables and a chorizo sauce.

Of course you had to make room for desserts such as baked kirsch chocolate tart with cherry sorbet or what about mint and lemon catalana with raspberry compote.

Click here to see their full menu

 

Menu du Jour

Choosing a dish was always going to be difficult and then became even more problematic when we were told of their menu du jour. A main course, dessert, glass of wine and coffee for 13.50 euros.

When I then learned that the main course was a duo of home smoked salmon and haddock on a bed of summer green vegetables with a cream sauce and aubergine caviar – my decision was made. Backed up by the nods of approval from the people on a neighbouring table who had already sampled this beautifully created dish.

The house red wine – a Malbec of course in these parts – was lovely as well, and the option of an organic variety is well worth a try with its powerful yet smooth flavour, and was again, very locally produced.

Wine Tasting and Food Pairing

Every Wednesday during July, August and September from 5.30 -7pm for 30 euros per person you can enjoy a wonderful eating, drinking and learning experience – what could be better?

  • Learn about local independent wines
  • How to match food and wine
  • Taste 6 local wines accompanied by produce of the region
  • Gain advice about where to buy wines in the Lot

 

Why does Le Caillau stand out?

What I loved about Le Caillau was the balance they have achieved between seasonal elements, decor, ambience and location, in order to create something really special. That recipe of local produce meeting with more unusual ingredients to offer the unique, whilst still retaining the classic methods that epitomise French cuisine.

This restaurant is forward thinking, not only in the design of new dishes, but through constantly evolving and by adding its own stamp, such as home smoked produce. For Le Caillau, their passion for new ideas, combined with their use of very local produce, creates the perfect recipe for their success.

Click here to see the Le Caillau website for more information.