The whole object of travel is not to set foot on foreign land; it is at last to set foot on one’s own country as a foreign land.” – G.K. Chesterton

Thursday, 9 January 2014

Excellent French dinner @ La Fleur de Sel, Dinan (France)

After our day trip to Saint-Malo, we were ready to sit down to a delicious French meal. We'd made reservations at La Fleur de Sel the previous evening after dinner across the street, and we arrived a little before the restaurant opened for dinner service. We were seated anyway, at a table towards the back of the second dining room - which was perfect for us with a noisy 5-year-old child.

The empty second dining room, before the restaurant began dinner service:

Despite the isolated location, we weren't at all neglected, and we were attended to by the owner himself, who was a personable and charming chap. The service was attentive and helpful, and the food was excellent. There were three levels of prix fixe courses available, as well as a kids menu (only for the under 15s) and an a-la-carte menu. The 26€ prix-fixe menu gave two choices for each of the three courses, and the 34€ menu gave more options with completely different dishes to the 26€ menu. I went for the former and hubby had the latter. The boy got a 2-course meal from Menu Junior (13.90€), which also offered a 3-course option for 4€ more. The kids menu was the most sophisticated kids menu I have encountered, with three choices for each course. We all enjoyed the delicious food, including the 5-year-old, who can be picky when dining out.

An apéritif for hubby:

Amuse-bouche was a delicious cold pumpkin soup:

Hubby's entrée: 6 huître de Bretagne, vinaigre d'échalotes et blinis de sarrasin (half-dozen Brittany oysters with shallot vinegar and buckwheat blinis). I love oysters au naturale, and these were yummy, however I am still partial to the plump Pacific oysters we used to get in Australia and Japan:

My entrée was Tartare de saumon aux herbs fraîches, caprons et croustillant de galette (salmon tartare with fresh herbes, capers and crispy galette). Beautifully presented, and the tartare was seasoned well with a good balance of salty and sour. I'd never had such large capers before:

The boy chose fish for his main course, Filet de poisson du marché, petits légumes au beurre (fish of the day with buttered vegetables). The cod was cooked perfectly, and the buttered vegetables were fantastic (though it was near impossible to get him eating the veges):

Hubby's Dos de cabillaud au four & Tranche d'aubergine confite à la pulpe d'olive noire, salade de roquette & ail caramelisé, vinaigre de citron artisanal & mousse d'avocat (baked cod and sliced eggplant confit in black olive pulp, with rocket and caramelised garlic salad, artisanal lemon vinegar and avocado mousse). This was a creative dish that was well put together. Hubby is not a big fan of aubergine, so that baby came to this mama. The 'salad' was interestingly presented and very tasty with the sweet caramelised garlic. And lastly, the components of the avocado mousse combined well, with the slightly crunchy vegetable cubes offsetting the soft texture of the mousse:

My main was Aile de raie en vol au vent, pesto de roquette & basilic aux noix et légumes d'été confits (skate vol au vent with rocket & basil walnut pesto, and summer vegetables confit). Gorgeously presented with amazing flavours:

For dessert, the boy chose chocolate ice cream, and it was yummy! This, he had no problem finishing on his own (without touching the fruits, of course):

Hubby could choose any dessert from the a-la-carte menu, and he opted for the one that gave a variety of sweets on one plate. Good choice, as we got to taste many desserts offered on the menu, including an apricot madeleine, chocolate creme, salted butter caramel profiterole and a fruit parfait. They were all scrumptious:

My dessert was Profiteroles au chocolat, amandes grillées, crème fouettée et glace vanille (chocolate profiteroles, grilled almonds and vanilla ice cream). This was every bit as good as it looks! Profiteroles with vanilla ice cream sandwiched within and topped with melted chocolate. This had to be the best version of profiteroles I've ever had!

And that, my friends, was another excellent meal in France!

La Fleur de Sel
7 Rue Sainte-Claire
22100 Dinan
Tel. +33 2 96 85 15 14

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