When God created heaven he used the Chèvre d’Or as His final test. Now that I’ve stayed there I don’t have to be a good boy any longer-I can’t imagine what else He has to offer.
The Chèvre d’Or is magisterially perched 1300 feet above the blue Mediterranean in Eze, a medieval village carved out of a mountain. In describing Eze, Nietzsche, a frequent visitor, said: ‘Here the days follow one another with a beauty I would define as insolent.’
The Chèvre d’Or offers the full gamut of amenities one would expect from a 5-star property: a large staff to anticipate your every desire, elegant decor, Michelin-starred dining but much, much more-no two of the 37 rooms are alike in shape or decor, many with terraces facing the ocean and others with entrances that open onto the narrow medieval streets. Every hour offers an exceptional view from the shimmering blue waters that are warmed by the morning sun, the pinkish hues as the sun sets and the pearl-like string of lights that reach back towards Nice as darkness falls.
The Nez (de Neuilly) and I arrived in the late afternoon and the voiturier took charge of our car and luggage while alerting reception of our arrival. Pascal, the assistant manager, greeted us and invited us to join him for a bienvenue coupe after we settled in to our spectacular room looking out over the Mediterranean.
On our short walk back to the bar that also serves as a breakfast room until the warm weather arrives and continues unabated, we passed a veritable menagerie of sculptures on our path and in the gardens that cover the hillside.
The bar was super cozy and we positioned ourselves in window seats, our backs reaching for the ocean. Stefan, the bar manager, brought out the Lalique-inspired flutes sprouting from a chevre into which he poured a rosé from Taittinger, one of the champagnes he is featuring as part of a rotation that changes every two months.
Next up was a diner gastronomique at the 2-star La Chèvre d’Or. The very genial Bruno seated us and informed us that Chef Roman Kervarrec had prepared a surprise menu de dégustation that began with asperges vertes croquante aux agrumes du Pays accompagnées d’une Maltaise et jus de grenade-a perfect way to usher in printemps and a foie gras de Landes au Calvados served with granny apples flavored with ginger and a glaze of caramelized cider in salted butter.
From the 700 different wines in his cave Claude began a symphony of local wines from small producers with a Domaine de la Source vin blanc bellet:
Cépage Rolle, Nez: fleurs blanches, rondeur en bouche et fin de bouche, très bon
For her main course the Nez was presented a Rouget Barbet lightly perfumed with a purée of Olive caillette accompanied by a lasagana of fennel and pumpkin slices served with
Domaine de Curbéassealso made from the Rolle grape with the same hint of white flowers but fuller in the mouth and longer lasting-very good
I feasted on a supreme roti from Bresse served with braised celery in an Indian inspired sauce accompanied by a thigh with a velouté of foie gras.
Claude poured me a (Saint Victoire) blend of cabernet and grenache whose nose was red fruits that was very full in the mouth and long lasting-excellent.
Our celestial evening continued with Palet chocolat “Coeur de Guanaja” aux noisettes du Piémont and a tarte au citron and Menton meringue.
Claude treated us to two exceptional dessert wines:Vin cuit au feu de bois de Provence
nez: très fleuri boisé, très ample en bouche et longueur fin de bouche, excellent
2009 Revelette/moelleux /Peter Fischer vigneronnez: très fruité, très ample en bouche et longueur en fin de bouche, excellent
On our way to our room we made a final stop at the bar where Stefan had been saving a 1931 Armagnac Reserve to encourage dreams as we slept in the clouds.
Calling the Chèvre d’Or an hotel is like calling Chateau d’Yquem a sweet wine. It is an unrivaled experience to share with a lover, family or if you are old enough, to be added to your bucket list.
Eze Village, France