During a recent trip to Honfleur I discovered two wonderful but vastly different hotels and fabulous dinners…

During a recent trip to Honfleur I discovered two wonderful but vastly different hotels and fabulous dinners…

Deauville with its Casino and American Film Festival each September is a weekend destination of choice for Parisians.

A mere two hours by train from Paris’ Gare Saint Lazare it as an arrival point for those continuing on to the small port town of Honfleur

The old port has been an inspiration for Corot, Monet and Boudin who formed what became known as the école de Honfleur.
We were staying at L’Auberge de la Source, a short bus ride away in nearby Bernaville-la-Bertran. Our suite was on the second floor of a classic colombage (half-timbered) building. A small entry room and a spacious bedroom with blonde, planked floors, flat screen TVs, Wi-Fi and down comforters give the space a rustically modern feel. We had barely deposited our luggage when Veronique arrived with cider and pastry.




A cozy restaurant  serves stylish, filling food.

Jean-Michel, the young sommelier/maitre d’, welcomed us and I sauntered into the kitchen and chatted with the chef.

Chef Yannick Bernouin goes to the market every day and selects that which he finds most appealing and inspiring based on the estimated number of diners.

Fois gras that had been marinated overnight in cognac and port and roasted for 7 minutes was a great first course

A bottle of L. Crochet Sancerre was a perfect accompaniment to our roasted half lobster, claw and a filet of lotte with sauce amoricain.

A tangy fruit salad of pineapple, lichi nuts, passion fruit, kiwi, orange in their juices with a spritz of the sec ret ingredient-Schweppes Tonic preceded a 12 year old Adrien Camut Calvados that capped this delightful evening.

1460 Barneville-la -Bertran, Calvados


Auberge de la Source 3*
Chemin du Moulin This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Next stop was the super elegant spa, La FERME SAINT SIMEON, perched on a cliff in Honfleur with a commanding view of the mouth of the Seine and the bridge to Le Havre.After dropping our bags we scoped out the indoor pool and full service spa before heading into town on foot.The old port has been an inspiration for Corot, Monet and Boudin who formed what became known as the école de Honfleur.It was the departure point for many French voyages of discovery to the New World including in 1608, Samuel de Champlain, founder of modern day Quebec.Our voyage of discovery was highlighted by a visit to GRIBOUILLE, a shop specializing in products of Normandy, where Fanny poured me a taste of a 25-year old Calvados. It was only 11:30But when in Normandy…She pointed us in the direction of L’Homme de Bois, a charming distinctly non-touristy address. Not wishing to spoil a highly anticipated seven-course dinner we had soupe des poissonsand a glass of Sancerre while chatting with our Norman neighbors.We climbed back up the hill and relaxed until the dinner bell rang. The evening got started with a coupe de Ruinart rosé at the bar before Pascal, the hotel manager, came to collect us and seat us in the chandeliered dining room that offers views of the Seine-bravo for the just awarded 1 star in the 2012 Michelin Guide.In summer the expansive terrace groans with revelers.Pascal selected the menu gastronomique that began with a glass of Gewurtztraminer Vendages Tardines 2007 whose fruity flavors married pressé de foie gras de canard gelée de vieux porto.A creamy, silky, veloute de Morue (Cod) blended seamlessly with a white Mont Louis La Taille aux LoupsThe oeuf de Poule Bressane gave to new meaning to the word poached egg as it floated in a bowl over creamy potatoes and shaved black truffles. We switched to a Mercurey 2008 from Juillot to ease it down.

The “main” course was Agneau de Lait de Pyrenées. Three small chops roasted to rosé perfection accompanied by cervelles et ris å l’estragon and a soft gallette de pommes de terre. Several glasses of 2007 Gaillac Renaissance that extended into the cheese course that included Norman favorites: Camembert, Livarot and Pont l’Eveque.

I let out a notch in my belt to accommodate the Vacherin Glacé with a mousse of champagne, gelée of citrus fruits and a Clementine sorbet prior to the finale: a chocolate sphere containing passion fruit and nuts.

The ever-charming Pascal suggested that we repair to the bar and warming fireplace for a flight of 18 year old and 25 year old Calvados.

My diet began the next morning when I contented myself with coffee and smoked salmon in spite of another lavish buffet.

Having had this much fun in winter I can’t wait until summer to come back, perhaps with friends and clients.


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