Saturday, June 28, 2008

Le Gourmand de Saint Jean - Lyon

Lyon is famous for its Bouchons, serving food far away from la nouvelle cuisine. Here you may enjoy traditional rich local food. Lunch my first full day was at le Gourmand de Saint Jean, in the heart of old Lyon on the west bank of the river Saône. It was certainly not the member of the exclusive club of genuine bouchons, but it had all the traditional dishes on the menu and I chose two. I was very satisfied with the result.

Location: BBBBB

Le Gourmand de Saint Jean is located by a small square in the medieval part of Lyon. Here you may sit outside in a historic setting and enjoy your food. This restaurant has a superb location.

Atmosphere: BBB

In spite of the location, I believe that the restaurant has not used its full potential. Chairs and tables outside were small and rather uncomfortable.

Price level: BBBBB

I paid € 20 for a full three course lunch, with an entree, main dish and cheese plus 25 cl of the rosé wine of the house. This is a good bargain.

Service: BBBBB

As I speak French the menu did not pose any problems, but you may have problems if you only speak English. I chose from the menu, and asked the waiter if I did not knew the terms, and they helped. When ordered, the food was served swiftly. So full score for service.

Food: BBBBB-

I loved all the food!! I ordered three courses, out of which two belonged to the typical dishes served in a traditional bouchon.

Chevre in puff pastry with fresh salad with vinaigrette

I love hot chevre, and this was certainly another and a new way to serve the delicious goats cheese.

The cheese was baked in fresh puff pastry with honey, and the contrast between the crisp pastry and the melting cheese was awesome. The crisp and completely fresh salad was served with a delicious traditional French vinaigrette dressing. Scrumptious!!!

Quenelle de Brochet au Sauce Laurencin (Pike dumpling with lobster sauce)

Quenelles or dumplings made from fish is a traditional dish served at a bouchon, and the quenelle served was shaped more like sausage, fried on the outside and beneath the crisp crust I found a delicious mousse made from pike.

The lobster sauce was rich made from stock and cream, well seasoned and balanced. The only things served by its side was rice with carrots. This was another good choice!!!

Saint-Marcellin Cheese

I do prefer cheese to a dessert, when given the choice, and in France you may always choose cheese.

The Saint-Marcellin cheese is produced locally and has a very creamy, nearly runny consistency. Served with a salad and good French bread it was a perfect end to my lunch.

And I ordered a 1/4 litre rosé wine, good both for fish, chicken and cheese.

Rating the Le Gourmand de Saint Jean experience: BBBBB- (4,6 points)

One out of two good restaurants I would recommend in Lyon. Good food for a low price in old Lyon.

Le Gourmand de Saint Jean
4 place Neuve Saint-Jean, 69005 Lyon
:04 78 42 45 59

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