This year two restaurants in Preuilly sur Claise have made it into the Guide Routard Gourmand Centre Val de Loire. They are the Auberge St Nicolas and the Restaurant de l'Image. Routard is the infallible guide to un bon rapport qualité/prix (good value, good quality) dining relied upon by all smart travellers and visitors in France.
L'Image is run by the Chedozeau family and we dine there often. The entry in Routard says:
'Une sage institution qui doit son nom à une autre institution, catholique celles-la: Notre Dame. Pour ceux qui aiment bien manger, dans un cadre hors du temps, voici une adresse en or, avec habitués au bar à l'entrée, salle de resto aux papier peint et nappes rose (roses aussi dans les vases, et rose aux joues des convives)... Belle carte à l'ancienne et bonne surprises dans l'assiette. Des plantes, en rideau rouge pour séparer la salle, et dans un coin, un petit musée dédié à De Gaulle, entre autres. On croit rêver ! Restaurant de l'Image, 13 pl des Halles, menu 11€ midi, €17.50 soir.'
I translate this as:
'A venerable institution which owes its name to another institution, Catholic this one: Our Lady. For those who like to eat well, in a timeless tradition, here is an address worth its weight in gold, with regulars in the bar at the entrance, dining room decorated with rose coloured wallpaper and linen (roses too in the vases, and rosy cheeked guests)... A fine old style menu and nice surprises on the plate. The plants, a red curtain to divide the room, and in a corner, a little museum dedicated to de Gaulle, amongst others. It's like a dream! The Restaurant of the Image, 13 Market Hall Place, lunchtime fixed price menu €11, dinner from €17.50.'
We thought this was a charming entry and were really pleased for them, as they work incredibly hard and really deserve this nice review. Christophe, who works front of house, was typically off-hand about it, and grumbled that it would only lead to more work and they already have enough customers - any more and it is impossible for Jean-Michel, his brother the chef, to maintain the quality of the dishes served. He just rolled his eyes when he saw me copying down the entry in Routard.
(Picture taken by our friend Adrian.)