Restaurants within easy reach of La Vieille Grange range from country auberges offering simple food at very reasonable prices to elegant upmarket restaurants with superb food – such as the Pont de L’Ouysse.
Auberge du Cantou, Fenelon (1.5 km) Just up the road towards Chateau Fenelon, Cantou is the closest restaurant to Mercadiol—a 10-min stroll away. It specialises in duck dishes and also sells eggs as well its own tinned produce. Open on weekends from May to Sept (also over Easter), from Friday to Sunday, for lunch and dinner, and every day in the high season (June till 15 Sept). The evening menus at 20E and 22E are excellent value for well-presented local fare–mousse de foi gras, moist and flavoursome duck confit and walnut creme brûlée confit are particularly recommended. It is a good idea to ring or call in first. T 05 53 29 64 36 fermeaubergedordogne.com
Chez Nicole, Masclat (3 km) This well patronised bar/restaurant serves lunch only and has a cheap, homely set menu. It’s popular for Sunday lunch, so you will need to book in high season. In summer they organise a series of outdoor ‘concerts’ where you pay for a sit-down meal at long tables and listen to the music. Closed Mondays. T 05 65 37 62 04 05
Chez Combroux Florent (‘Chez Crouzil’), Masclat (3 km) The set price lunch menu here offers simple country fare with local specialities – but you need to book to let them know you are coming. There is a pleasant outdoor area and small bar. Not usually open for evening meals during the week , but Saturday nights feature an entertaining old-time bal musette with traditional music and dancing, including a meal—worth it for the entertainment value alone. T 05 65 37 61 01 www.restaurant-masclat.fr
Le St Ju, St Julien de Lampon (4 km) The local watering hole is a friendly, noisy, fun bar when the village is en fete and at other times too. It offers live music on Fri nights in summer on the terrace by the church. Pizzas are on offer (lunch and evening). T 05 53 29 70 13
Le Roi Carotte, St Julien de Lampon (4.5 km) A new team is on deck at this popular and well-patronised restaurant based in a large, converted barn. The food is local fare, the atmosphere relaxed and children are welcomed. In summer, dine on the terrace overlooking the potager and fields. Booking recommended, closed from Nov to end March. Menus from 20E, a good wine list and OK house wines. T 05 53 29 82 33; closed on Tuesdays. www.leroicarotte.com
Hotel Restaurant Le Rouffillac, Rouffillac (4.5 km) Across the bridge from St Julien, this traditional hotel is now under the management of the very successful Relais du Paysan at Carlux and offers similar food. T 05 53 29 70 24 www.hotelrouffillhacdordogne.com
Le Relais du Paysan, Carlux (6 km) Tables in the spacious dining room and terrace below Carlux village have either castle or valley views. On offer are generous servings of good regional fare – meaty salads of home-cured meats, vegetables, walnut cake and a bowl of seasonal fruit – with quirky twists such as edible flowers. It’s popular with locals but service can be slow. Operates in high season only. No cards. T 05 53 29 41 90
L’Escapade, Carlux (6.5 km) This French-Australian owned bar/restaurant has a pleasant dining room with valley views and offers a 3-course lunch menu for 14E (including coffee or a glass of wine), an a la carte bar/snack menu, a menu du terroir and ‘specials’ on certain nights, such as fish and chips or tourte au kangourou. Closes last week December to mid-January. T05 53 28 39 80 www.lescadapade-perigord.fr
Delicatessens Restaurant, Milhac (5.5 km) This stylish restaurant and its associated epicerie is set in a tastefully restored stone building in the centre of the pretty village of Milhac. It has a spacious dining room and a very pleasant terrace overlooking the picturesque main street. The 14E lunch menu, in 2017 featuring a series of national cuisines each Tuesday, is great value; the main menu 29E for entree, main and desert is also good value, and the setting on the terrace on a summers evening is delightful. The food is light, seasonally based, from local producers and well-presented. T 05 65 32 70 56 http://www.delicatessens.fr
Les 7 Sources, Lamothe-Fenelon (8 km) There have been several restaurants in this pleasant lakeside location, and this relatively new one, offering a light take on regional dishes, is well-regarded by locals. Stroll around the lake, to work up an appetite. Open April to December. Booking recommended. T 05 65 32 62 68 www.les7sources.com
Le Bellevue, Gourdon (13 km) With just a small dining room and pavement terrace attached to bar/hotel on Gourdon circuit road (almost opposite the Post Office), the Bellevue offers a good value set-price lunch menu; simple fare. Be early for a lunch table, especially on market days. A favourite with locals and a pleasant spot for a drink or evening meal in summer. T 05 65 41 06 17 www.restaurantlebellevuegourdon.fr
La Promenade, Gourdon (13 km) Beside the war memorial park on the circuit on the northern edge of the old town centre, this Logis hotel has tables on a large street-front covered terrace as well as pleasant indoor dining room. Its good-value set menu has local dishes with a (mostly) light touch. English spoken and free wifi. T 05 65 41 41 44 www.lapromenade-gourdon.fr
Chez Jo Pizzeria, Gourdon (13 km) Recommended by locals as the best takeaway pizza option in Gourdon. Located at 99 Ave Leon Gambetta – opposite the Casino supermarket (on the road to Gourdon station and Le Vigan).
Diabolo Fraise, Nabirat (15 km) Traditional fare is served in a cheery dining room overlooking the civic square. The lunch special at 14 E has soup, entrée, main course and dessert (bread and wine included) but no menu, the food just comes out – roast meats, local veg, home cooked desserts. Well worth a visit. Booking is essential, as it’s popular with locals and visitors alike.
T 05 53 59 36 83
Hotellerie Plaisance, Vitrac (18 km) This family-run three-star Logis hotel on the banks of the Dordogne has a lovely dining room and a pleasant terrace for summer dining. It offers light servings of regional food with a lunch special at 18E (excellent value) and standard menus starting at 28E. Highly recommended. Closed out of season and every Sunday evening and on Fridays in March and April. 05 53 31 39 39 www.hotelplaisance.com
Maison Dupeliac, Sarlat outskirts (17 km) This stylish restaurant offers seasonal produce prepared with a light and innovative touch. Friendly service, pleasant ambiance. The lunch special is particularly good value, book a courtyard table in summer. Closed weekends. 05 53 30 82 60 www.maisondupeliac.com
Chez le Gaulois, Sarlat (21 km) On Rue Tourny, in the old part of the town, is good for charcuterie-based light lunches and hearty snacks. Known as the ‘Ham Cave’, try a platter of thinly sliced ham with melted cheese and salad with a jug of rosé. 10E to 16E.
Le Grand Bleu, Sarlat (21 km) Fish is the speciality at this high-end restaurant near the railway station (43, Ave de la Gare). Recommended by friends who live locally as their place for ‘special occasion’ dining. Booking essential for Sunday lunch. www.legrandbleu.eu T 05 53 31 08 48
Cabanoix et Chataigne, Domme (20 km) Local, light seasonal cuisine is served with a modern twist in a historic building tucked away in the heart of Domme. There are foie gras specials, great desserts and friendly service. It can be pricey. Bookings essential, in summer, ask for a courtyard table. Closed Tuesday and Wednesday.05 53 31 07 11 www.cabanoixrestaurant.com
Restaurant L’Esplanade, Domme (20 km) There are spectacular valley views from the cliff-top dining room here, where there evening menus start at 45E; lunch at 35E. The bar is a great place to watch the sun set with a glass of champagne. Closed mid-November to early March. 05 53 28 31 41 www.esplanade-perigord.com
La Belle Etoile, La Roque-Gageac (24 km) The restaurant at this riverside hotel (two-star Logis) is in prime tourist country; it serves very good (modern/local) food in its spacious first floor restaurant or on a small shaded terrace with views over the Dordogne. Menus between 29 and 50E. 05 53 29 45 63 www.hotel-belle-etoile-dordogne.fr
Le Pont de l’Ouysse, Lacave (27 km) Highly regarded hotel-restaurant with one Michelin star. Eat in the elegant dining room or on the lovely terrace (see picture at top) shaded by plane trees and overlooking the stream and valley. Eating here is always enjoyable, and especially so in summer. The food is of a very high quality, innovative and carefully prepared, and the service attentive without being overbearing. A special occasion place. Set menus from 60E. Booking essential. T 05 65 37 87 04 www.lepontdelouysse.com
Hotel Les Glycines, Les Eyzies (44 km) This hotel has a smart restaurant (Le 1682) with menus ranging from 62 E for the evening meal. At the budget end, the bistro at the front of the building offers a good-value lunch special at 18 E.
05 53 06 97 07 www.les-glycines-dordogne.com
Le Vieux Moulin de la Beaune, Les Eyzies (43 km) Situated beside a stream that must have been enjoyed by humans since prehistoric times, the restaurant of this small hotel delivers excellent food in a delightful setting. Good value lunch menus (21E, 36E), evening menus from 58 E. Specialities include local pigeon, lamb and pork – oh, and ceps and truffles, too. Good wine list. Recommended.
La Recreation, Les Arques (40 km) This friendly restaurant (‘playtime’ in French) is in an old village schoolhouse – you can read all about it in the book From here you can’t see Paris (Michael Sanders). And although the ownership has changed since then, the restaurant remains popular with some signature dishes still on the menu, making it worth the 45 min drive from Mercadiol (via Gourdon, Salviac and Cazals). Closed Wed and Thurs, and closed Dec to April. Essential to book for popular Sunday lunch. 05 65 22 88 08 www.restaurant-traiteur-lot.com
Chez Jeanne Hotel-Restaurant, Pomarède (45 km) The subject of Mary Moody’s book and short film Lunch with Madame Murat, this family-run village restaurant serves hearty regional fare. Menus are priced at 14 and 27 euros, including house wine. A children’s menu is available at 9 euros. A 40-minute drive from Mercadiol (via Gourdon, Cazals and Frayssinet-le-Gelat). Booking is essential for Sunday lunch. 05 65 36 66 07 www.tourisme-cazals-salviac.com