Tuesday, September 19, 2023

Assignan, France

We ran across an article about Assignan a few months ago and tucked it in the file of interesting places to visit when we're in the area.  Well, we're close and we stop in.  Much of the town is part of the Chateau and Village Castigno, "a wine hotel in a wine town in a wine region in the south of France."  The rooms and restaurants of the hotel are distributed around the village, all with a focus on wine. 

We park at the edge of town and wander in.  We first spot a cute truck that we have to photograph.


Then, wandering the streets, we arrive in the center of town just in time for lunch.  We sit down at tables in the square, but are directed inside the restaurant for lunch.

Following the streets to the center ot town

The main square

The restaurant

Not knowing what to expect, we enter Le Petit Table, study the menu, and settle in for a fabulous meal, starting with a glass of the local Grâce des Anges Rosé.  Wow, it is a truly fabulous wine.

Grâce des Anges

For lunch, we start with spiced roasted cauliflower with Greek yogurt and herbs sauce, honey and citrus fruit.  We follow that with Gochujang marinated pork ribs, roasted lettuce, candied peppers and gravy sauce.   We end with one mousse au chocolat, dark chocolate chips, flower of salt and espelette pepper and one [chocolate] "floating island."




Mousse and island

What a lunch!  And, we just wandered in to see what we could find!

We walk back outside and meander through the streets back toward the parking lot and our car.

The restaurant and its street

Back through town

We pass the winery and a field with a few of the winery's old trucks, a map of the city, and, finally, the hotel front desk itself, with the rooms and restaurants spread throughout the city.



City map

The hotel

The sign that helped us figure it out

Back at the car park, we hop in our vehicle and take the A9 autoroute back to Montpellier.  It's a lot less scenic, but much faster.  As we drop our rental car at the Montpellier train station, we see that a group has taken over the ("for you to play" - a vous de jouer) piano in the station and are entertaining everyone in the concourse.

Assignan car park

For anyone to play at the train station

Our two weeks in Montpellier (with side trips to Marseille, Carcassonne, Avignon, ...) are coming to an end and tomorrow we're on a morning train to Paris for a few days in the capital.

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