Friday, August 08, 2014

Cassoulet Lunch in Carcassonne (France) at the L’Ostel des Troubadours

While going around town I quickly picked up the local cuisine vibe. Cassoulet is king in Carcassonne and all throughout the Languedoc region in the south of France. It is a heavy meal so to speak so I decided to have this local specialty for lunch instead.

A graphic information of Cassoulet, the Castelnaudary version. Right click and open on another window to read.

Cassoulet at L’Ostel des Troubadours
Address: 5 Rue de Violet-le-Duc in La Cite Carcassonne

French cooking is just so varied, it is a world on its own and each region has its distinct nuances that makes it very fascinating, in concept and when the food finally lands in our tongue as well. You have of course those chef-styled haute dishes that France is famous for, but in the countryside, they have hearty home-styled dishes, which are cookery handed down from one generation to another.

Seriously though, in the Languedoc region major cities such as Carcassonne, Toulouse and Castelnaudary competes who has the best cassoulet version. I would not even go there attempting to discuss who is the best if you are to ask me.

Cassoulet is a slow-cooked casserole usually containing meat such as goose, duck, pork sausages, mutton and white beans. It is cooked and served in a traditional earthenware pot. It is a rich dish and very hearty that it can truly fill you up. This for me is the perfect winter dish.

It looks like every restaurant in Carcassonne has a cassoulet version in their menu, so with that I did not have to worry as I did not really know where to eat my lunch. I didn’t bother to research ahead of time as I wanted it to be spontaneous this time and so I bumped into this kitschy convivial medieval place. I am shallow sometimes and an inviting atmosphere usually gets me excited, if not the view.

The fairytale-like hallway to the restaurant decorated with whimsical themed paintings

The interior is so medieval and so French.

The restaurant has its own stone oven and these potatoes were cooked here.

Salad with greens, cucumber, tomatoes, olives, corn and artichokes.

The water bottle is served from an empty wine bottle.

Cassoulet of the house. This was with pork sausages and duck I believe. Perhaps some mutton as well. Very good! 

Then they gave me some (individually commercially wrapped) cheeses to end the meal.

The door to the men's toilet. I did not go in of course =)

The courtyard terrace, just before entering the restaurant.

The prices here were amazingly cheap! I would rate my experience here 4.2 stars out of 5. The salad was mediocre but the cassoulet was very good. I cannot say it is the best though as I have not tasted other cassoulets.

Travel Period: November 2013
Destination: Carcassonne (Languedoc-Rossillion), France

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