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Loire Valley restaurants

The Loire River has shaped both the landscape and the cuisine of the region. River fish, notably sandre (pike perch) and freshwater eel, are particular treats. Other fine local delights include asparagus in spring, strawberries in summer, and wild mushrooms and game (hare, venison, wild boar, partridge) in autumn and winter, as well as button and oyster mushrooms, which are cultivated in dank caves around Saumur. Also be sure to try the region's superb goat cheeses, from Selles-sur-Cher, Ste. Maure de Touraine, Valencay, and Crottins de Chavignol. In addition to classic dishes like coq au Chinon, fish in beurre blanc, foie gras, game pâtés, and pigeon, you'll also find modern renditions of the repertoire crafted by chefs who are lightening sauces, adding exotic spices, or rediscovering légumes oubliés ("forgotten vegetables"), such as old varieties of tomatoes, parsnips, or beets. Restaurants range from grand château establishments to bustling brasseries serving steaks and salads to simple village bistros. In addition to the restaurants listed here, the establishments of chefs who belong to the association Touraine Gourmande ( tend to be worth a visit.

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Brasserie de l'Univers, Tours

This big, beautiful Belle Époque restaurant dates to 1896 and has an original stained-glass domed ceiling and an outdoor terrace. It's widely...more

Editors' Pick
Au Rendez-Vous des Pêcheurs, Blois

Adventurous chef Christophe Cosme has brought the gastronomic bistro trend from its Paris roots to the countryside. This former bar and grocery, located a block...more

Editors' Pick
Auberge du XIIe Siècle, Saché

This ancient half-timbered inn, where Balzac often used to come for drinks, is now a dynamic gastronomic destination. The cooking is judiciously contemporary....more

Editors' Pick
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Information may have changed since date of publication. Please confirm details with individual establishments before planning your trip.



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