Behind the French Menu gives a tasty background to French cuisine, French dishes, how they are made and how they should be served.
Where there is a story behind a dish's creation and
that story may aid the diner's enjoyment then that will also be included. Bon appétit!
French wine bars have
different formats for offering the wines they sell, and they work hard to earn,
and keep, their reputations.Hotels’
concierges and guide books may point out wine bars that specialize in offering
wines from specific areas as well as those which are, in reality, small
restaurants.Certain wine bars offer
weekly or monthly targeted changes in their offered wines along with local
favorites.Among the many wine bars
quite a few are well known for the food they serve, some have truly excellent menus
even if they only have a few tables, and at lunch and evening hours may be
completely booked.For many popular wine
bars a reservation is required.
Wine bar offerings.
Photograph courtesy of In Praise of Sardines.
Over the last few years, more and more wine bars are emphasizing their food
offerings, they are close to or are restaurants and calling themselves a cave à manger. Whatever they call themselves even when the menu is limited the food served
in wine bars is generally excellent. In almost all cases, the price you will
pay for food in a wine bar offers a significant discount on similar dishes at a
restaurant. Certain wine bars developed from a Cavedu Vin, wine
shops, and their choice of wines can be very broad.
Wine bars offer the
opportunity to experience selection of wines, but, they are notusually the cheapest places to buy a whole
bottle. Despite that caveat wine bars are definitely the place to try a wine or wines before
buying; when visiting a wine bar try a glass of two or three of that bar’s
recommended wines; note the year and other relevant details and you may discovered
some fascinating new wines to take home. That tasting in a wine bar may also
save you from buying a whole bottle or possibly a case of a wine you do not
A Bar à Cidre sometimes called a Bar à Sidre –A bar specializing in cider.
cider bars will offer a variety of differentapple ciders, pear ciders and Pommeaus, apple
based aperitifs,along with their Calvados AOC apple brandies. In Bretagne,
Brittany,cider bars offer their local
ciders as well as their ownPommeau de
AOC and their apple brandy called Lambig.Elsewhere cider bars offer local ciders and apple brandies. In the Basque country cider bars are called siderias. For more on
the superb French ciders see my post:The Magnificent Ciders of France, all the French you Need to Know.