Like much of France, the Midi-Pyrénées is an area that’s ripe for exploration if you want to tickle and tantalise your tastebuds. There’s endless fields and farmland where top-quality produce is grown and produced, Michelin-starred restaurants in rustic vineyards and cultural centres like Toulouse and Cahors and tantalising markets where you can pick up ingredients for your own French feast. Our range of luxury villas and chateaux in the Midi-Pyrénées provide a perfect base for you, your family and friends to take in some of the culinary wonders the region has on offer, and to make things even easier we’ve listed the best foodie experiences in the Midi-Pyrénées that you can find. Bon appetit!
1. En Marge, Aureville
Lovely En Marge is situated in a converted 19th-century farmhouse around a 15-minute drive from the hustle and bustle of Toulouse. Not only has it earned Michelin approval (one star), but it also seems to win the adoration of almost every person that dines there. Go for the tasting menu and leave yourself in the trustworthy hands of chef Frank Renimel – that way, you’ll get to taste a variety of his latest seasonal culinary creations.
Price Range: £££
Location: 1204 Route de Lacroix Falgarde, Lieu dit Birol, 31320 Aureville
Bookings: Online at www.restaurantenmarge.com
En Marge, Aureville
2.La Marché Victor Hugo, Toulouse
Few places in Toulouse will give you a better sense of city life than at this bustling covered market, which has been on the go since 1896. You’ll find absolutely everything you could ever want for your villa kitchen, from a crumbling hunk of Roquefort cheese to a half-dozen escargot to the famous Toulouse sausage. Don’t leave without picking up a few croquants – these almond biscuits are Toulouse’s signature sweet.
Price Range: ££
Location: Place Victor Hugo, 31000 Toulouse, France
Bookings: Call +33 6 25 39 21 37
3. Le Caillau, Vire-sur-Lot
This family-run restaurant operates from a renovated 300-year-old farmhouse, set prettily amid the Cahors vineyards. The tasty and honest food skews seasonal using vegetables that are plucked straight from its very own kitchen garden. Menus change seasonally, but may include the likes of game terrine and/or roast guinea fowl with bubble and squeak mash. Even if you don’t come for dinner, it’s worth stopping by in the afternoon for a pick-me-up coffee, cake and pottery painting session. These take place in the café and pottery atelier.
Price Range: £
Location: Le Caillau, 46700 Vire-sur-Lot, France
Bookings: Call +33 5 65 23 78 04
4. Michel Sarran, Toulouse
The Toulouse eatery sets the standard for all other fine-dining establishments in the city. Nabbing a table here can be difficult and will require a little forward-planning, but if you can get a reservation, don’t pass it up. Chef Michel Sarran’s exquisite Mediterranean-influenced menu marks a departure from the heartier French fare common in the region – his innovative food is a knockout. Add the impeccable service to the mix and you’ve got special-occasion dining at its best.
Price Range: ££
Location: 21 Boulevard Armand Duportal, 31000 Toulouse, France
Bookings: Online at Michel Sarran or call +33 5 61 12 32 32
5. Ferme Campagnolle, Laloubère
When it comes to bread, the French have always had the upper hand: their crusts seem a little crustier, their loaves a little more airy. If you’re after a warm, fresh-from-the-oven loaf in the Midi-Pyrénées, head south to Laloubère (about a 25-minute drive north of Lourdes) where you can pick up preservative free, farm-baked bread from Ferme Campagnolle. Their tasty loaves don’t last long so it’s worth getting their soon after opening to make sure there are some left.
Price Range: ££
Location: 34 Rue de l’Agriculture, 65310 Laloubère, France
Bookings: Call +33 6 52 68 55 10
6. Restaurant Angkor, Rodez
If you need to give your gut a break from all that rich foie gras and smelly cheese, Restaurant Angkor can help. The menu at this casual family-run establishment lists various Southeast Asian and Chinese dishes, such as Chinese noodle soup, Vietnamese spring rolls and numerous sautéed stir-fry-style dishes. All are freshly prepared and make a welcome change for fatigued taste buds.
Price Range: £
Location: 12 Boulevard François Fabié, 12000 Rodez, France
Bookings: Call+33 5 65 68 82 05
7. A la Montanha, Les Cabannes
Carnivores will rejoice at this unpretentious, high-quality restaurant where beef is given a starring role. And it’s not just any beef either; the meat served here is all sourced locally from Gascon cows who roam the pastures of the nearby Pyrenees Mountains. Look out for the contemporary metal sculpture of a cow outside the restaurant – yet another indication of the meaty goodness that is to come inside.
Location: 3 Place des Platanes, 09310 Les Cabannes, France
Bookings: Call +33 5 34 09 09 09 or email email@example.com
8. L’Allée des Vignes, Cajarc
Set in a former presbytery, this simple restaurant has bags of character and charm. Diners who eat here have options: go for a weekday lunch to taste the ‘bistronomique’ menu, comprised of casual traditional French fare, such as roasted duck breast with orange, for instance. If the lunch menu isn’t doing it for you, opt for the high-brow gastronomic dinner option instead, where the more innovative dishes merge local and global influences. With the gastronomic menu, you’re also given the choice to select the size of each dish you order – allowing you to pick from tasting, starter or main-sized portions.
Location: 32 Boulevard du Tour de ville, 46160 Cajarc, France
Bookings: Call +33 5 65 11 61 87
9. Vin Vigne Voyages, various locations
If you’re coming to the Midi-Pyrénées but aren’t familiar with the local wines, you’ve got two choices: bluffing or taking an educational tour with Vin Vigne Voyages. You can focus your attentions on the black wines of the Cahors region (so-called because of the inky colour of the reds) as well as the highly desired black truffles. Alternatively, you might spend an afternoon among the vineyards of Gaillac, where you’ll get to learn about the varietals of the region during two vineyard visits and tastings.
Price Range: £££
Location: 11 Rue Héliot, 31000 Toulouse, France
Bookings: Call +33 5 82 75 11 15
10 . Le Gindreau, Saint-Médard
This Michelin-starred restaurant is set in an elegantly outfitted schoolhouse that once served the children of the medieval village of Saint-Médard. In the kitchen is virtuoso Pascal Bardet who, prior to coming here, was Chef de Cuisine at Alain Ducasse’s legendary Louis XV in Monaco and at La Passagère in the Hôtel Belles Rives in Juan-les-Pins – this should give you an indication of the level of cooking you can expect. If the weather is playing ball, request a table outside on the attractive terrace, which is flanked by the chestnut trees of the old schoolyard.
Price Range: ££
Location: Le Bourg, 46150 Saint-Médard, France
Bookings: Call +33 5 65 36 22 27
If you want to find the ideal villa in the Midi-Pyrénées, just get in touch with our concierge team! If you let them know exactly what you’re looking for, they can draw up a shortlist of properties and help you book. Looking for more holiday and travel inspiration? Our blog has got some great articles no matter where you’re travelling, but if you’re thinking of heading to the Midi-Pyrénées you might want to check out our 10 quirkiest chateaux in the South of France, our top picks if you want a wine tasting holiday or even our best venues for a French destination wedding if you’re in a romantic sort of mood.
Leave a Reply