Service is attentive and über polite. Food is lovely. Dessert superb. Wine flowing and the view, adjacent to the Palais des Papes is both gothic and beautiful. One complaint I see here here shows a relentless pattern and fuss over minutiae. Boo.. If you are happy before you arrive you won't waste time about why the last sip of wine goes in another glass. Really? Order another glass .
I cannot believe this restaurant has been awarded a Michelin star. Appalling service -- capped off by the server emptying the wine bottle into my husband's glass despite mine having no wine it and his having about a quarter of a glass. With the server still there, I reached over and poured half of my husband's glass of wine into my glass. No response from the server -- flat-liner. I wrote an email (in French no less) to the restaurant to complain about the server and didn't hear a word back from them (despite my having communicated with them in French via email to make the initial reservation).
The food was fine, but unremarkable. Couldn't even tell you what we had.
Avignon, itself, is a dirty town -- among my least favorites (although there are a few cool architectural sites). When we visit this area again, we'll stay in a smaller town. We stayed at a place in the heart of Avignon (behind the Palais du Papes) called La Mirande -- it is a former cardinal's residence and while it's been refurbished at some point, we found it to be a bit run down and musty.
If you want to see the Palais du Papes and other religious sites, I'd suggest seeing Avignon as a day trip and skipping dinner at Christian Etienne.
Amazing food and wine experience at Christian Etienne on a September lunch. We had the menu tomato and it was such a great dinning experience!! The use of color, the freshness of ingredients and the chef's cooking techniques made the food dance on its own plate. It was a very memorable meal!! Thank you Chef Christian Etienne!!
Unless you are rich, this is to be regarded as a very special treat - mortgage required. The Michelin starred restaurant is next to the Palais des Papes, with a cool awning-covered 1st floor terrace, bedecked with potted herbs. We had lunch (evenings were fully booked). There is a famous 'Tomato Menu' in the summer, at 70 euros, so we had that. Delicious amuse bouche, followed by seven impeccable courses, each small and light, but tasty and perfectly executed and presented. All sorts of tomatoes were used - beef, yellow, zebra, etc, but it wasn't entirely vegetarian. There was tomato cappucino to start, a fillet of plaice with tuna broth, cannelloni made with aubergine (not pasta) filled with lamb, incredible goat cheese mousse with green tomato chutney, and so on. Even the pudding was tomato - an amazing confection of sun dried tomato grissini with basil and tomato sorbet, and mustard! Midway through, the great man came out to tour the tables for his accolades. I succumbed to the easy way out on wine, and had a glass selected by the sommelier with each course, including a superb rose with pudding. Service was impeccable without being unduly stuffy, overseen by a maitre d' who earns his money. This was a meal to remember all your life, as was the bill - a hair curling 180 euros. Start saving...or at least go for the bargain 31 euro lunch menu.
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