Brantome is one of the prettiest and most visited towns in the Dordogne, located in the Northwest part of the Perigord Vert, about an hour and a half from Bordeaux and Cognac country near Angouleme. When you are there, you’ll want to sample some of the local cuisine, because the Perigord is renowed for its specialities of foie gras, truffles, goose, and fine wines from nearby Bordeaux and Bergerac.
There are some excellent restaurants in and around Brantome, that can provide exceptional value, but since some of the best places to eat in Brantome aren’t always the ones with the best views of the abbey, it pays to know where to eat. This article highlights some of the best places to eat in the area, but for more details and telephone numbers, check the website mentioned in the author’s box below.
Our favourites include Les Jardins, a great little restaurant just outside Brantome on the road for Angouleme, serving creative food with menus from around 23€. The service is excellent and the outdoor garden very pretty in summer. You can also try out Les Freres Charbonnel , part of the Hotel Chabrol, on the river just down from the abbey at Brantome. The food is good quality and you can get a lunch menu for about 20€ including a glass of wine. A little tip – stick to the male waiters for the best service! For a truly gastronomic experience dine at the Le Moulin de l’Abbaye. This delightful Relais & Chateaux hotel restaurant is located right on the river, opposite Brantome Abbey. A little pricey in the evening, but they do offer a 42€ lunch menu during the week, giving you the opportunity to enjoy this beautiful setting in style. Another gourmet experience is Les Saveurs, tucked away in a little back street, and serving some of the best food in Brantome. It’s ideal for a quality meal, although the prices aren’t cheap. In the summer, enjoy eating in the shady garden. If you enjoy direct river views and fresh fish, try out Au Fil de L’Eau hidden away on the river opposite the park, or for a more traditional local dining experience, try Le Coligny. This cafe/restaurant serves typical local delicacies such as the ‘Cassoulet Perigourdien’, ‘Omelette de Cepes’ (mushroom omelette), Confit de Canard (Duck leg), Foie Gras de Canard, and even ‘Escargots du Perigord’ if you are game! It has nice views of the river from its terrace, over the road from the hotel. Another place that offers local produce is Les Ondines , a great place for an exotic coffee blend, authentic artisanal ice-cream, or salads from about 13€ made using local produce. There are great views of the abbey from the riverside tables inside. Creperie l’Arlequin, in the Boulevard Coligny serves a delicious variety of crepes and icecreams, as well as nice omelettes, and has nice views of the river.
There are also some fabulous places to eat within about 25 minutes of Brantome. From famous gourmet restaurants to little cafes serving delicious ‘menu ouvriers’ for about 12€, you won’t regret trying one of these places. One of the best is the Moulin du Roc in Champagnac de Belair. Established for over 40 years, the Moulin du Roc is one of the best restaurants in the Perigord. Its setting is beautiful as well, as you can dine on the terrace next to the river. Try the lunch menu from 39€ or afternoon tea on Sunday from 25€! The Hotel de France in Saint Pardoux La Riviere is a family-run restaurant has a long standing reputation for excellence, serving original and elegant food and great value for money. From the 12.50€ daily lunch menu, to the menu gourmet for 24€, you’ll enjoy a fabulous meal that includes local delicacies such as foie gras or confit de canard, and much more. Over towards Riberac is the restaurant Saint Victor, which offers some excellent lunchtime menus for 13.50€, for a typical ‘menu ouvrier’. The owner/chef here is one of the best in the area. The price includes entree, main course, cheese, dessert and a carafe of wine! In summer, enjoy eating outdoors in the town square overlooking the Roman church. Another great menu can be enjoyed at Chez Fernand offering great value meals with a ‘menu ouvrier’ in pretty Tour Blanche, charging 11€ for a full meal including soup, entree, main, cheese and dessert but not including wine. The room is lovely too, large and decorated ‘brasserie’ style. The Moulin du Pont in Lisle offers a well-priced lunchtime menu from about 14€ and 20€ at dinner, and provides seating along the river, with a view of the weir and ancient mill. A lovely outdoor setting can be enjoyed at Les Dames du Maine near Bourdeilles, although they also have an indoor dining room. Open all year, Les Dames du Maine is a ‘restaurant paysan’ serving simple country fare but also plan a variety of special menus for the winter.
If you are yearning for a classic British meal during your stay in France, try La Charrue in Vieux Mareuil, a former 18th century posthouse famous for its good value and delicious fish and chips with mushy peas every Friday night! In the summer, they serve food outdoors on the terrace or in the garden.