La Grand’Vigne (Bordeaux, France)

The Place

La Grand’Vigne is the 2 Michelin star restaurant of the stunning hotel ‘Les sources de Caudalie’. The domain is located in Martillac, right in Bordeaux, the heart of one of the world’s leading wine regions. The famous Château Smith Haut Lafitte is part of the domain and theses wines are of course served in the restaurant. For more information about Les Sources de Caudalie, please consult our separate article.

La Grand’Vigne is one of the three restaurants and the gastronomic flagship of Les Sources de Caudalie. The restaurant is located at the backside of the hotel’s main building and accessible via the hotel reception. Theinterior is perfectly integrated into the style of the domain, where tranquillity and nature are very important. Spacious, round tables are combined with traditional French chairs and the big windows offers beautiful views on the surrounding lake and vineyards.

Set in an 18th century glasshouse, with an authentic fireplace, the restaurant is classic but sophisticated, light and relaxing at the same time. When weather permits, the small terrace in front of the restaurant is the perfect place to enjoy an aperitif, coffee, or even the whole meal lakeside.

The Chef

Executive Chef Nicolas Masse leads a driven and passionate team. The chef gained experience at several restaurant in Europe, like The Landmark and the Kingston Lodge in London, and the Beaufort in Luxembourg. He returned to France in 2002 to work in the kitchen of the Rosenwoord restaurant at Grand Hotel in Saint-Jean-de-Luz. In 2009 he accepted the offer the start at La Grand’Vigne and quickly transformed the restaurant into one of the best of the region.

The Food

Nicolas Masse has an eye for the very best seasonal ingredients and transforms them into delicate and traditional dishes. Whether it is local Aquitaine caviar, giant sea bass from ‘La Cotinière’, cèpes from Médoc, or sole from Arcachon – only the best is good enough. The chef maintains close relationships with local fishermen, gardeners and other producers, who ensure him the best of their produce. Balance is key in his preparations and the chef highlights the intrinsic flavour of each ingredient on the plate. We visited the restaurant in February 2017 and enjoyed the following menu:

Canapé oyster from Arcachon with cucumber mousse

Crispy & hot Squid ball with inkt squid

Beef carpaccio with seaweed

Tartare of langoustine with cucumber, a cucumber jelly, ginger and yuzu, and topped with French caviar

Crispy egg, parsley, spinach and chicken stock

Roasted Seabass with cantharelles, lardo di colonata, butternut and smoked emulsion.

Pigeon roasted on the bone, glazed pigeon leg, artichoke with pigeon inner parts, jus of pigeon stock and cardamom.

Hazelnut cake, praline mousse, hazelnut & chocolate

Mignardises on the terrace

Located amid some of the world’s best vineyards, it should come as no surprise that wines are extremely important here. Aurélien Farouil is the head sommelier and manages the beautifully stocked cellar and the wine menu. For the real connoisseurs, the ‘Sélection d’exception’ is the best choice. With wines like the Krug Grande Cuvée, Château Smith Haute Lafitte Blanc 2010, and the Château Lafite Rotschild 1998, you know what to expect. Pierre Couturier, the restaurant manager, leads the dining room in style and with discretion.

The “Belgian Taste Buds” Experience

Looking for the ultimate ‘wine & dine’ experience? Look no further. Together with a stay in one of the beautiful rooms of ‘Les sources de Caudalie’, and a visit to Château Smith Haut Lafitte, a visit to La Grand’Vigne really is just that. Executive Chef Nicolas Masse presents a balanced cuisine which highlights the intrinsic flavour of each ingredient on the plate. Pure, elegant, but full of flavour.

Belgian Taste Buds:

  • Food Buds 8.5/10
  • Wine Pairing Buds 9/10
  • Price/Quality Buds 8/10
  • Service Buds 8.5/10
  • Experience Buds 8.5/10

La Grand’Vigne
Chemin de Smith Haut Lafitte
33650 Bordeaux-Martillac
Phone: +33 5 57 83 83 83

Pictures in this article were made with the Fujifilm X-T2 Camera, our favourite compact, lightweight and robust camera with endless creative possibilities. Used lenses: XF 35mm 1.4 R for food shots, and XF 10-24 mm F4 R OIS for interior and outdoor pictures.

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