the other half of our 2010 christmas adventure spectacular involved driving from paris up to rouen, then passing thru deauville before settling into caen. the next day we would venture down to mont saint michel, back to caen for the d-day memorial and bayeux tapestry.
we weren’t quite hungry when we left rouen, and decided to continue onwards to our next stop: deauville. by the time we got to deauville, we were famished, and the grand hotel normandy barriere looked like as good a place as any to get a midday repast.
the restaurant inside the hotel looks like a relic from the gilded age complete with florals, carvings, professional waiters and little stools for one’s purses. the prices are rather steep as well. appetizers were on the order of US$20-$30 and main courses were US $30-$50. they even had the very famous normandy blue lobster on the menu, but once i saw the price on the menu, i decided it wasn’t worth selling a body part for, no matter how amazing it was supposed to be.
that said, the quality of the seafood we ordered was exquisite. the cured salmon tasted velvety smooth. the scallops couldn’t be fresher or more perfectly caramelised. they really know how to prepare their seafood. we ordered a bottle of wine, which i’m told paired quite well with the seafood.
post lunch, we walked around deauville a bit — mostly, i suspect to ease the alcohol off before getting back on the road (don’t worry, hubs who drove, only had one glass). there’s a large casino, some high-end shops like hermes, louis vuitton, and even a galerie lafayette (interestingly enough, this seaside town famous in part for being the site of coco chanel’s first boutique, doesn’t have a chanel store . . . we were told the original store used to be around the corner from the hotel, but no more). oh right, there’s also a nice little boardwalk lining the beach with some railings marked with the names of cinema luminaries going a few decades back. . .if you close your eyes, you might just breathe in the belle epoque.