Food: We go to Cognac every once in a while, if we go to England, and we usually go to the ‘Coq d’or’. However, last time wasn’t that good so mum and dad thought it was a good idea to try something new so they looked on the internet and found this place called La Maison. I was very sceptical at first;the waitors all had ties on, plus the meal I had at the Coq d’or wasn’t bad. But when they brought out the canapés, we knew they meant business. There were 3 of each of a mini croque monsieur, a butternut soup and an olive swhirl on cheese cracker (the super thick crumby kind!). We asked if there was meat in them, because I don’t eat meat, and they said there was only meat in the croque monsieurs, and you know what he did? He went away and came back with a special little vegetarian canapé for me to replace the croque monsieur ! It was so kind! It was a chopped up artickocke heart with a yellow pepper sauce, it was delicious! The butternut soup was really good too! And the third and final was slightly less good than the others, but still great! It had curry spice in which gave it a lovely flavour boost! Next, the amuse-bouche. A prawn “cappuccino” with on top of some quinoa with a tuile. At first you go eurck, because it looks like ice cream, and you expect a sweetness. But then as you readjust your expectations it’s really quite good, very interesting to say the least, the tuile was slightly nothingish, but added some crunch which is always a good thing. Round about this point they brought hot fresh crusty bread, and also two types of homemade butter. One salted, and the other one flavoured with oak barrels. OMG! It was so good and interesting!it tasted like there was vanilla in it, but not quite, and it was really bugging us not being able to pin it down, so we asked if there were any spices in it,and they said no. Just some barrel essence, and he brought us some. He said that they take some butter, melt it and put this essence in it. It was a sort of powder made from grinding up the inside of some old cognac oak barrels. Outstanding discovery! Now let’s come back to the meal! Then they brought out the starters. Mine was a trout gravlax, with a dill oil, pink peppercorn crepe, egg mayo puree, some of the yellow pepper sauce and some diced hard boiled egg. It was exactly how it should be. The egg mayo puree had some curry powder in and was just so good and pepper sauce was great, and the crepe added a little bit of wham to it, the gravlax had clearly been marinating for a few days and was delicious even though it was trout, and the dill oil brought everything together! Wow! Mum and dad had foie gras with an onion confit and pleurotes, apparently it was superb. Next the mains. I had a prawns on top of a creamy risotto. It was supposed to come with a carbonara sauce but that had lardons in so RIP. It was very good, but it was slightly under salted because it needed the lardons but all in all it was a subtile well composed dish. Dad had bream on pois cassés (basically upper class mushy peas 😍) with a sauce bordelaise. For those of you who don’t know what a sauce bordelaise is, it’s a sauce using bone marrow and Bordeaux red wine. I know. Sounds delicious. And apparantly it was, but definitely slightly over reduced. Mum had pork with a tuile and some sort of puree and sauce. It was amazing apparantly. Then the cheese. It came on a huge trolley and you could pick the cheeses you wanted. There was an amazing epoisse, and the best langres I’ve ever had! And many more! They also had cherry chutney which was superb.
Service: Great, they had a certain twinkle in their eyes!
Atmosphere: good, if a bit brightly lit.
Little bits that are nice: everything
Quirky bits: the pictures of famous characters and people, but as skulls
Toilets: great, and amazing hot pink toilet paper!
Score: 10/10 I’m gonna have to make it in leagues aren’t I? Like, have home cooking, swanky cooking, and super swanky. And have a scale from 1 to 10 in those categories! Do you agree?