Summer Vacation 2011 – L’Auberge – C’est Magnifique

Did you know that St. Martin earned the “gastronomic capital of the Caribbean” a few years ago after a competition among island chefs a few years ago? Well, that’s what I read a few years ago and that’s what I remember and that’s why we keep coming back (well, a major reason).

One restaurant that quickly became a favorite over the past few times we’ve visited St. Martin, is L’Auberge in the heart of Grand Case. There is one main drag in this town that boasts several establishments with fine French or French-influenced cuisine. And since we’re here during the off-season, we can easily stroll into any of them and find a table for four ready to go. During the high season, people often make reservations at their favorite restaurants before they arrive on the island.

I started with a plate of l’ escargot – garden snails cooked to perfection in a well-seasoned buttery sauce. Our girls were less than impressed, bordering on the disgusted. hahaha They said they would never try it and I couldn’t make them. Honestly though, I didn’t encourage them too much. It just meant more escargot for me. My entree was a Sauteed Chilean Sea Bass filet served on a coconut sauce and mashed sweet potatoes. The sea bass was so tender, it melted in my mouth. And the dessert d’resistance – a trio of hot, baked melted chocolate fondant, dark chocolate mouse and iced white chocolate drizzled with hibiscus coulis called “No Way Around It.” Truls said he was too full for dessert but I knew he could rally, even after he devoured his entree special of the evening, a delicious and rather large beef tenderloin.

Once again, we didn’t want the girls to eat regular kids fare of chicken nuggets and the like. The kids menu there included a choice of lightly seasoned, moist chicken breast or salmon with pasta or rice. Dessert was included as well – a scoop of creamy chocolate or vanilla or strawberry ice cream.

(By the way, we didn’t think to take photos of our dishes until after we ate them but if you click on the links above, you’ll see photos of some of them on their main web site.}

An original post to It’s Never Easy But It’s Always Fun blog.

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