For the past three days I’ve been working at a French company in Champs-sur-Marne, a Parisian suburb. Every day we’ve gone for lunch at a local restaurant, and it’s been a pleasant experience every time.
Today we went to quite a special place, Chez l’ Savoyard in the historical centre of Champs-sur-Marne.
At first I thought it was just a traditional little pub and restaurant.
However, when the owner spotted me, he shouted “Il est nouveau!” and rushed over to shake my hand, saying “Mon fils s’appelle Thomas aussi.” (He quickly forgot, though, and started calling me l’anglais instead!!!)
We then sat down at a table, and one of my temporary colleagues went into the kitchen to find out what was on the menu, while one of the others fetched a bottle of white wine in the bar and grabbed a bottle of crème de cassis from another table.
There were four starters to choose from – eggs mayonnaise, herring salad, charcuterie and salad Parisienne – but there was only one main course on offer: cuisse de canard.
We didn’t have to cook the food ourselves, but the starters were served by another customer who happened to be near the kitchen at that time.
The food was lovely, though – the mayonnaise was homemade, very runny and mustardy, and the duck leg was perfectly cooked.
After each course, we carried the dirty dishes back to the kitchen ourselves.
Because it was my first time there, the owner made us a special dessert – some sort of ice cream with meringue served together with a slice of custard pie. To show that I had sussed the system, I carried our dirty plates back to the kitchen.
We paid €12.50 (£10.37) each. Funnily enough, we didn’t have to work the till ourselves.
Don’t miss Chez l’ Savoyard next time you’re in Champs-sur-Marne!