Ten sits just off the market square in Uzes, one of the prettiest villages in southern France. The newly renovated space is airy and comfortable with tables of sufficient size and sufficiently spaced to provide for a pleasant dining experience. Service was cheerful, fully bilingual, and attentive without being overbearing. The food presented well to both eye and tongue. And the rate of approximately 30€ per person for a party of five included starters, mains, a dessert or two, two bottles of local wine, and coffees at the finish. Reasonable if not cheap eats.
So why am I hesitant to give an unqualified thumbs up? It took me a while to figure it out.
Uzes is a quintessentially French village in a quintessentially French region of southern France. There are those who will say that the Languedoc is just as beautiful but less crowded and less expensive than its eastern neighbors. I know. I'm one of those people. But the fact remains that for many people, villages like Uzes are their vision of France. Add to that a market day filled with eye candy and if the atmosphere was any more French we'd all be wearing berets, blue and white striped sailor shirts, and singing La Marseillaise.
Yet there we were. In southern Francce. In Uzes. On Market Day. Eating Asian fusion? Four of us started with artichokes tempura with a dipping sauce. Four of us chose sticky ribs for the main. Well prepared and inventive artichokes tempura. Sticky ribs falling off the bone and tasty. But Asian fusion. Our other choices? Ceviche, gravlax, or fish and chips were featured.
No, I'm not one of those Francophiles trying to be more French than the French. And I understand why our friends chose a restaurant serving dishes that aren't available where they live. But my admiration for French cooking is boundless. And I just felt a bit out of place at Ten.
Try Ten for yourself. As I said at the beginning, Ten offers good food at a reasonable price in a pleasant setting served by a congenial staff. Just understand that it's a restaurant in France but it's not a French restaurant.
Read more reviews and takes on French cooking HERE.