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CHÉ OLIVE / LE ZINC, CREISSAN: RESTAURANT REVIEW

No, it's not Chez Olive. It is indeed Ché complete with red star and black beret. I have no idea why and I wasn't about to ask. The French are the French and not to be analyzed too closely when it comes to politics, especially these days.

Creissan is the next town over from our village of Quarante. We pass through it often and Ché Olive is right there on the main road at the entrance to town. (One of the signs still says Le Zinc. Olive says he prefers Ché Olive though.) Olive opened it a couple of years ago after leaving the Bar 40, Quarante's basic local watering hole that's undergone a bit of a renaissance lately. We hadn't heard much about Ché Olive from our usual sources for dining recommendations. So we just kept passing by. For reasons not central to this review, we decided to stop in for lunch on a mid-week in late December.

The bar is cozy, the restaurant open and bright and modern. Newly renovated and perhaps a bit sterile. We were the first in and we weren't offered a menu, though I suppose that we could have asked for one. We tend to start at a new place with the plat du jour. If a kitchen can't properly prepare the featured dish of the day, what hope is there for the rest of the menu?

So, a choice of a charcuterie plate or a salad with chick peas for a start, slow-cooked beef for the main, and a mousse for dessert. All was quite satisfactory. The charcuterie was not the typical plate of smoked ham, paté, and saucisson. Frankly, I don't know the proper names of most of what we ate. I think that there was a bit of tongue, but I could be wrong. With a very nice, crusty roll and a bit of butter, an interesting and enjoyable mix. (We didn't try the salad but it looked ample and fresh.) The beef was falling-apart tender, swimming in a light gravy enhanced by red wine, with potatoes done just firm enough. Fresh parsley for color. A substantial portion for a chilly December day. Our server refreshed our basket of rolls, necessary to sop up the gravy. The smooth, creamy mousse for dessert came with crunchies on top and a bit of red fruit stirred in.

My café créme was positively tepid, almost cool. Too bad, but there's always something...

With a demi of wine, the tab came to 33€. Good food at a good price. And when we asked to see the dinner menu, the slate that was brought over looks the same.

Ché Olive doesn't have a website or a Facebook page. No one can accuse the French of intrusive marketing. No one can accuse the French of marketing at all. Open most weekdays for lunch and starting Thursday night for dinner...I think. You'll just have to call. 06.69.95.48.03





Comments

  1. Thanks for the review; I am sure we will visit next time we are in town. I notice that he has Magret de Canard on the dinner menu. I still remember the best breast of duck that Olive prepared at the Bar de Quarante. We always enjoy your reviews and add the restaurants to our to list.

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    Replies
    1. Thanks, Tamra. Let us know the next time that you are in town.

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