Chez Canaille, Pau, France
Chez Canaille is a bistrot, pure and simple. That means copious portions, a menu that is meat-centric, heavy on charcuterie and doesnt stray far from traditional and regional specialties and a wine list of well priced bottles from lesser known appellations. In other words, no modern monkey business.
Well, maybe a little modern monkey business.
Like the fact that the menu lists the provenience of pretty much every entrecote, pied de cochon, jambon, boudin and andouillette(and sole!) they serve as well as good number of the vegetables, fruits and cheeses. Or that the wine list is heavy on wines that are organic or natural or both. Or that the person who designed the decor harbors a tongue in cheek romance for the look of old time bistros that borders on the ironic.
Favorite dishes include textbook plate of beef marrow bones finished with a drizzle of persillade (two bones, each 10″ long…the waiter actually asked “Vous avez tout fini? C’est pas possible!”).
Or a 4-bone côte de porc roasted for two and served with garlic roasted in its skin, thick cut frites and an accompanying saladier of curly endive dressed with grain mustard vinaigrette (although I think that when there are 4 bones, it is officially no longer a chop but has become a rack…this one from a porc noir de Bigorre, the black pigs whose legs are famous as the source of some of the best hams in the world).
Or a choux a la crème the size of a soft ball, filled with crème chantilly and drizzled with caramel.
Like I said, a bistrot.
Address: 3 Rue du Hedas, 64000 Pau
Phone: 05 59 27 68 65
Reservations: Yes for weekday lunch, when it is very busy