Guide to the Loire regions

Val du Loir

The Vineyards of Jasnières, Coteaux du Loir and the Vendômois


Eating, Drinking and Sleeping

Exploring Vendôme and the Coteaux du Loir

Vendôme to Montoire-sur-le-Loir



Restaurant with rooms – Auberge de la Madeleine
6 place Madeleine
T: +33 2 54 77 20 79
F: +33 2 54 80 00 02
Situated in the heart of the old town, this restaurant is on a tree lined square opposite the church of the same name. The menu features local specialties and is quite rustic. The eight rooms above are small and very basic and not particularly recommended.
(Last stayed: 08/08)

Hotel-Restaurant - Le Saint-Georges
14 rue Poterie
T: +33 2 54 67 42 10
T: +33 2 54 67 42 20
Well sited in the main thoroughfare of the old town. The hotel offers modern, updated self catering apartments with kitchenettes, but is otherwise quite basic. It’s a suitable place to stop on business, but not particularly recommended for its homely comforts. The restaurant below doubles up as a cocktail bar.
(Last stayed: 12/08)

Hotel - Le Vendôme
15 Fg Chartain
T: +33 2 54 77 02 88
T: +33 2 54 73 90 71
Just on the outer ring road, this small hotel is about a five minute walk into the centre of town. 

Hotel-Restaurant - Le Capricorne
8 Boulevard de Tremault
T: + 33 2 54 80 27 00
F: + 33 2 54 77 30 63
This Logis de France is situated directly opposite the SNCF station (as opposed to the Gare TGV which is just out of the town) and is an old commercial hotel. I haven’t stayed or eaten here, but from the outside it doesn’t look too promising.

Restaurant - Le Paris Grill
Jean-Marc and Betty Ligot

1 rue Darreau
T: + 33 2 54 77 02 71
F: + 33 2 54 73 17 71
Something of a walk out of town, this restaurant is located close to the old SNCF railway station. It’s large and airy and serves typical bistro fare, such as steak tartar and snails. The house specialty is Feuillete, a puff pastry case with a variety of fillings. There is a small wine list featuring a few growers from the Vendômois and the Coteaux du Loir. Whilst it may be remote and away from the old town, it is worth seeking out. Inexpensive.
(Last dined: 08/08)

Restaurant – Moulin du Loir
M. Dias
21-23 Rue du Change
T: + 33 2 54 67 13 51
A light, airy restaurant full of pastel colours, situated just off the main pedestrian street that runs the centre of the town. It sits astride a mill race that feeds the old roue. The food is French bistro classics with no surprises, but the quality is acceptable if not inspiring. There is a short wine list.
(Last dined: 12/08)

Restaurant – Le Terre á TR
14 Rue du Maréchal de Rochambeau
T: + 33 2 54 89 09 09
F: + 33 2 54 77 84 92
The ‘TR’ in question here is one Tony Renaudin. His restaurant is situated in a tufa cave on the outskirts of the town; about a 15 minutes walk from the centre. Despite the ancient location, the décor is modern as is the trendy Buddha Bar music. There is a short but well chosen wine list, with the wines from the Vendômois concentrated on those of Jean Brazilier and Pascal Colin, and most are available by the glass. As for the food - well this is a classic example of too much attention to the presentation of dishes and not enough to substance. The fad of the ubiquitous foam and froth damns the style of the food to be already outdated, and it has certainly not been perfected. It’s a great venue for a restaurant, however. Let’s see if he’s still around on my next visit.
(Last dined: 12/08)


Restaurant – Hotel –du Pont
T: + 33 2 54 72 80 62
F: + 33 2 54 72 70 95
A modest looking eatery in the centre of the village. Closed on Mondays, which is the reason why I haven’t eaten here.


Lavoir at Lavardin

Restaurant – Le Relais d’Antan
Isabelle and Paul van Gessel
6 Place du Capitaine du Vigneau
T: +33 2 54 86 61 33
A pretty looking auberge found just alongside the old pack horse bridge in this tiny ‘Most Beautiful’ village. The menu looks serious, but unfortunately they close of Monday and Tuesday and my visits through the region have yet to coincide with their opening. I look forward to dining here one day.

Restaurant – Le Caveau
Monique Houdret
10 Rue de Vaux Boyers
T: + 33 2 54 85 31 11
P: + 33 6 82 23 33 00
A great little find: situated in a cave cut into the tufa below the ruined medieval fortress. In winter, expect to be welcomed by a roaring fire with its chimney channeled up through the rock and a hearty home cooked lunch – served with a slightly piqué carafe of gros rouge. Inexpensive and recommended. (Last dined : 12/08)

Le Caveau


Restaurant - Le Paix
10 Place Clemenceau
T: + 33 2 54 85 10 48
Montoire is a small town central for visiting vignerons from both the Coteaux du Vendômois and the Coteaux du Loir. In fact, Françoise Martelliere, who has operated this modest bar cum eatery on the main square for nigh on thirty years, comes from a family of vignerons. The food is rustic and based on the more frugal cuts of pork, her specialty being Jambon Ronsard. Wines are served by the glass, carafe and bottle, and all come from the Martellière domaine.
(Last dined: 08/08)

Between Montoire-sur-le-Loire and Château-du-Loir


Gîte - Chambres d’hôte –Château de la Volonière
M. Becquelin
49 rue Principale
T: + 33 2 43 79 68 16
F: + 33 2 43 79 68 18
Five rooms in an old manor. The chapel is now the dining room. I haven’t stayed here, but it looks impressive from the exterior.

La Possonnière

Hotel - Restaurant – Auberge du Poète
6 Rue Pasteur
La Possonière
T: + 33 2 54 73 55 96
A country hotel with modest and clean rooms, and offering regional cooking – or so I am told.


Chambre d’Hôte –l’Escalier Saint-Gabriel
T: +33 2 54 72 50 34
A troglodyte bed and breakfast.

Chambre d’Hôte – L’Eperon
T: + 33 2 54 72 55 68
Another troglodyte bed and breakfast.

Pont de Bray

Restaurant – Le Petit Luc
3 Rue de Braye
Pont de Braye/Lavenay
T: + 33 2 43 44 45 55
F: + 33 2 43 44 61 35
Equidistant between Montoire and La Chartre-sur-le-Loir is this casual little restaurant where you can eat by the fire in winter and on the terrace in summer. Closed all day Monday. I haven’t eaten here, but it was recommended within the region.

La Chartre-sur-le-Loir  

Hotel – Restaurant – de France and Le Relais Ronsard
20 Place de la République
La Chartre-sur-le-Loir
Tel: + 33 2 43 44 40 16
Fax: + 33 2 43 79 62 20
Created in 1900, Sylvia and Francis Pasteau are now the fourth generation to run this 24 bedroomed hotel on the main square in the centre of La Chartre. On the ground floor there is a bar on one side of the reception that also serves a Menu du Jour, whilst a more serious and traditional 150 cover restaurant – Le Relais Ronsard – is situated on the other. I have never stayed here, so cannot comment on the quality of the rooms. The main restaurant, whilst is brightly lit looks a bit dated but has some regional charm. The first page on the extensive menu has the chef highlighting his local suppliers, including Joël Gigou, whose wines are the sole representative of the Jasnières and Coteaux du Loir appellations on their limited wine list. The seasonal winter menu was full of rib-warming dishes based on offal and game. Closed Sunday night and all day Monday. The food here is good, but not exceptional.
(Last dined: 12/08)

Hôtel de France

Restaurant-Bar á Vin - Le Jasnières
8 Place de la République
Le Chartre-sur-Le-Loir
T: +33 2 43 44 40 44
A little bar in the main square of La Chartre-sur-le-Loir owned and operated by Catherine Lassuie and her family. It’s an ideal place to find refuge for a mid morning coffee. There is also a good representation of local grower wines served, by the glass, including some of the smaller and more obscure growers, alongside a plate of rillettes. You can also acquire a selection of old vintages from the small retail selection at the front of the shop.

Le Jasnières

Restaurant - Auberge Saint-Nicolas
2 Place Mauclerc
La Chartre-sur-le-Loir
Tél: + 33
Fax: + 33
Pepée and Jean-Claude Beranger have run this old auberge on the road out to Marçon since 1988. The entrance leads to the rough looking café which during the day attracts the local workforce who stand around the bar in their blue overalls. On the wall, almost out of view is a copy of an old vineyard map that indicates the vineyards along the Loir during the reign of Louis XIV. A separate door leads through to the dining room (where I have yet to dine). At the rear there is a garden that backs onto the Loir with rights for fishing.

Gîte - Chambres d’Hôtes – Le Grand Moulin
Marie-Danièle Millet-Lecourt
8 Rue de Syke
La Chartre-sur-le-Loir
T: + 33 2 43 44 65 78
P: + 33 6 85 56 30 45
Le Grand Moulin is a charming 18th Century mill in the centre of the town and dates from the First Empire, its English waterwheel being installed sometime during the 1820s. The mill was in continual service, helping to grind wheat for the town’s inhabitants, until it closed in 1972. It was bought in 2005 by the delightful Marie-Danielle, who exchanged it for her Paris apartment, and has been sympathetically restoring it ever since. In summer breakfast is served on the terrace overlooking the mill race. It comes very highly recommended.
(Last stayed: 12/08)

Le Grand Moulin

Gîte – Joël Gigou
4 Rue des Caves
La Chartre-sur-le-Loir
Tel: + 33 2 43 44 48 72
This modest Vigneron offers two bedroomed accommodation at his tasting room just on the edge of the town.


Café-Restaurant - Chez Miton
15 place de l'Église
T: + 33 2 43 44 62 62
F: + 33 2 43 44 25 05
Chahaignes, one of the most important of the Loir ’s wine villages, is an unlikely location to find a place like Chez Miton. Motorsport enthusiast Remy Roquet runs the front of house whilst his wife, Naoko, takes control of the kitchen and offers Asian dishes alongside French bistro classics. A Salade de Gesiers and Joue de Porc aux Epices were fantastic, with the latter illustrating Naoko’s ability to fuse the traditional with the oriental. The café and restaurant are in two separate rooms, with a permanent exhibition from local artists in the latter. You will find an excellent selection from both the Côteaux du Loir and Jasnières served by the glass, carafe and bottle. Open for lunch everyday except for Saturday. Dinner is served on Friday evenings only. Inexpensive and very highly recommended.
(Last dined: 12/08)

Chez Miton

Retail Opportunity - La Ferme de la Malvoyère
T: + 33 2 43 44 46 19
F: + 33 2 43 44 91 39
Christophe and Pierre Bouin raise poultry, pork and lamb on their farm situated on the road between Chahaignes and Lhomme. The farm shop is worth seeking out as it is full of their artisan charcuterie, foie gras and confits. In addition, they also own vines in Rasné, the most celebrated slope in the Coteaux du Loir and they make their wine in a separate cellar in the village (see their grower profile for more details). Vintages back to the early 1990s are available for purchase in the farm store. The shop is closed Sunday afternoon and Wednesday. They also work several local markets. 

Restaurant – L’Hermitière
Guy and Katia Podevin
Les Sources de l’Hermitière
T: + 33 2 43 44 84 45
L’Hermitière is situated in an idyllic wooded glade some 10 kilometres north of Chahaignes on the edge of the Bercé forest. The building looks like an old hunting lodge and was restored by the Guy and Katia Podevin in 2000. Along with a private dining room, the main dining room is built around an old tree trunk, and the bar counter has been crafted out of a huge single slab of oak. The Podevin’s cooking is centred on ingredients that are close at hand; mushrooms, game and chestnuts feature extensively, and are crafted into traditional Sarthoise dishes - on which subject they have published two cookery books. The food here is confident and refined, although the service by the young and inexperienced staff could be improved. The wine list covers all the main growers from the region, but sadly only lists current releases and even then is not kept updated. Recommended.
(Last dined 12/08)


Bar-Restaurant – La Renaissance
12 Rue du Val du Loir
T: + 33 2 43 44 00 52
The local village bar found opposite the church. There is a simple restaurant serving a menu du jour.



Bar-Restaurant – du Boeuf
21 Place de l’Eglise
T: + 33 2 43 44 13 12
F: + 33 2 43 44 54 75
Christiane Bonnisseau has been serving her native Creole cuisine – she is originally from Martinique – at the Restaurant du Boeuf for the past 20 years. This run down bar and restaurant can be found in the village square. The food is home cooked, including the spicy boudin noir, and is a little too rustic even for my peasant taste.

Hôtel du Boeuf

Beyond Château-du-Loir

La Flèche

Hotel – Le Relais Cicero
18 Boulevard d’Alger
La Flèche
T : + 33 2 43 94 14 14
F : + 33 2 43 45 98 96

Pascale Chérel runs this charming 17th Century former convent, set back off the road in a quiet backwater of the town. The 21 rooms are all individually decorated and some may be a tad small but are full of character, with classic dark wood paneling, toile de Jouy themed fabric and oak beams. There are also a couple of attractive salons in which to relax and have a drink, plus an attractive garden. Recommended. 
(Last stayed 12/08)

Restaurant – Le Moulin des Quatres Saisons
Rue Gallieni
La Flèche
T : + 33 2 43 45 12 12
F : + 33 2 43 45 10 31

The restaurant is sited in an attractive 17th century watermill on an island in the Loir basin. The décor has a distinct Tyrolean feel, not surprisingly, as Karoline Constantin is an Austrian native. The menu also reflects her origins with a few traditional touches, such as pumpkin seeds served with the cheese. Husband Camille runs the kitchen and the food here is confident and worthy. There is a great tome of a wine list which covers both the Loir (e) and beyond, with listings from the great and the good of the Wachau – including FX Pichler and Knoll - which Karoline ships herself. Le Moulin des Quatres Saisons offers one of the best tables in the wider Loire valley and comes very highly recommended.
(Last dined 12/08)



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