Last month-end closing at work was so much painful I did not have lots of time to go out, as you might have realized from the recent lack of my review posts. When my partner in crime Kochi proposed to have a dinner out the Friday of that week, I was indeed very glad she has chosen a place in Merl, very close to where we live now.
Last time I have been to La Bergamote, it was still called Stan’s. The restaurant is located in Merl, at a very walkable distance from the city centre and in a quiet area. It has two floors, one at the level of the street and one below, with a cosy terrace, for which it was not yet the time due to the unpleasant rain.
We got there at 8ish, after having reserved during the week, and the location was quite packed, but still not noisy. The settings are those from a brasserie, with a sophisticated accent and a minimal touch. My favourite piece was the ham cutter vintage machine on the corner, next to a neon column of bottles.
After a look to the menu, we decided to go for the evening tasting, that proposes 3 courses at the astonishing price of 35 Euro. I was pretty surprised indeed to find such good deal, as I always retained the restaurant to be on the pricey side. While the “a la carte” menu in fact proposed dishes around 28 – 30 euro, for the main, the tasting menu is definitely competitive if you don’t want to splurge.
For the menu, you have two choices every course: I went for the sea bass tartare as starter and white fish with peas and chorizo for main. Kochi had the meat choice, with chicken as starter and veal with Sardinian fregola and vegetables as main. For last course, we both selected the cheese platter – and that’s the main reason because we are friends, we love cheese 🙂
As for drinks, we started with a house aperitif – an house kir, prepared with cremant and bergamot, delicious – and we continued with a bottle of Saint Aubin – again, cheer up to the friend who always selected the wine to match my course and not hers 🙂
Discover our dinner in pictures and find my general impressions afterwards.
Things I loved about La Bergamote:
- We had a high-end dinner with brasserie price tag. All dishes were very tasty and well-prepared, with a refined presentation and cared in the details. My fish dishes were very satisfactory and I liked the combination of tastes, the freshness of the raw materials and completeness of the plats in all their parts. Kochi was very happy about her starter, as she had a similar one recently in a gourmet restaurant and she noted this one was even better. Her veal meat was indeed great.
- Service was very professional and attentive. We got wine served, dishes explained in details, requested satisfied and correct timings for the dinner.
- The location is very relaxed and you don’t feel stressed by the rythme of the city centre.
Things I liked a bit less about La Bergamote:
- While the combination between the location and the tasting menu price is perfect, I would not be much convinced going to La Bergamote for a la carte full dinner, as it might get a bit too much expensive for the kind of settings – for example: tables are a bit too close for my taste.
- The only deluding dishes among ours was Kochi’s veal – as per above the meat was extremely good and well cooked, but the fregola is meant to be prepared in a soupy way and as a risotto was plain and overcooked. Same same for the vegetables, that deserved al dente cooking point and missed it very much.
In conclusion: I personally really enjoyed my dinner at La Bergamote. I would definitely suggest to visit the restaurant and go for the tasting menu if you are looking for a sophisticated dinner with a reasonable price. Perfect for a tete-a-tete or a girls gossip night.