Archive for July 15th, 2020

July 15, 2020

Vitré gourmand!

Well here let me tell you, we love to travel… and eating good food/drinks is our passion. We go on road warrior trips to try the very best of France from star Michelin to mom and pop places all over. Over the years, we preferred the cozy small mom and pop restaurants that brings the best of the French cuisine at prices for the whole family.

I have written on Vitré in my blog several times of course; but feel left these wonderful eating places a very small space and they deserve more. Especially when one of them has change name and owner. Let me tell you a bit about Vitré gourmand in Ille et Vilaine dept 35 of my beautiful Bretagne.

We had our lunch at Le Chêne Vert, 2 pl du Général de Gaulle diagonilly across the train station of Vitré, great tagliatelle with scallops mushrooms and all others with porto rouge as apéro,grimbergen beers, coffee expresso for less than 16€ a bargain!


This is an update that prompted this post as Le Chêne Vert (green holm oak) has change owner and name.  It was back in June 2019,(wow time flies), the new owner is Bruno Desbois  ,originally from Morbihan (ah we have to come back) took over the restaurant and name change to L’Odorico. The new resto is open Tuesday to Sunday, from 7h30 to 01h on weekdays. Open from 8h30 to 01h on Saturday and Sunday from 8h30 to 20h. Telephone contact:+33 (0) 2 99 96 80 59 no webpage yet.. menu carte from about 20€. Lunch menu: 13.80€ (starter + main course + dessert). 9.50€: dish of the day.

What they are saying about the new L’Odorico : the Le Chêne Vert, a vitreous institution located opposite the train station, gives way to a whole new, more cozy and trendy decor, but don’t forget to pay homage to the Art Deco style and the mosaics that made it famous with a new name that sounds right : Odorico, named after the famous Rennes mosaic artist. The terrace creates a gateway between the outside and the inside with these superb bar tables in exotic velvet fabric that can also be found inside. The decor has been carefully thought out and the result is very successful. More on their Facebook page here: Facebook page of the L’!Odorico resto Vitré

We had some chocolate sticks filled with fruits in chocolaterie Le Derf  21 Rue Duguesclin. The Meilleur Ouvrier de France, Bruno Le Derf has been rewarded for his undeniable qualities as a chocolate maker but also as a confectioner! He opened its first stores in June 2012. All the pralines are homemade, in its laboratory in Vitré, on the basis of raw dried fruit. Previously caramelized, crushed or mixed, almonds, hazelnuts, pine nuts,etc are mixed with chocolate to obtain pralines with a deliciously flaky, crisp or soft texture. On a base of almonds, the macarons have the particularity that they are accompanied by a filling sometimes similar to that of his chocolate candies (pralines, ganaches or molds).They have several shops and one nearer me in Vannes, 10 place de la Poissonnerie by the fish market; but they are delicious anywhere. More on their site here: Bruno Le Derf chocolatier Vitre


We got our baguettes, pastries in double chocolat and strawberry caramels, éclairs, tarte à poires, etc to take home at La Petite Marquise , 7 rue Paris, Vitré. You can buy regional pastries, a large quantity of bread, organic bread and confectionery. Take a look at their Christmas or Easter chocolates, ready-made pieces and savory or sweet petit fours. Taste also the sandwiches and savory pies. Parking on site for customers. More on their Facebook page here: Facebook page of La Petite Marquise Vitre


There ,now I feel better, to have these wonderful eateries in my blog fully shown and contacts for those traveling gourmand and locals as well.  Vitré is nice with a wonderful castle and great monuments ,some of which already posted in my blog. However, the food is sublime!!! Oh yes I need to lose weight …….::)

Hope you enjoy the little gastronomic tour of Vitré, and do visit this wonderful town of my Bretagne.

And remember,happy travels, good health, and many cheers to all!!!

July 15, 2020

Redon, and the waterways!

And here I am in sunny Morbihan , the beaches are full ,at some risks and I am again nostalgic of my trips. I have not realise how much I have written in my blog and so much left out from those visits!! This is the time to remedy that, and will take you to Redon, a nice waterway town in the Ille et Vilaine dept 35 of my Bretagne.

Redon is the sub-prefecture of the Ille-et-Vilaine department 35 in the region of Bretagne. Redon is the center of the community Redon Agglomeration gathering municipalities from 3 bordering departments (Ille-et-Vilaine 35, Morbihan 56, and Loire-Atlantique 44). It is located north of the confluence of the Oust and Vilaine rivers which runs along the city. It is 60 km from Rennes, 50 km from Vannes and 60 km from Nantes. The Canal Nantes-Brest runs along the Oust river then crosses the center of the town. The neighboring towns are: in Ille-et-Vilaine(35): Bains-sur-Oust; and Sainte Marie ; in Morbihan(56): Saint-Perreux; Saint-Jean-la-Poterie; and Rieux; and in the Loire-Atlantique (44) : Saint-Nicolas-de-Redon.


We live less than 2 hrs from Redon, so we took the D779 over to the D135 past Saint Avé to hook up with the D775 at Saint Nolff and straight to Redon avoiding all N national roads. Easy leasure ride and plenty of parking by the Quai Surcouf in Redon!

I have written on Redon before and plenty on history ,however, like to repeat this one as a historical anecdote I like: On June 8, 1918, 1,600 American soldiers from the 155th artillery brigade disembarked in Redon overnight. There will be a total of 7,000 distributed between Avessac, Saint-Nicolas-de-Redon and Redon. Everything was planned in September 1916 (housing, distribution …). The American army chose Redon to train part of its troops in the handling of the French cannon. You saw in particular the 75 guns delivered to the sub-prefecture. During WWII, the Nazis army arrived in Redon on June 21, 1940. The city was liberated by the American army on August 4, 1944.

This is the water heavy boat crazy and leisure inland living town of Redon in South Brittany, the still land of the Gallo language not Breton but it can be heard too. Redon is placed at the heart of the western waterways and near the ocean with, in particular, a sea and river port sheltered from winter storms. The famous port de Plaisance or harbor of pleasure boats to the in and out of the boats on the levies, the tranquil waters of the Oust and Vilaine rivers as well as the Canal Nantes-Brest passing by this town is all boats and waterways. For renting boats on the Canal Nantes Brest more info from the tourist office of Redon in French here: Tourist office of Redon on boating

We continue wandering to the point of ave jean Burel past Quai Jean Barts to see the La Croix des marins, or the mariners cross pointing out to the union of the Oust and Vilaine rivers.


From the Middle Ages, Redon strategic position and the development of its port enabled it to strengthen itself economically: it positioned itself as the seaport before Rennes. On the Quai Duguay-Trouin (located in La Digue, on the border between Ille-et-Vilaine and Loire-Atlantique (departments), there are beautiful houses of shipowners and traders from the 17-18C, which bear witness to this intense maritime activity. The current afloat basin of the marina was dug in 1836. It therefore became the heart of the city, due to the port activity that developed there, but also the establishment of many industries. Completed in 1842, the Canal Nantes-Brest crosses the Manche-Océan maritime link at Redon and thereby erects the city as a crossroads for Brittany’s waterways. The digging of the Canal helped make the port district an “island”, connected to the rest of the city by several works of art. Contact for the pleasure boat marina or port de Plaisance are tel +33 (0) 7 77 88 23 22 and email:


More from the city of Redon on the port de plaisance in French here: City of Redon on the port de plaisance



The musée de la Batellerie is nice but on the day we stopped by was close, something to come back for it. It shows the history of boat making and river navigation in the area. King François 1er decision to channel it between Redon and Rennes. This decision gave new impetus to port activity thereby transforming the port of Redon into a real port of Rennes, the boats are then loaded with wine, salt, fish, but also Spanish iron, coal, of building materials ,etc. And we export cider, slates, rye and wood. In the 19C, the canalization of Brittany transformed Redon into a veritable crossroads of the western waterways and the port was then punctuated by the navigation of labor, the mariners, long-time travelers animate the quays and transport their freight along the canals. More on the boating museum in French here: City of Redon on the boating museum


Of course, we had our usual lunch away from home and we walk so finally decided to eat at L’Ecluse pizzeria resto in nearby Saint Nicolas de Redon! just over the department 35 to 44 line! Coming from Redon, after crossing the Saint-Nicolas-de-Redon bridge stop immediately in the parking lot located on your right, the restaurant l’Ecluse is just opposite ,on the road D164 direction La Gacilly. The place was great, we were the first one in, all staff waiting for us , and service was prompt and nice. We had our aperitifs or apéros with porto red, piña colada, whisky cola , l’ecluse house special of fruits no alcohol and cocktail alexis with rosé wine and lemon. Then we went with the tagliatelles with goat cheeses for two, calzone of ham and cheese, and pizzas of Indienne, Royale (beef for me), we had a Lyonnaise house rosé wine bottle and then desserts were bounty (coconut ice cream and choco syrup), banana split, peach melba, pears belle helene, and caraibe coffee with vodka. We left paying at the counter for 28 euros per person. A bit high been in an off area away from the main tourist spots. However, the place is sparkling clean very nice decoration with riverware and old Paris posters, and the place was pack with local people by the time we finish. L’écluse Pizzeria , La Digue, 74, avenue Jean Burel . More info here : L’Ecluse Pizzeria restaurant


Redon port de plaisance quai surcouf to sea may15

And continue to the Ile aux Pies.  Nearly 467 hectares spread over the towns of Bains-sur-Oust (35), Glénac (56), and Saint-Vincent-sur-Oust (56). A wonderful nature site of Bretagne/Brittany, with the Oust river passing and spaces for picnic, horse riding, children playground, kayak,canoe, boating, and mountain climbing on a great cliff. plenty of free parking. You continue on the D873 and reach the panel for ile aux pies take it left and follow the signs until the end. Plenty of camping cars spaces too.

The tourist office of Redon in French here: Tourist office of Redon on the Ile aux Pies and Canal Nantes Brest

And for activities on the Ïle aux Pies or island of Pies in French here: Adventure park on the Ile aux Pies

A bit of historical nod on the Ïle aux Pies , the independence of Bretagne was played near the Île aux Pies! In 845, the town of Bains-sur-Oust was the scene of the Battle of Ballon.

Bains sur Oust

Winner of the armies of the king of France Charles the Bald, the Breton sovereign Nominoë proclaimed himself king of Bretagne and was crowned in the Cathedral of Dol. In the 19C, Île aux Pies was divided into a multitude of small plots, fenced to the west. Only the owners of a plot along the river could approach the water. The grounds were maintained exclusively by hand and the wheelbarrow, the size of the plots prevented a cart, let alone an agricultural machine, from entering. The upper part of the site was used for grazing animals, harvesting litter and hay. Agriculture, hemp and flax farming, hunting, fishing and the river trade were the main economic activities of the inhabitants of the area. In the 1970s, land consolidation created larger plots. The campsite, the car park and the meadow were laid out at that time. And voilà, you can reach it by car, from Bains-sur-Oust, via the D60 then the D873, follow the signs which lead to the campsite.

From the dept 35 Ille et Vilaine on the Ïle aux Pies history in French here: Tourist office of dept 35 Ille et Vilaine on the Ïle aux Pies

Further webpages to help you plan your trip here are

The area tourist office of South Brittany in English here: South Brittany tourist office

The city of Redon tourist office on heritage sites in French: City of Redon on heritage

And there you go folks another dandy in my beautiful Bretagne or Brittany or Breizh. Never a dull moment seeing these beautiful places and so close, you should try them too and be glad you stop by. Hope you enjoy this post on the waterways of Redon.

And remember, happy travels, good health, and many cheers to all!!!

July 15, 2020

Fougéres, and the Arts!

And here continue in nostalgia lane and came back to one of my favorite cities in Bretagne/Brittany. It is known more for its castle but it has many interesting things to see as attested by my previous posts on it. However, as often the case I am afraid, things were left out to show fully the beauty of the town. Therefore, time to remedy that now.

This is Fougéres in the dept 35 of Ille-et-Vilaine in the region of Bretagne.

Let me show a bit introduction to the Arts in Fougéres starting with the theater , then the museums. Hope you enjoy it.

The Victor-Hugo Municipal Theatre, located in the upper town, in the historic district. It is performed in the style of Italian theaters. The room combines a French square plan and an Italian floor plan on four levels. Long occupied by salt merchants and false salters, the old Place du Brûlis evokes the terrible fires of the upper town in the 17C. As early as 1851, the mayor of Fougères proposed to develop the old “cohue à chair” or meat market hall to make it a performance hall. The curtain rises therefore on the theater for the first time in 1886. Following the bombings of 1944, the theater closed its doors. It did not reopen them until 1946. In 1970, the curtain fell; the theater no longer meets the new security rules. In 1996, an identical restoration was voted. Finally in 2001, the theater opened its doors again with the charm of its decor from the end of the 19C. Originally, its 650-seat hall met the needs of a predominantly working population. Today, the theater has 250 seats. The name Théâtre Victor Hugo was given in homage to Victor Hugo who came to discover the city in the company of his Fougeres muse, Juliette Drouet. Today, theatrical performances, concerts and other intimate shows are play.

The official cultural page of the Victor Hugo Theater in Fougéres here: Centre Culturel de Fougéres on the Victor Hugo theater

The tourist office of Fougéres on the Victor Hugo TheaterTourist office of Fougeres on Victor Hugo Theater


In city center there is a nice small Musée de l’Horlogerie (Clock museum )that looks very nice quaint but no time to go in just browse the shop, which was full of trinkets on the clock movement. It is located at 37 rue Nationale old town center. Because the past explains the present and is the pledge of the future, this museum, unique in Bretagne, testifies to the know-how of our master watchmaking craftsmen. Through building clocks, pendulums, watches and tools, you will enter the world of time measurement and the ingenuity of their creators. A moment of pleasure that will end with automata and animated pictures that invite you to daydream. We will be back.

The tourist office of Fougéres on the Clock museum: Tourist office of Fougéres on the musée de l’horlogerie


The Musée Emmanuel de la Villéon museum is located in the upper town, in one of the oldest half-timbered houses in the town, from the 16C near the Church of Saint Léonard (see post). Renowned landscaper, avant-garde colorist, Emmanuel de la Villéon was born in Fougères in 1858. He was one of the last Impressionists; and the museum holds about 30 portraits of the artist. He is the painter of harmony, of quiet joy, of balance, of peasant serenity, where even miseries are planed by the slow rhythm of the seasons. He painted Bretagne, but also love to travel and painted his destinations. The porch house, whose construction dates back to the 16C, is the last of this type of housing which bordered in particular rue Nationale and rue de la Pinterie. Most of them disappeared in the fires that ravaged the city in the 17C and during the bombing of June 1944.

The tourist office of Fougéres on the musée Emmanuel de la VilléonTourist office of Fougéres on the Emmanuel de la Villéon museum


There you folks, a nice town, with plenty of culture and a wonderful castle indeed. All the walks are nice and the things to see plenty. This is Fougéres in my lovely Bretagne or Brittany or Breizh! Hope you enjoy the tour.

And remember, happy travels, good health, and many cheers to all!!!

ps. just for the anecdote, this is my 3100 post in my blog!!! thank you all!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

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