Sunday, November 20, 2016

L'Agape Restaurant, a new Michelin Bib Gourmand Restaurant in Avignon

As soon as L'Agape Restaurant was awarded a Bib Gourmand by the Michelin inspectors, I began to make attempts to locate L'Agape Restaurant in Avignon. I thought I would come across it as I walked around but never found it in the area where we normally circulate.

One of our guests who stayed at our home in Sablet this summer mentioned in an email that they had eaten 3 different times at this restaurant during their sojourn in Provence. So obviously, they liked the restaurant and I decided we must go there and try it out when we went to Sablet this past October.

So when cousin Jean-Marc suggested we meet for dinner someplace half way between Montpellier and Sablet one Friday night, I immediately suggested L'Agape Restaurant. We headed off early with friends Steve and Mary in tow, who had just found out in the cutest way possible that they are going to be grandparents next Spring. As you might have guessed, we were going early so Mary and Shirley could shop for baby clothes before dinner.

I dropped off Shirley, Steve and Mary near the Palais des Papes and I went to find L'Agape Restaurant and hopefully parking nearby. While I found parking at Jean-Jaures Parking, which is only about 100 meters from the Restaurant, we could have easily parked at our usual spot at Hotel Mercure as it is an easy walk down Rue de la République to Saint Martial Temple and around the corner to L'Agape Restaurant.

Saint Martial Temple's construction (seen below) was completed in 1388 for a monastery and school for Benedictines from Cluny. The building was enlarged in the 17th century before being abandoned during the French Revolution. Restored for use by the Musée Calvet until the early 19th century, then the Natural History Museum, then a Teachers' College, a Post office and Tourism Office. Finally, it was given to the Protestants to use as a church in 1881.

Saint Martial Temple

Saint Martial Temple Courtyard

The chapel seen below can be found at Place des Corps Saints. It was built in 1369 next to the indigents cemetery where the poor of Avignon were buried. The double dedication is a reminder that there was a chapel dedicated to Saint Michel that was destroyed at the end of the 16th century. Today the chapel is an art gallery that is opened every day and features artwork by local artists.

Saint Michel and All the Saints Chapel

Like a village in the center of Avignon, Place des Corps Saints is now a pleasant esplanade arranged around a fountain. It is surrounded by shops and cafe terraces with shade provided by large plane trees where a mix of locals, students and visitors gather.

Place des Corps Saints

We all showed up, or at least those of us from Sablet, early, and being thirsty and needing a bathroom, we sat for drinks in one of the café terraces along Place des Corps Saints, and waited for 7:30 and the arrival of the cousins.

Statue of Virgin Mary and baby Jesus on a house at Place des Corps Saints

The chef Julien Gleize opened L'Agape Restaurant on this pleasant square in the heart of Avignon in June 2014. While the chef prepares your meal, his wife Anne takes care of you in the dining room. The restaurant is opened daily Tuesday through Saturday for lunch and dinner.

L'Agape Restaurant

We chose the 2013 Château Puech-Haut Cuvée Prestige Rouge from the Coteaux du Languedoc to accompany our dinner. The winery is located close to where the cousins live in Montpellier. The wine is a blend of 55% Grenache and 45% Syrah and was aged in concrete tanks. I should mention that Robert Parker awarded the wine 93 points.

2013 Château Puech-Haut Cuvée Prestige

Our meal rolled out as follows starting with the amuse bouche shown below. All the dishes were tasty and artfully displayed on the serving plates.

Amuse bouche of braised beef cheeks in soup

Vegetarian plate

Quenelle of poultry with pumpkin puree

Shrimp croquettes with Brussels sprouts and shallot espuma

Fillet of Daurade with coco beans and Swiss chard cake


Cheese plate

Chocolate cake with grapefruit

It is nice to add an excellent option to the dining choices in Avignon. L'Agape Restaurant is quite easy to find and parking is available close by. Most importantly, the food is very good and prices moderate, always a great combination. We will return.

L'Agape Restaurant
21 Place des Corps Saints
84000 Avignon
Tel: 04 90 85 04 06

1 comment:

  1. Fabulous photos and my mouth is watering. Oh wow. Hope all is well Diane