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Home & Away Dining Society Reviews

Home & Away Dining Society Reviews

Home & Away Dining Society Reviews

Posted by: webmaster on Tuesday June 02, 2009 (20:02:59)
Home & Away Dining Society
All our restaurant reviews can be found here-click on the 'full article' link to read the whole thing. If you wish to comment or add anything to any of the articles please feel free! You can even add your own photos to the gallery if there is one linked.
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Home & Away Dining Society Reviews

October 2012 - Auberge des Tilleuls, Heilles

Posted by: webmaster on Tuesday October 16, 2012 (13:34:08)
Auberge des Tilleuls, Heilles
For the first time in what seems like a long time we managed to organise a Home & Away get together in a restuarant. The last couple of times we've descended on peoples' houses for BBQs etc and it seemed a little unfair to write a review on those! So the restaurant reviews weren't dead, they were just sleeping!

So on a rainy October night 25 souls braved the inaccurate sat-navs and the Picardie roads to come to the Auberge des Tilleuls in Heilles, a tiny village about two thirds of the way from Chantilly to Beauvais. The format was the usual - a welcome drink ,3 courses plus wine and coffee for the all inclusive price of 40€. The menu was offered by Charles-Edouard Barbier, the young chef who runs the restaurant. Charles-Edouard was trained on the Cote d'Azur and in China, but his menu reflects more local ingredients and styles.    more ...
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Home & Away Dining Society Reviews

March 2011 - Le Karément, Chantilly

Posted by: webmaster on Friday April 08, 2011 (13:27:28)
Le Karément, Chantilly
March saw a crowd descend on Le Karément in Chantilly, a restaurant beautifully placed opposite the écuries on the rue Connétable. This particular address has hosted a number of different restaurants over the years and Le Karément is the latest. Judging by how busy it was on this particular saturday night in March it should be there for some time!

The evening was organised for us by Tanja & Benoit, whose son is one of the chefs in the kitchen. She managed to secure a table for 21 of us, and the traditional H&A offering of a three course meal, with drinks and coffee for 40€.

It was a bit of a squeeze, and I think the other diners that evening were a little shocked at seeing us all get seated, but at least the food fight didn't start until after everyone else had left! The ambiance in the dining room was good; small but not too crowded. I note that they have a large outdoor area out the back of the restaurant where apparently they have large outdoor grills to cook fish and meat in the summer months.    more ...
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Home & Away Dining Society Reviews

January 2011 - Auberge de Gicourt

Posted by: webmaster on Tuesday February 01, 2011 (09:35:59)
Diners at the Auberge de Gicourt
Mid January saw the largest group of people we've had for an 'away' dinner descend on the Auberge de Gicourt in Agnetz, between Creil and Beauvais. This was a restaurant no-one had ever heard of, let alone been to so was a real shot in the dark! The website looked good though and first impressions once we'd found it (not in Agnetz itself but on the main road from Clermont) were also positive.

Once inside Mr Fillion, the owner, had reserved us our own room upstairs to keep us out of the way. The downstairs dining room looked busy, always a good sign, as we trooped past. Once installed the tradition 'welcome drink' arrived and we were able to re-introduce ourselves to old friends and meet a few who'd never joined us before.    more ...
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Home & Away Dining Society Reviews

October 2010 - Les Grand Prés

Posted by: webmaster on Saturday October 30, 2010 (19:30:07)
Les Grand Prés
A dark night in mid-October saw a good turnout for our latest outing - a home fixture at 'Les Grand Prés' in Vineuil Saint Firmin, just outside Chantilly. Julie Shaw had made all the arrangements for us, organising the table and the menu but was sadly missed when she was unable to attend at the last minute! We did toast you by way of thanks anyway Julie.

The restaurant was very quiet for a Saturday but they had set out a long table to accommodate 26 of us. One wall of the restaurant is glass which could make it feel a little cold, especially when the restaurant is not full but in fact it was only near the door that anyone felt a slight chill. It was completely dark outside so we couldn't enjoy the view, but it's a very pleasant setting in the summer and for lunch.

They may have been a little shocked at home much noise a group of expats can make as they were keen for us to get seated as soon as possible. However the tone of the level of service was set when everyone was individually offered an aperitif of their choice before we started eating - no cheap mixed cocktails here. Lists were distributed to remind everyone what they'd ordered and starters followed fairly swiftly.    more ...
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Home & Away Dining Society Reviews

March 2010 - L'Avenue

Posted by: webmaster on Monday March 22, 2010 (15:20:52)
L'Avenue, Chantilly
On 13 March the Home & Away Dining Society was again “at home”, with 20 diners at “L’Avenue” in the centre of Chantilly. Demand exceeded supply – the restaurant only being able to accommodate 20 in addition to its other clients. We were pleased to welcome four first timers – Catherine and Paul and Kate and Michael. Fred had very kindly negotiated with the owner and come up with an appealing menu and, most importantly, “vin à volonté” – at an all-inclusive €40.

We kicked off with a coupe de champagne accompanied by some tasty hors d’oeuvres. The entrées were both excellent - Tartare de Tomates au Chèvre et Magret de Canard fumé and Brochette de Gambas. The wine started to flow – Bordeaux (Les Hauts de Cour Montessant), Muscadet (Henry de Velter blanc) and a Cotes de Provence rosé (Bio Croix de Basson) – and we were all off to a good start.    more ...
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Home & Away Dining Society Reviews

January 2010 - Les Trois Canards

Posted by: webmaster on Wednesday March 03, 2010 (16:12:03)
Les Trois Canards, Ognon
The long winter was in full freezing flow when 28 plucky souls braved the elements to trek out to Ognon for the first Home & Away dinner of 2010. Whilst Ognon was pretty local for the Senlis and beyond residents it seemed a long way from Lamorlaye!

Les Trois Canards is situated right in the centre of Ognon, opposite the church. It's a beautiful little village that literally has nothing in it in terms of commerce other than this restaurant. We were lucky to get a table big enough to fit us all as it is a very popular restaurant. The owners were very accommodating and genuinely seemed to pleased to have us there - although I'm not sure the other diners were so pleased!

The traditional menu at Les Trois Canards is a menu dégustation - a tasting menu. We were given a very varied couple of choices from each of three courses, along with cheese, wine and coffees for a very reasonable 38€.

The starters were chosen from a home-made foie gras, a carpaccio of pear, scallops and red tuna, a terrine of goat's cheese with smoked duck or a smoked salmon. The foie gras was the most popular and was a very good choice - very creamy and it definitely tasted 'home-made' rather than shop bought. The carpaccio was also very popular with everyone commenting on the excellent fusion of different flavours.    more ...
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Home & Away Dining Society Reviews

December 2009 - Chateau de la Tour

Posted by: webmaster on Wednesday December 23, 2009 (20:44:50)
Chateau de la Tour
December 12th saw the first Home & Away Christmas Dinner, held at the Chateau de la Tour in Chantilly. Susan Toursel had very kindly agreed to help organise the event and, using her considerable Irish charm, she managed to convince the chateau that we could have a menu with a choice of two dishes per course, aperitif, wine and coffee for a very reasonable cost.

If you haven't been before the Chateau de la Tour is a beautiful chateau tucked away on a back road behind the Aqualis swimming pool complex. Approached down a single lane road one descends a final hill to find the chateau perched above its lawned gardens, with a stunning terrace for the summer and an outdoor pool. The chateau is a hotel, built at the beginning of the last century with a bar area as well as its restaurant. The 15 rooms in the old chateau are beatiful but they are supplemented with some rather less grandiose rooms in a modern wing that was built on in 1990. Susan managed to book us in the Salle Pauline, a stunning room in the old part of the chateau attached to the restaurant. Its french windows all down one side give onto the terrace and the garden beyond whilst an enormous fireplace dominates one wall. You could just imagine it looking the same when Edith Piaf used to visit in her heyday.

We managed to finalise the numbers at 32 in the end which meant four tables of eight so we had room to move around. Everyone arrived in evening wear, a great excuse for those of us who don't get a chance very often to get our glad rags on. The staff had done a great job in dressing the tables and, with the addition of some Christmas candles and some crackers and the fire roaring the scene was set for a splendid evening. Aperitifs were taken along with a kir in front of the fire which gave everyone a chance to mingle and meet the couples who'd never been to a Home & Away dinner before.    more ...
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Home & Away Dining Society Reviews

November 2009 - Villa Spicy

Posted by: webmaster on Sunday December 06, 2009 (23:33:59)
Villa Spicy, Paris
The date was 7th November, the venue central Paris as a brave carload From Chantilly and another from Senlis took on the A1 and November weather in the quest to find a parking space in central Paris.
Alongside the usual suspects it was nice to see some new and returning faces.

After exchanging our BMW for a piece of paper ( a fair swap in many people's eyes), we arrived at villa spicy, a seemingly unassuming restaurant from the outside, but with a cosy, welcoming ambience inside.

Immediately, our aperitifs arrived with kirs all round whilst we played the waiting game of when the other car would arrive!

Finally we were all there and the starters were served with Green pea soup served with a morelle of goats cheese and candied chicken gizzards served with lentils being popular choices.

Swiftly afterwards with an unusual display of French efficiency, the mains arrived. Pollock steak (yes spelt correctly) served with lemon and celery was very popular along with "blackened" chicken served with a creamy mashed potato, which came with a lovely jus, served either 'a table' or 'a la chemise' according to taste.

Afterwards, we had a few moments to reflect and wipe jus from clothes before desserts arrived.    more ...
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Home & Away Dining Society Reviews

September 2009 - Kanimambo

Posted by: webmaster on Thursday October 01, 2009 (15:32:27)
Happy Diners
The first outing after the rentrée for Home & Away saw 26 happy diners descend on a newly opened Franco-Portuguese restaurant, the Kanimambo, in Gouvieux. Keen to attract new customers the owner, Hélène, had offered a selection of Portuguese dishes along with Portuguese wine for our normal €40 per head. Armed with a Portuguese dictionary we descended on the restaurant.

The restaurant itself is pretty immaculate as you can imagine after a refit, although perhaps lacking in character. The front is set out as a bar with the restaurant behind and a small terrace out the back for dining al fresco (and for the smokers!). Initially Hélène had thought she’d be able to simply screen off a part of the restaurant for us – she soon found out that 26 expats could be pretty loud! Other diners were cleared from the area and we had pretty much the whole of the back of the place to ourselves.    more ...
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