France is renowned as the home of gastronomic greatness, but it’s also strong on affordability, because the French tend to feel that excellent food shouldn’t be elitist. All regions have amazing restaurants at affordable prices but here in Morlaix Bay, we have some of the best.
How Brittany tops the charts
Explore this region and you’ll pass acres of fresh vegetables, fields of farm animals and countless fishing boats. Morlaix Bay’s especially fertile soil turns this area into a vast market garden, famous for artichokes, early vegetables and the Roscoff Pink Onion that thrives here. Add to this the livestock, dairy and abundant seafood and you’ll see why north Brittany attracts so many talented chefs : great dishes require great ingredients.
Brittany alone has 40 Michelin-starred restaurants, which the French simply call les tables étoilées (starred tables). Finistère, the westernmost area, has 10 Michelin-starred restaurants and three of these are within just 16km starting right here in Morlaix Bay. You could create an unforgettable, high-class restaurant crawl including Le Brittany in Roscoff, La Pomme d’Api in St-Pol-de-Léon, and the double-starred restaurant of Patrick Jeffroy in Carantec, covering a stretch of under ten miles !
Patrick Jeffroy is a true advocate of the top-quality fresh produce grown locally. He grew up enjoying the fresh fish of Plougasnou, his Grandmother’s vegetable garden in Saint-Martin-des-Champs and all the fresh local produce so perfect for an aspiring chef. Apprenticed at fifteen, Patrick travelled throughout the world perfecting the seafood dishes that became his speciality. In 2000 he opened Carantec’s Restaurant Patrick Jeffroy, famous for its fantastic panoramic views and its double-Michelin-star rating. Your tastebuds will tell you that you’re dreaming ; the top food critics will tell you that he is a genius ; Patrick will tell you that it’s all about great local ingredients.
Best-value Michelin dining
If you’re salivating at the idea of fine dining but are on a limited budget, fear not ! Firstly, you need to remember that our local Michelin-starred restaurants around Morlaix won’t cost as much as in London or Paris. Secondly, you’ll see that if you choose a midweek lunch, you get incredibly good value. A meal at Patrick’s restaurant, for example, can cost up to 132€ (£96) per person without drinks, but a 3-course lunch with a glass of wine is just 50€ (£36), and that includes Saturdays.
A gem in Morlaix centre
When exploring the centre of Morlaix, you’re certain to find the winding streets and historic architecture of Quartier Saint-Mathieu. Here, tucked neatly on a street corner, the modest front of Restaurant l’Evidence underplays the brilliance of its cuisine, acclaimed by Gault Millau and countless delighted diners since it opened in 2010. Expect exquisite versions of French classics perfectly paired with good wines, at very reasonable prices (2-course lunch 15€, 2-course dinner with two glasses of wine 32€). It seems the only problem if you come at lunchtime is that you’ll immediately book for dinner, too…
Great value seafood
It’s not only the restaurants here that offer fabulous food at affordable prices. If you’re in a self-catering gîte, then be sure to visit our local markets. Particularly good value are the local mussels, crabs, oysters, lobster and fresh fish, with the bonus of very few food miles as they’re caught nearby. A real treat for British visitors are the scallops, which the French call Coquilles or Noix Saint-Jacques. You get far more to the kilo on this side of the Channel, which is great news for scallop fans !
Local produce, lovingly prepared
For many visitors, the great pleasure of dining out in France is the authenticity. Look out for the labelRestaurant du Terroir, given to restaurants that focus on local produce and whose menus include traditional Breton dishes (often with a contemporary twist). Locally, our champions are An Dol Vadconveniently located in Morlaix centre, and Le Puits de Jeanne in the wonderfully rural setting of Plouégat-Moysan. Dining at either one will introduce you to local specialities, prepared by chefs who are truly passionate about their dishes.
Another label that appeals to food-lovers is that of Crêperie gourmande. You might say that ‘not all crêpes are created equal’, so if you look for a crêperie gourmande, you know it’s one of the best in the west. Here in Morlaix Bay, we have the modern Crêperie de Jeanne in Plougonven, the traditionalCrêperie l’Hermine in Morlaix centre and the stone-wall interior of Crêperie les Fougères in Pleyber-Christ.
Crêpes are a Breton speciality, and it’s practically the law to eat at least one while you’re here, so you might as well choose the best !
If you’re already on holiday, feel free to ask in our local Tourist Offices about nearby markets and restaurants, and whether you’re here or at home, make use of our English website to find your perfect place to dine. Bon appétit !
All prices correct at time of writing