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Le Touquet’s restaurant scene Well, there’s plenty of choice here but there are two truly standout places that really shouldn’t be missed. The Westminster Hotel has two great restaurants – the Michelin Star Le Pavillon with a fabulous menu created by chef William Elliot (sounds English but he is French!), and brasserie Les Cimaisses. I have to tell you, I tried the “tasting menu” at Le Pavillon and at 95 Euros it isn’t cheap, but, I have never ever had a meal quite like it, memorably divine. A little down the road in the rue de Metz you’ll find restaurant Perard. Those millionaires of the 1940s and 50s may well have known of it since Serge Perard the founder was making soup from 1940 onwards to sell at the market. It rapidly became famous from Le Touquet to Paris and beyond and was such a success that by 1963 Perard was able to open a restaurant in Le Touquet. The soup, whose menu he had refined by then, was adored by customers – it still is. So much so that Perard soup is now exported worldwide. Order the soup starter in the restaurant and you'll be offered a free top up, beware - it's filling and you'll want to leave room for the lush main courses and delicious desserts! Above: Perard; right: serving the famous soup! Head to Perard today and you can buy two different soups, the Perard that’s in jars and sold worldwide, and the home-made soup that you can only buy at the restaurant shop. At 5 euros a litre, this delicious fish soup is a steal. It keeps for a couple of weeks in the fridge so take some home, just as those early customers did! Perard smoke their own salmon here (delicious and perfect for any time not just Christmas) and you can see the chefs cooking in the state of the art kitchens. Enjoy a glass of wine and fresh oysters, sushi or soup at the swanky oyster bar or head into the brasserie for a fabulous lunch or dinner with locals who love this place. There's a la carte or choose from set menus, there’s a very reasonable “Perard menu” at 20 Euros. You can also get real bouillabaisse, the only place outside Marseille that I know where they get it spot on! And the shop is terrific, the freshest fish and ready made fish meals to take home.
Left: Le Touquet at Christmas; above: the emblem of Le Touquet; below: One of the many great cake shops in the town Christmas in Le Touquet This place positively sparkles for the festive season when the Parc des Pins transforms into an enchanted forest lit by thousands of twinkling fairy lights and the bandstand makes for the perfect Christmas selfie to share with your friends! There are Christmas chalets here where you can pick up a gift or useful things like a winter scarf and hat to keep the chill out! Take a horse-drawn carriage ride round the town to enjoy the lights and Christmas decorations that festoon the streets ( via the tourist office). In mid-December the listed art deco market place holds a weekend Christmas Market that attracts thousands. There's music, a very festive ambience and stalls groaning with festive fare and gifts. There’s also an ice skating rink, pony rides and the shops pull out all the stops with lovely window displays – great for chocolate, macarons, marshmallow, cakes and bread, fish, charcuterie as well as high end gifts and clothes (think Paris style). Details: Christmas Lights: They're turned on at 17.30 Friday 25 Nov until 1 Jan 2017. Santa arrives Saturday 26 Nov at 17.30 with a firework display! Christmas Market 10-11 December Jazz a Noel 10-29 December at the Palais de Congres Tourist office Le Touquet - for full details.
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