Summer evenings in the South of France seem to last forever. Especially when you find yourself on the picturesque terrace of a bistro-style restaurant in an authentic village. Le Bistrot Cersois in Cers is exactly this sort of place, run with heart and soul by the charming English-French couple Lisa and Bruno Le Mentec. Here, beautiful homemade food leaves Bruno’s kitchen to be served with a smile by Lisa.
Restaurant wish list
Oldest had a dinner party in Béziers last Monday evening, and I had to pick a restaurant to pass the time between dropping him off and picking him up. As my sister and brother-in-law were staying with us, I wanted something special not too far from where Oldest was. Not easy on a Monday night… When going through my restaurant wish list, I spotted Le Bistrot Cersois, which has been on my list for ages. Bruno and Lisa took over the village café in December 2018. They have turned it into a warm family restaurant, preserving the original details. As they were open on Monday, I quickly made a reservation for the six of us. Chéri and my sister-in-law were a bit sceptical, which was good, as expectations were low.
Until we arrived at Cers… and Le Bistrot Cersois happened to be the picture-perfect French scenery. The yellow restaurant and its terrace with matching olive-green furniture and cosy bulb string lights, looks out over a small square flanked by rustic houses. Chef Bruno changes the menu daily, offering traditional and home-cooked French cuisine following the seasons. Twice a day, for lunch and dinner, you can choose between two starters, two main courses and two desserts for 16.90 euros for three courses. The restaurant is popular both with locals and visitors. This became very clear when I took the above picture of Bruno and Lisa, and out of the blue, the whole terrace started to applaud them.
Van Gogh painting
When we were there, we shared a charcuterie platter and a seasonal salad with melon and feta cheese for a starter. Next, the boys went for a ‘pièce du boucher’ steak with fries while us girls took the filet of lieu noir (coalfish) in a silky verbena sauce. All the adults chose the same dessert: a tartelette with locally grown apricots on a white chocolate cream. The twins preferred a waffle and were very happy with it. And then the night fell, and the stars came out. Gazing over the terrace, with the yellow of Le Bistrot Cersois’ façade and the deep blue sky in the background, made me feel like I was living in a Van Gogh painting. And Chéri and my sister-in-law’s confidence in my knowledge of hidden culinary gems was restored once again.