The dining room of L’Auberge de la Mère Poulard

Le Mont Saint-Michel is magnificent, and as the writer Victor Hugo aptly observed, “Le Mont Saint-Michel is to the sea what the Great Pyramid of Giza is to the desert”; a defining monument. Visiting Le Mont Saint-Michel involves quite a workout, too, especially if you climb all the steep streets and staircases up to the Benedictine abbey.

So if you’ve arrived here sensibly early to avoid the crowds that start to swell from 10.30am onwards of any given day, you’ll doubtless be hungry by the time you’ve descended to the main gate leading to the Mont. This, of course, is exactly where you’ll find the renowned Auberge de la Mère Poulard, which serves what may just be the world’s most famous omelettes – for what is also certainly one of the heftiest tariffs charged for same anywhere in France.

The famous Mère Poulard omelette

So the question begs itself: Are the omelettes worth it, both in terms of time – service is often leisurely, to put it politely – and the wound to your wallet? Well, €34, the à la carte price, is steep for an omelette, but there’s also no denying their deliciousness, and they also propose a three-course €35 menu, which offers better value. One way or another, though, the foamy, creamy, gently wood-smoke-scented omelettes – they’re cooked in long-handled copper pans over an open fire – are a luscious treat and the gastronomic emblem of Le Mont Saint-Michel. They come with an array of various garnishes, which are served alongside the airy, gently browned omelette itself, including sautéed potatoes and Camembert, bacon, ratatouille, and others.

Just be sure to have a reservation, and plan on booking your table as early as possible to avoid the inevitable queues that grow here.

Grande Rue, 50170 Le Mont Saint-Michel. Tel: +33 (0)2 33 89 68 68. Average €35. www.merepoulard.com

From France Today magazine

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