The day after our visit of the Challans market and the lovely pastry shop nearby, we took an early train en direction de Nantes. The program was a beautiful breakfast, buying books (I had to refrain from getting a lot of cookbooks...), lunch with my cousin and her husband, some sightseeing, and a few chocolates and refreshments with my lovely aunt.
The sun was shining and everyone was in a great mood, what more could you ask!
As we got off the train, E. and I were absolutely starving. We had skipped breakfast back in Challans as we knew full well where we would end up having it in Nantes: at the world famous brasserie La Cigale!
It has become a little tradition for E. and I to have breakfast at La Cigale whenever we visit Nantes. And how could you not want to have breakfast there?!
The brasserie was inaugurated in 1895 and has retained all its art nouveau decor designed by the ceramist architect Emile Libaudière. Every time I go there, I spend a few minutes staring at the beautiful paintings on the ceiling and observing the details of the ceramic art on the walls. You nearly feel like you are in another world. I often find myself daydreaming and forgetting I am not on my own when stopping there for a meal.
As we had arrived early, the brasserie was nearly empty (actually, the streets of Nantes were also empty so it was great for taking photos and enjoying the views of the beautiful buildings before the streets were crowded). We were sat at a table with a lovely view of the Cours Cambronne. We did not need a lot of time to order as we already knew we wanted le petit-déjeuner complet (full breakfast).
Some freshly squeezed orange juice was first served on the table, quickly followed by a basket of delicious toasted bread and slices of homemade brioche. It was accompanied by a piece of creamery salted butter and some homemade spreads: organic apple puree, organic seasonal jam and a bit of salted caramel sauce.
Our hot drinks arrived quite promptly as we were starting to eat our toasts. E. went for a grand café and the chocolate lover in me chose a Valrhona Celaya hot chocolate. The quality of the chocolate was really exquisite and I nearly ordered a second one until I saw the plate of mini croissants and pains au chocolat being served on our table. I very obviously had to leave some room for those!
We left the brasserie quite happy after our fabuleux petit-déjeuner and were ready to spend the day walking around Nantes.
Having breakfast at La Cigale really is a wonderful experience. If one day you get to visit Nantes, spare some time to eat there. You will definitely have a very French breakfast or lunch moment to bring back with you as a souvenir!
You might also want to read about the rest of my little trip to France this Summer: