The French city of Lyon, in addition of being a UNESCO World Heritage site, also has some of the best food France has to offer in its "bouchons", or restaurants. These "bouchons" serve up some of the region's most typical dishes, and you don't want to miss them.
Many of the dishes are based on béchamel sauce, potatoes and cold meats - filling meals for adventurous palates.
The Rue Mercière or the Vieux Lyon neighbourhood is teeming with restaurants with terraces offering these local delights.
Here are the 6 dishes that every visitor just has to taste:
Based on flour or wheat flour mixed with eggs, butter and milk which is then combined with pike fish meat. It's served with nantua sauce (made using crayfish butter and crayfish tails) or béchamel sauce.
GÂTEAU DE FOIES DE VOLAILLE
A savoury tart based on chicken livers with tomato sauce and served as an apéritif or main course.
LE SAUCISSON LYONNAIS À CUIRE
Sausages with potato gratin. A slightly sweet yet savoury delicious classic recipe.
LE TABLIER DE SAPEUR
Le tablier de sapeur is a speciality which translates as “fireman's apron” as it apparently bears a striking similarity to the regulation leather apron firefighters use for particularly difficult rescues. What the name hides is the boiled tripe which is then marinated in white wine.
LA CERVELLE DE CANUTS
A wonderful name for a delicious recipe made with fromage blanc seasoned with chopped herbs, shallots, salt, pepper, olive oil and vinegar. It's the ideal accompaniment to a summer apéritif.
LA TARTE À LA PRALINE
La tarte à la praline is a delicious almond cake covered in red or pink sugar. The praline is ground and mixed with cream so as to make an especially fine dough.
All of the dishes can be enjoyed with a tasty glass of Beaujolais grown just north of Lyon.
And finally, to help this hearty food go down, we recommend a stroll along the banks of the Rhône or, for the more adventurous, a climb of Fourvière hill.
Just out of curiosity
No doubt many of you will have heard of the culinary term “(à la) lyonnaise” - in fact, many countries have adopted it into their own cuisines. It is the base of a great many dishes, including “potatoes lyonnaise”, “sauce lyonnaise” or “cardons à la lyonnaise”, and is as simple as cooking with onions or caramelised onions.