First day in Lyon
Lyon Travel Blog› entry 2 of 10 › view all entries
We arrived in the early afternoon and we found our hotel quite easy; thank God for the GPS, well I guess I would have managed anyway. The hotel looked okay from the outside and I managed to find a free parking spot just behind the hotel where some of the people working in the neighbouring buildings also parked their cars.
We walked in and talked to the two ladies running the hotel. The hotel was an aparthotel and therefore without normal reception. We had our rooms at the 5th floor and the room was nice but not more; with a small kitchen in the middle of the living room, an okay bathroom, well it had no shower curtain, but otherwise with what you needed.
In the living room there was also a futon bed, which could be turned into a 1½ person bed.
We quickly changed to something warm preparing ourselves for a long day outside before we would end the day with a dinner at Paul Bocuse’s restaurant. We walked first down to the river eager to find a taxi or a bus that could take us to the city centre. Little did we know at that time we lived 500 meters away from Gare de Vaise and the unmanned Metro.
We walked along the river and crossed it at Pont Masaryk and started walking towards the city centre on the other side; there we just missed a bus but there was still no sight of Taxi’s. Finally we gave up and entered Brasserie le Tagalou at Quai Joseph Gillet. We were in the need of getting some heat but I could also enjoy my first beer in Lyon for this time, so I took a beer and Maxime had a cup of tea.
After hanging out in the bar for 30 minutes we asked the friendly waiter to call us a taxi but that turned out to be completely impossible so we decided to walk again along the river.
We finally arrived in the city centre and Place de Terreaux, where they were doing sound and light checks for the following day. We decided that it was time again to get some heat and entered Café Le Moulin Joli on the corner on the square at Rue Puits-Gaillot, the place that looked cozy from the outside but had lost all personality inside after a recent make over! We stayed there for a sandwich and beer before we headed out on the route of the light festival. We wanted to walk it before tomorrow, so we knew what to look for.
Lyon is actually quite hilly and we walked up and down all the hills and streets and enjoyed every minute; the city was all dressed up and there were activities going on everywhere after some hours we needed a break and some heat again and at Place Sathonay we spotted Café de la Mairie which seemed as a nice place to be on a summer day.
From outside it looked very cozy, but when we went in we were hit by an experience that for us had been typical French so far; there was not much coziness inside, it was like they had removed the history from inside.
The bars interior was quite cold, and left no space for ambiance. The light was not nice; it was way too cold and sharp like in a garage for cars. We ordered two glasses of red wine and got something that the cat had dragged in! It tasted really bad; but when all this has been said, I must say that the people were really nice and friendly; asking us where we were from and so forth.
We left for the streets some 25 minutes later and hit the streets again towards the city centre and found a really nice wine bar which I forgot the name on. Here we got a very nice glass of wine the both of us, and I ended with one of these French green non alcoholic mints drinks which was very freshening.
The restaurant was situated some distance from the city centre all the way out at Quai de la Plage some 22 euro in a taxi from the city centre.
We were probably looking too common but we had been out walking all day and when we entered there was an elderly woman in the entrance who really gave us the eye when we went in.
Some guests were the rock star or movie star types with a pack of blond girls in tights pants and too large breasts to fit their small tops. You had also the up dressed family with their 3 grown up sons just home from board school.
Maxime and I was in for a heavy food experience at Bocuse. The Aperitif was for me a standard glass of Champagne that turned out to be a Mumm. Max went for a house thing; something red kirish! They served a food Appetizer which was a small glass of pumpkin soup with maroons; very tasty by the way.
My starter was a foie gras with a little jelly containing artichoke and truffles; Foie Gras de Canard Maison en Gelee au Sauternes Antonin Careme! Maxime took almost the same but with one of the two foie gras exchanged by a duck pate; Dodine de Canard a l'ancienne pistachee et Foie Gras de Canard Maison! The taste was good but heavy.
As a main course we chose an in baked fish with some lovely filling and a fantastic but super heavy sauce; Loup en croute Feuilletee, sauce Choron. The sauce was almost the thing that ended our lives but we managed to go even a bit further.
We actually also managed to have the cheese, but barely; Selection de Fromages Frais et Addines "Mere Richard" Now the killing was almost complete; Max was almost out of breath and I was on the same way. The cheeses were very good but with humongous farm life taste. The goat cheese was so heavy that it almost got stuck in the mouth.
After this the Petit Fours came in together with a small Chocolate mousse which was very heavy and far from light! The killing was almost there, but we got saved by the bell in the last minute.
The dessert table rolled in and the display was awesome and we both went for the fruit. Maxime went for the raspberries and I took strawberries with a lemon sorbet - and that is to me a fabulous combination I have loved since I was 12 years old in Rome with my dad.
After the meal we were totally finished and full. We could absolutely not do anything more so we went back to the apartment to sleep and that was the end of the first day in Lyon.