Matthieu Vidal, aged 35, is the chef at the soon-to-open l’Ortensia in Saint Gervais-sur-Mare, Hérault.
Manager Lise Vidal is Matthieu’s sister, and she will run front of house, reservations, and the hotel rooms, together with a small team.
Their father is Luc Vidal , and was instrumental in finding the restaurant / hotel.
We spoke to them to discover what their plans are.
“It’s fine dining, but with an informal atmosphere”
Matthieu’s philosophy is to use local seasonal products. “If the product is good enough, it speaks for itself”, he said during our interview about the opening of the restaurant and hotel. “It’s fine dining, but with an informal atmosphere – we want people to come as they are, and enjoy the place. Smart or casual, ‘come and relax’ is our philosophy.”
Matthieu has worked internationally as a chef in France, Guernsey, Florida and the Goodwood Estate in the UK.
Lise went on to say “The Ortensia is in a beautiful location, and it’s a fantastic opportunity to work with local partners. For example we are using Le Petit Caviste from Lamalou-Les-Bains to help us with the wines. He has come up with some great suggestions.” They are finalising their other partners, and we will add their details as we get them.
Matthieu and Lise, together with Luc, took possession of the beautiful premises on 1 March, and they have been busy preparing the rooms and the restaurants, ready for the opening on Wednesday 3 April.
There are four bedrooms, and one suite with a salon and two bedrooms. Prices range from €80 to €130 per night.
Menu Éphémère is a lunchtime menu other than weekends and fériés. €22 for entrée/plat or plat/dessert, or €28 for entrée/plat/dessert.
Pause Gourmande is available in the evenings, fériés and lunchtime at weekends, and is €38.
Menu Dégustation is for the whole table and is €67 each.
La Carte is also available. Although the menus were still work in progress when we spoke to them this week, this is a sample of some of the dishes which may be on the menu.
The Ortensia is open from midday until 2pm, and 7pm till 9pm Wednesday to Sunday.
Domaine de la Pièce
2 rue du Château
Telephone: 04 99 42 00 91