After doing some looking about and reading reviews for Quebec City restaurants within walking distance of the Chauteau Frontenac (where we were staying), I chose Le Lapin Sauté as the place where The Lady Friend and I would have dinner. A quick ride on the funiculaire took us from the Frontenac to the little pedestrian street known as Le Petit Champlain, pictured above.
Le Lapin Sauté is a picture postcard perfect restaurant right in the centre of the picture postcard perfect Le Petit Champlain. If you changed the name of the place to something Czech, you could easily drop the place in the middle of Prague’s Old Town and no one would be the wiser.
Le Lapin Sauté means “The Rabbit Jumped” and may also be a play on words since sautéing is also a type of cooking. As the name implies, their speciality is rabbit dishes. Here’s how they describe themselves on their English site:
Obviously, rabbit is our specialty. We serve it crystallized, in pies or with a delicious sauce. But we don’t just keep rabbit in our ovens. Our kitchen magicians create wonderful dishes with duck, lamb, salmon or sandwiches au gratin with local cheese. And our maple creme brulee alone is worth the trip to Petit-Champlain Street, located right across from our cousin, Le Cochon Dingue.
The rabbit motif can be found in their decor everywhere:
…and I mean everywhere:
We decided to have dinner on their patio, which offered a view of both Le Petit Champlain and the neighbouring parkette, Park Félix-Leclerc, where a busker played guitar.
We started with a couple of glasses of prosecco…
…and then moved on to a rosé, which would go well with the dinner we picked out.
We had the “tout lapin, tout canard” special, known in English as “Rabbit and Duck for Two” (literally, it’s “All rabbit, all duck”):
Here’s what was on the platter:
- Preserved rabbit leg
- Homemade rabbit “rillettes”
- Rabbit sausage
- Preserved duck leg
- Duck foie gras
- Smoked duck breast
- Preserved carrots and onions,
- “La Sauvagine” cheese
- Beet and apple salad
- Sourdough bread with nuts
- Rustic bread
This meal is the perfect solution to this dilemma:
For dessert, we had a platter of Quebec cheeses, including baluchon and La Sauvagine, both of which were excellent.
Afterwards, we walked out onto Le Petit Champlain to listen a little more closely to Bob Fournier, who was playing accordion. That led to a little jam session, which I blogged about earlier.
If you’re looking for a great romantic dinner spot in Quebec City, you can’t go wrong with Le Lapin Sauté, at least as long as your date doesn’t have any qualms about eating “cute lil’ bunnies”.