on November 13, 2000
Chateau d'Arbieu has been in the family of Count Philippe de Chenerilles for generations. He and his wife have turned this lovely chateau into a bed and breakfast, mostly to help with the renovations and upkeep. They are a delightful, hospitable couple. Breakfast, served in the billards room, is included in the room rate. You can also choose to have dinner at the chateau for an additional (and very reasonable price). Dinner is served family-style around a large dining table. We joined M. Chenerilles and two other guests -- a young woman from Reunion and her 6-year old daughter -- in the living room for a before-dinner glass of wine and some snacks. There we all got acquainted, with M. Chenerilles adeptly translating and keeping the conversation going between the woman, who spoke no English, and my husband and me, who speak only minimal French. When Mme. Chenerilles announced dinner was ready, we were all seated at the family dining table. Dinner started with a simple tossed salad. The main course was a very interesting and tasty casserole of pork, tomatoes and cornichons (pickles), served with sauteed diced potatoes and onions (like home fries). It was simple cooking, but very good. After the main course, a cheese board of five very nice local cheeses was passed around. Dessert was a fresh fruit salad with ice cream. A very nice red wine (Bordeaux, of course!) was poured freely and included in the price.
The room was large, and had a private toilet and bath. The bed was extremely comfortable, firm and not saggy in the middle.
The village of Bazas is 1 km away. It has an old church and several crafts shops, including a tile maker. We bought a hand painted tile and treasure it as a souvenir of our stay at the chateau, where we were welcomed as if we were family members.
Bordeaux is about 43 miles from the chateau; there is a train station in Langon, 9 miles away.
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