At the crossroads of Sologne, Gâtinais and Val de Loire, in an ancient posting house, with a thatched roof and half timberings all covered with virgin vines, Françoise Dépée is ready to open doors wide, to welcome us inside the hostel of the Templiers.
The history of Auberge des Templiers can be traced back to 1160 when Major General of the Templars Everard des Barres built a guars post on the site, which was later destroyed Philippe le Bel and much later, in 1946, renewed by the Depee family. One of the eight establishments in the original group of Relais & Châteaux (originally ‘Relais de Campagne’), Auberge des Templiers has been around for more than 65 years and continues to be one of the most elegant and beautiful places to stay in the region. Defined by style, luxury and refinement, Auberge des Templiers exemplify the art of fine living in the French countryside.
Haute cuisine is served at the hotel’s fine dining restaurant, Les Bezards, including classic country dishes like ravioli of mild mushrooms and velouté with truffle jus. A great way to start is with a mille-feuilles of liver with stewed apples, or an onion and parsley sauce with virgin oil followed by a Gâtinais chicken, all terra-cotta crusted, and finish with a crispy-crunchy pineapple covered with glazed coconut. The hotel also houses an impressive collection of local wines. The dining room is tastefully decorated with soft carpets, Aubusson tapestries, burnished leather, plush fabrics, elegant oak beams, and a romantic fireplace.
Very near the Loire, with its pinky sand and its thousand castles, you will find the quite renowned museum of the crockery of Gien, as well as a museum of hunting and shooting in this region where, as soon as Autumn peeps in, the hunters close up and crowd hurriedly.