If you’re wondering about this title, it’s a literal English translation of the French “Amuse Bouche” which is a restaurant term for a little tasting sent from the kitchen before the appetizer course. It is common in fine dining restaurants and usually an unexpected surprise for the diner, a special tease for the palate while the meal is being prepared. Depending on the restaurant’s style and regional cuisine, it could be as simple as a tapenade toast or as extravagant as, well, as you might imagine.
Currently, diners at Brasserie L’Oustau receive a bite-size cheese and choux pastry called gougères. Believed to have originated in Burgundy and most definitely French, there is really no comparison in other cuisines of the world. The gougère has a subtle flavor of cheese in an airy, moist, tender and lightly browned pastry. The flavor can be modified by the type of cheese, herbs or fillings but at Brasserie L’Oustau we use one of the classic cheeses — gruyere, emmentaler or comté — and serve them warmed.
We have developed a reliable recipe and bake them using a practiced procedure. It is quite often the simplest foods that present a challenge, and the gougère is a good example of this. We’ve included a link here to a site that will take you to gougère recipes and ideas to try at home, but you are certainly welcome to come taste ours anytime.