Before the Chateau de Versailles, there was the Chateau De Vaux Le Vicomte, built in the 17th Century by one of France most illustrious Minister of Finance, Nicolas Fouquet. He was one of the highly intelligent and wealthy Minister in Louis XIV's court that helped turned around France wealth and capital. But his story was not always sweet and successful. The story of the Chateau told the story of Nicolas Fouquet which was full of jealousy, betrayal, conspiracy and tragedy by other members of the French court who wanted him banished from the Kingdom. The King instead decided to punish Fouquet from the charge of stealing money from the treasury, which Fouquet was innocent, with life imprisonment. But during the glory days of Fouquet living in the Chateau, the gardens and design of the Chateau actually inspired Louis XIV to build Versailles. The gardens of the Chateau, designed by famous French garden designer and landscaper, Le Notre and Le Vau, pioneered the French formal garden style. No wonder King Louis XIV was so jealous that he had to imprison Fouquet so that he could built his grand and majestic Versailles. But the town in Maincy, France is beautiful with tree lined roads as you can see here. The Chateau is still privately owned by the de Vogue family. The Chateau is now celebrating 400 years with several exhibitions and water show. One thing I liked here at the Chateau was their magnificent gift shop and restaurant where I tasted french country cooking at its best! Visiting the Chateau is one of the best day trips that you can join from Paris, sans the huge crowds in Versailles.
The best of french country cooking in the Chateau: haricot verts, roasted chicken with gravy, rice with mushroom, cheesecake and apricot juice.