Truffle & Wine Tour
Truffle & Wine Tour in Provence
February 11th – 17th, 2020
Truffle & Wine Tour in Provence for a unique and authentic experience
The Truffle & Wine Tour in Provence is all about escaping the winter blues and enjoying the best part of winter. This is your chance to explore fine food, outstanding wines, Provence truffles and cozy winter fires.
This tour is designed for small group travel giving just 7 people the opportunity to discover Provence without the heat nor the crowds of summer.
This 6 night, 7 day Truffle & Wine tour in Provence is an opportunity to see the culinary world of Provence, taste the delights of truffles at the best time of the year, discover new wines while meeting the wine growers and enjoy the cultural heritage of Provence during the less touristy season. You will leave the tour feeling like you experienced Provence like a local. A rare treat that will forever be a part of your heart.
Imagine you are discovering the countryside in winter fashion; your favorite winter hat and newfound scarf. You are warming your hands up with a coffee or roasted chestnuts at the market. The temperature will be about 10° and the sun, even in winter, never stays away for long. While I cannot guarantee perfect winter weather I can say it’s a lot better in Provence than in Paris. Should it be that one weekend a year when it snows in Provence, well, what a perfect atmosphere to make it feel like Christmas again.
The lodging for this tour will be a perfect mix of city elegance and country charm. Your first night is at the luxury hotel La Mirande in Avignon. The next three nights will at La Madelene, a country mansion near the legendary Mont Ventoux. Then, to finish in fashion, two nights in the fun city of Aix-en-Provence at La Maison d’Aix
Highlights of the Truffle & Wine Tour in Provence
- Truffle hunting with a professional & his dog in the remote hills of the Luberon
- Truffle based meals (including one lunch at truffle grower’s house)
- Visit the Richerenches truffle market to see the pros in action and tour the Medieval village on market day
- Top winery visits and tastings with the winemakers
- 1-night lodging at La Mirande luxury hotel in Avignon
- 3 nights lodging in elegant B&B at the foot of the Mount Ventoux surrounded by vineyards and orchards
- 2 nights lodging in Aix-en-Provence at luxury boutique hotel
- 5 gourmet dinners themed around truffles with fine wines from the region
- Multiple VIP wine tastings including Chateauneuf-du-Pape & Cotes-du-Rhone Cru wines
- 1 cooking lesson followed by lunch
- 2 delicious private home lunches (one at a local wine maker’s house who is also a superb chef & one lunch at the home of the truffle hunter’s house after our truffle hunt)
- 1 lunch along the harbor in Cassis
- 1 lunch at village café to enjoy oysters and Picpoul de Pinet after the market in Richerenches
- All breakfasts
- Guided tours of Avignon, Aix & Cassis
- All transportation while in Provence
- pick-up at Avignon TGV train station on Tuesday, February 11th
- drop-off at Aix TGV train station on Monday, Februry 17th
- Transportation to/from Provence
- Museum entrance tickets should you decide to enter a museum in Avignon and/or Aix during your free time
- 1 dinner on Sunday evening on your own in Aix
- Optional massages and spa time
"The most learned men have been questioned as to the nature of this tuber, and after two thousand years of argument and discussion their answer is the same as it was on the first day: we do not know. The truffles themselves have been interrogated, and have answered simply: eat us and praise the Lord." — Alexandre Dumas
- Pick-up at 2 pm at Avignon TGV train station and check-in into La Mirande hotel
- Private guided tour of the historic center of Avignon
- 7:15 pm – Group dinner at gastronomic bistro in Avignon
Day 2 – Wednesday, 12th
- Leisurely breakfast at La Mirande and then Market tour & Cooking lesson at the Avignon Gourmet indoor market known as Les Halles. Chef Jonathan will lead us on the market tour to pick up our produce for our cooking lesson. A little work and then a tasty lunch…
- Departure from Avignon around 3pm
- 4 pm arrival at country B&B, La Madelene
- 4 – 6:30 pm free time to relax at B&B (take a country walk or schedule a massage at the local spa just down the road)
- 6:30 pm – welcome champagne reception with hors d’oeuvres with dinner to follow at the Madelene next to the fireplace
Day 3 – Thursday, 13th
- After a leisurely breakfast, we will take a back country road to a remote part of the Luberon to meet Nicolas, our local professional truffle farmer. The “hands on” hunt is preceded by a light talk (in English) from the truffle hunter on the history of truffle farming in the area, the technique for hunting and importantly what to look for in a top grade truffle and how best to prepare them.
- Aperitif in the sunny courtyard and lunch ( superb truffled eggs/salad/dessert) prepared by the Truffle farmer and at his charming Mas (Provencal farm house).
- Afternoon visit to the enchanting ochre village in the Luberon, Roussillon.
- Evening truffle-themed dinner at Fleur Bleu, Crestet – the restaurant atmosphere with fireplace and wood tables is especially quaint.
Day 4 – Friday, 14th
- Today is focused on the great wines of the region. We will visit three different Southern Rhone Cru wineries.
- we start in the village of Gigondas with a tasting at Chateau Saint Cosme the oldest producing estate in the appellation.
- On to Clos du Caveau in the Vacqueyras appellation. We will be hosted by owner/winemaker, Henri Bungener, who will guide us on a little vineyard walk (should the weather cooperate) and then a tasting of his wines. Henri is also a talented cook and he will be serving us a traditional Provencal lunch.
- In the afternoon we visit the medieval village of Seguret, classed as one of the most beautiful villages in France. Should time allow, we’ll also stroll through the medieval village of Vaison-la-Romaine.
- Evening dinner at La Madelene, another delicious Provencal meal accompanied by fine wines from Philip’s cellar.
Day 5 – Saturday, 15th
- Morning visit to world famous Richerenches truffle market in the unique territory known as the “Enclave des Papes” (a small territory in the “Kingdom of France” that was ruled by the popes). This market visit will be your opportunity to see the professional truffle buying and selling culture live. The market goes beyond truffles so you’ll also have an opporunity for some souvenir shopping.
- 11 am – sit down at the local café with the oyster vendor next door. Around 1 pm we’ll make our drive south to Aix-en-Provence for 3 pm check-in to your boutique hotel located in a superb 18th-century neighborhood just blocks from the famous Cours Mirabeau.
- 4 – 5:30 pm, private tour of Aix-en-Provence historic center. You may enjoy some boutique shopping after the tour (Aix is shoppers’ paradise)
- Dinner at your leisure this evening.
- After a leisurely morning, we’ll drive 40 minutes to Cassis for a guided village tour and if the weather is nice, a boat tour to see the limestone cliffs that jet out into the deep blue sea.
- Lunch along the habor to enjoy the catch of the day or Misto Frito!
- Return to Aix around 4 pm for free time to relax at B&B, visit a museum or enjoy a massage and spa time.
- 7:15 pm – Farewell dinner together in town
Day 7 – Monday, 17th
- Transfer to Aix TGV train station at 11 am (or at the time needed for your train departure in the morning).
- Possibility of transfer to Marseille airport.