Truffles, Wine & Provencal Cuisine Tour
A Provence Gourmet Escape
February 29 – March 9, 2024
10 nights / 11 days
LIMITED TO 7 GUESTS
PRICE AVAILABLE UPON REQUEST – (tour organized for private party request from 2 – 7 participants)
Provence is one of your top destinations for tasting the Black Winter Truffle (also known as the Perigord Truffle). We won’t stop with truffle pleasures though. Continue with me to the baker’s oven for making croissants, the chef’s kitchen for learning Provençal cuisine, cozy fireplaces, memorable lodging locations, and some invigorating countryside walks in the winter sleeping beauty.
This is a perfect tour for friends traveling together. Your evenings are free to enjoy at your leisure. The B&B in Saint Remy is cottage style so some evenings can be enjoyed « alfresco » or light cooking in your studio kitchenette. In Aix, your boutique hotel is just a few minutes walk to some very good restaurants.
Dietary restrictions would make this tour less enjoyable.
NOTE: This is a working itinerary; the final itinerary will be posted and provided to guests closer to the tour date.
Today is arrival day…pick-up can be either at the Marseille airport and the Avignon TGV. Before settling into our lodging in Saint Remy, we’ll embark on a journey to the 14th century in Avignon to get the full story of why the Popes made the biggest Gothic palace in Europe here in Avignon. Time to rest and freshen up at the B&B. Dinner on your own in Saint Remy.
Lunch in Avignon included
It’s market day in Carpentras. Despite the off-season for tourists, this market stays lively with locals (and a few privileged tourists). Along with the traditional items, we’ll be looking for that perfect truffle to enjoy at lunch. With our basket full of regional specialities, we make our way to the Cotes-du Rhone wine region to stop at a Gigondas & Vacqueyras AOC winery. The tour and tasting will be followed by a casual market shopping lunch at the wine domaine. Last, but not least, we cross over to Chateauneuf-du-Pape for exploring this unique terroir and tasting the different styles from more traditional to contemporary. Dinner on your own in Saint Remy.
Market shopping lunch included
Rise & shine…it’s 8:30 am and we have a cooking lesson schedule soon in Avignon. This bistro restaurant opens its doors for us to learn a few tricks and make a great lunch. This cooking experience starts with meeting the chef at the popular Les Halles indoor gourmet market to buy our ingredients and then a short walk to the restaurant to put it all together. The after-lunch digestive walk takes us to one of the greatest Roman endeavors…Le Pont du Gard.
Free dinner in Saint Remy. Cooking lesson lunch included
L’Isle sur la Sorgue is a lively small town all year long. Today we browse both the Provencal market and the antique flea market. Emily will guide you through the history of this town also known as the Little Venice of Provence for its canal lined streets. Should the weather be pleasant, we’ll have a picnic lunch next to the Sorgue River. Two villages today are classed as « most beautiful » in France: Gordes & Roussillon. Unlike the summer months, these villages can be a bit sleepy during winter but the light and reflections (not to mention no tour buses or herds of tourists in your pictures) still bring magic to your day. Dinner on your own in Saint Remy.
Lunch in Isle sur la Sorgue included
We start the day with an atelier (workshop) to make a face cream or cold cream with essential oils distilled at the distillery. Your hardest decision today will be between lavender and everlasting or if you use half & half. With our faces now looking younger, on we go to the city of Arles to discover the well preserved Roman monuments and also continue our steps on Van Gogh’s path. Dinner on your own in Saint Remy.
Bistro lunch in Arles included
Wake up to the music and art at the Carrières de Lumière show near the Les Baux-de-Provence. The former rock quarry holds an inspirational multi-media sure to start your day on the best note ever. After roaming the cobblestone lanes in the village and taking in the views at the top, we’ll make our way to an unforgettable classic French bistro lunch with wine on the table as you arrive and cheese tray making your eyes bigger than your stomach. At 3 pm we meet Patisserie Chef to learn the steps in making French croissants and macaroons. Dinner on your own in Saint Remy.
Countryside bistro lunch included
Craving some more truffles? No worries, today we meet our truffle grower and his dogs. Our hunt will take us out into the peaceful agricultural grounds interlaced with the garrigue (Provencal forest and scrublands). We’ll fill up on a gourmet tasting with all you want champagne and then visit the charming village Lourmarin. Later afternoon we arrive in Aix-en-Provence with check-in to our boutique hotel and then an orientation tour of the city. Dinner at your leisure in Aix.
Lunch (gourmet truffle tasting) included
This morning we meet our chef for a market tour in Aix where we’ll pick up the essential ingredients for making our Provencal home cooked lunch. Before arriving at his house, we’ll swing by the local winery to get our wine. Later afternoon is yours to explore the center of Aix at your leisure. Dinner on your own in Aix.
Cooking lesson lunch included
Oh to see the Mediterranean blue during winter when the air is so pure! Let us venture on the Calanques near Cassis , stroll the fishing port, take a boat out to the everlasting blues of the sea. After our efforts of taking in the remarkable beauty, we’ll sit down at a café with a glass of Cassis white wine (AOC) to absorb it all. Before going back to Aix we’ll stop at two artisan boutiques to marvel at the way clay is worked to perfection: Pottery and Santons makers. Dinner on your own in Aix.
Lunch in Cassis included
Easter is approaching and our chocolate making skills need to be improved. We start the day with an Atelier au Chocolat at one of the oldest chocolate factories in Provence. Lunch will gourmet at a countryside chateau and then to top of the day, we’ll go to the nearby Aix confectionery factory to see how the famous Calissons is made. Dinner on your own in Aix.
Chateau lunch included
Transfer to Marseille airport or Aix TGV for you return trip home.
Transfer NOT included in package price
Activities & Sites Included
- Pont du Gard
- Provencal market Carpentras & L’Isle sur la Sorgue
- Van Gogh asylum in Saint Remy
- Market tour & cooking lesson Avignon
- Market tour & cooking lesson in Aix
- Carrières de Lumières sound & light show
- Patisserie class
- Face cream/cold cream workshop
- Cassis boat tour
- Chocolate making workshop
- Wine tasting in Cotes-du-Rhone AOC (Gigondas, Vacqueyras & Chateauneuf-du-Pape)
- Luberon hilltop villages Gordes & Roussillon
- Isle sur la Sorgue
- Les Baux de Provence
- Saint Remy
- Cotes-du-Rhone wine region
Great things are done by a series of small things brought together.
- All transportation in Emily’s comfortable Mercedes van
- Pick-up either at Marseille airport or Avignon TGV
- Transfer on last day not included
- 6 nights lodging at charming B&B in Saint Remy (cottage style rooms) & 4 nights lodging at boutique hotel in Aix
- All breakfasts
- All lunches
- 1 lunch is gourmet truffle tasting
Does Not Include
- Transportation to/from Provence region
- Transfer to airport/train station on last day
- Dinners (all dinners at your leisure)
- Before and/or after dinner drinks (wine is included during the meals)