Wines of Châteauneuf-du-Pape
Wines of Châteauneuf-du-Pape

Food Holidays

PROVENCE - Lavender, goat’s cheese and Châteauneuf-du-Pape

Provence is one of the great regions of Europe for the foodie traveller. Here, time-honoured French culinary traditions meet the vibrant, sun-ripened produce and fresh fish of the Mediterranean, rustic country cooking and some of the continent’s finest wine appellations. The landscapes too are mesmerising – vine-carpeted hillsides, colourful fruit groves and postcard-pretty villages. This short break takes you off-the-beaten-track to charming Cavaillon, famed for its melons, from which we discover a host of sublime Provençal tastes, including Châteauneuf-du-Pape wine, traditional sweets and creamy goat’s cheese, as well as some the most memorable towns, villages and views.

What's included?

  •  Flights
  •  Accommodation
  •  Meals - as per the itinerary
  •  Expert guide
  •  All tastings in the itinerary

Today's Price

Deposit: £250 Single supplement: £130

Tour highlights:

  • A cookery class at the outstanding Provence Gourmet in Aix-en-Provence
  • Sample the Provençal sweet calisson at its prestigious makers
  • Wine tasting at a Châteauneuf-du-Pape vineyard, Domaine Mousset
  • Learn more about the lavender for which Provence is so renowned
  • Savour the candied fruit and chocolate delights of Confiserie St Denis
  • Watch and sample the making of goat’s cheese and taste it fresh

Tour details

Dates 19 October 2020 - 23 October 2020
Duration 5 days
Today's Price
Deposit: £250 Single supplement: £130 Balance due by 27 July 2020
Tour code G05A20

Book Now or call 01453 823328 if you have any questions

19 October 2020: Itinerary

We fly from London to Marseilles early afternoon and transfer to our elegant hotel in Cavaillon, the ‘melon capital’ of France (which every July hosts a Melon Festival). Dinner is provided this evening.

Meals include: Dinner

Hotel: Centrally located hotel

Provence Gourmet, in the delightful town of Aix-en-Provence, is famed for its cookery class, which introduces the produce and flavours of the region in an endlessly engaging way. We join them this morning to learn the secrets of Provençal cuisine and create some mouthwatering dishes of our own, which we enjoy for lunch.

In the afternoon, we proceed to the Musée Calissons, dedicated to all things calisson, the traditional sweet of Provence. This much-loved confection is made from candied fruit (usually melon) and ground almonds, covered with royal icing. The name is thought to derive from the Provencal term ‘di calin soun’, meaning ‘they are hugs’, and calissons still bring as much comfort and pleasure as they have done for hundreds of years. With many high-quality restaurants from which to choose in Cavaillon, the evening is at leisure for you to dine independently.

Meals include: Breakfast, Lunch

Hotel: Centrally located hotel

One of the great names in French wine-making is Châteauneuf-du-Pape, an AOC-accredited region of exceptional quality vineyards located around the villages of Châteauneuf-du-Pape, Bédarrides, Courthézon and Sorgues. As the name suggests, this region is strongly linked with papal history, as far back as the Avignon Papacy of 1309-76, when the French popes helped develop viticulture around their new seat of power. Typically, the terroir is stony, which helps retain heat during the night and moisture during the summer, resulting in quicker maturing grapes and eventually tannin-rich, full-bodied wines that age well. We stop at Château Fines Roches, commanding panoramic views of the surrounding vineyards, for a taste of the sublime wine produced in the neighbouring Domaine Mousset. Lunch is provided in this splendid setting.

We return to Cavaillon mid-afternoon, and the afternoon and evening are free to make your own cultural and culinary explorations.

Meals include: Breakfast, Lunch

Hotel: Centrally located hotel

Few scents and sights define Provence as evocatively as lavender. Though the mauve carpets of lavender will have been harvested in July and August, before our arrival, there is still much to appreciate at the Lavender Museum of Cabrières d’Avignon. Housed in a traditional Provençal stone house, this lovely museum describes the many virtues of this most versatile plant, with historic stills used in the distillation process and other more fragrant exhibits.

A few minutes up the road is Beaumettes, home to the Confiserie St Denis, producer of the highest quality candied fruits (fruits confits) and chocolate. We enjoy an indulgent tasting from their selection, then proceed to Lourmarin, considered one of the most beautiful villages in France, where there is time to wander and stop for lunch (not included).

En route back to Cavaillon, we call in at the Ferme du Bregalon, a farm which produces a very highly regarded goat’s cheese. The cheese can be created within two days of milking the goats, so this is the chance to taste a great flavour of Provence at its freshest and most delicious. Dinner is provided at the hotel or quality local restaurant this evening.

Meals include: Breakfast, Dinner

Hotel: Centrally located hotel

A further morning at leisure invites a little shopping for Provençal treats to take home. After an independent lunch, we transfer to Marseilles for our flight home.

Meals include: Breakfast

  • Provence Gourmet cookery class, with lunch to follow
  • Calisson tasting
  • Châteauneuf-du-Pape wine tasting
  • Visit to Lavender Museum
  • Candied fruit/chocolate tasting
  • A tasting of Goat’s cheese

19 October 2020: Additional Info

19 October 2020: Accommodation

All of our destinations are known for their rich, cultural heritage, as well as their cuisine, and these holidays invite you to appreciate some magical towns and cities. We will be staying in high quality (generally 3*-4*) hotels.

19 October 2020: Enquiries

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