Excited about Food in Provence – 2023 edition

A Culinary Adventure on the Mediterranean Coast hosted by award winning cookbook author Cheryl Alters Jamision

June 10-17, 2023

Hosted by four-time James Beard Foundation award-winning cookbook author, Cheryl is a lifelong Francophile. She made her first trip to France nearly five decades ago, in college, and has spent as much time as she could there. Her twenty cookbooks, many written with her late husband Bill—including Smoke & Spice, American Home Cooking, and The Big Book of Outdoor Cooking & Entertaining—have been widely recognized as standard setters, and have sold some 2 million copies. For a decade, she led culinary adventure groups to the Dordogne. After a few years’ hiatus, she has decided it’s time again to share her love of the country’s South with other food- and wine-obsessed travelers, by pairing up with Absolutely Southern France.

Saturday, June 10 : Welcome to Provence !

Your culinary adventure in the south of France begins with airport and train station transfers from Marseille airport or Avignon TGV train station to settle into your gorgeous provencal estate near St Remy.  Along the numerous amenities, the villa  is equipped with  a tennis court and heated  swimming pool. Your welcome cocktail will be followed by a delicious buffet with Cheryl and other food lovers on your Provence culinary adventure.

Sunday, June 11 : Roussillon & Coutellet 

Your day will start by learning all you need to know about lavender at the Lavender Museum in Coustellet. Your next  stop will be in the colorful village of  Roussillon, where you’ll be blown away by the occre. For photo ops,  you’ll take a short and easy hiking trail through a former ochre quarry and the surrounding woods.      After lunch in Menerbes overlooking the provecal countryside, followed by a photo of of Gordes. Your lavender immersion will end at the iconic  Senanque  Abbaye for a guided tour and more photo ops of the surrounding lavender fields. Back at the villa, you’ll don your Excited About Food aprons for some cooking fun with Cheryl.

Monday, June 12: Marseille & Truffle hunt   

You cannot leave Marseille without picking up some olive oil based soap at the oldest producer’s workshop where you will be taken for a guided tour.   Next will be a stroll to the vibrant Noailles district featured in the NYT as the up and coming district with a wide range of exotic shops and restaurants. A stop will be made at Maison Empereur boutique with a wide and sometimes “unusual” array of cookware, hardware supplies since 1827. Lunch will be at the iconic Rhul renowned for its bouillabaisse.   After lunch, you’ll be taken for a photo op at the iconique Notre Dame de la Garde basilica overlooking Marseille. On your way back to St Remy, you’ll be taken to a countryside private home  for a truffle hunt with dogs trained by Johan on his family property followed by a truffle based buffet and champagne bien sur !

Tuesday, June 20 : Wine & Olive Oil 

You will be introduced to a variety of wines as you visit a local vineyard at a charming family owned Mas straight out of your best south of France dreams. There will be a stroll amongst the vines, so dress for the country and be sure to bring a hat.  After your picnic lunch in the vineyard, your culinary adventure will continue with a visit to  a women owned olive mill in a small Provençal village in the heart of the Alpilles. The Sourdon family, through four generations, has produced its fine olive oil in a typical Mas from the 12th century. Dinner will be back in St Remy at a charming  french brasserie.

Wednesday, June 13 : St Rémy & Pétanque

Today is the day to pick up a few souvenirs and gift items at St Remy’s lively provencal morning street market. After lunch, You’ll understand the sources of inspiration for a number of Van Gogh’s works after your visit to the Saint Paul de Mausole hospital where he was interned.  Back at the villa you’ll be getting private intruction from a local petanque expert   followed by a tournament with prizes and pastis bien sur !
Cooking fun with Cheryl

Thursday, June 14 :   Les Baux de Provence & lavender workshop 

We will travel along a picturesque route to the Carrière des Lumières that sits below the village of Les Baux de Provence.  You will walk through the cavernous quarry, transformed into a spectacular art gallery to experience an audio-visual masterpiece.     Lunch will be at Bistrot du Paradou, a charming provencal bastide transformed into a restaurant frequented by jet setters.  After lunch,  you’ll head back to the lavender fields where you will be greeted by Elsa for a lavender wands workshop.

Cooking fun with Cheryl and guest star chef Jean Pierre Novi.

Friday, June 15 : Cassis & Secret garden   

Before arriving in Cassis, you’ll be driven to a secret garden  to  be greeted by chef Berard of the Hostellerie Berard for a garden tour followed by an apéro workshop in his countryside bastide. You’ll be able to further indulge at lunch which will be at his restaurant in la Cadière d’Azur. After lunch, you will have some free time to stroll the quaint seaside town of Cassis surrounded by the stunning calanques.    As all good things must come to an end,  your dinner will be spectacular  at the Michelin starred Beaumanière Cabro d’Or.

Saturday, June 15  : Au revoir !

Last croissant and café au lait, transfers to Marseille airport, Marseille train station or Avignon high speed train station

 

 

About Cheryl

A four-time James Beard Foundation award-winning cookbook author, Cheryl is a lifelong Francophile. She made her first trip to France nearly five decades ago, in college, and has spent as much time as she could there, as well as in the French Caribbean. Cheryl has taught cooking classes in venues across the United States, as well as appeared numerous times on the Food Network, NBC’s Today Show, and on other television internationally, from China to the UK. She’s the former culinary editor of New Mexico magazine and host of a weekly food radio show and podcast, Heating It Up. Her twenty cookbooks, many written with her late husband Bill—including Smoke & SpiceAmerican Home Cooking, and The Big Book of Outdoor Cooking & Entertaining—have been widely recognized as standard setters, and have sold some 2 million copies. For a decade, she led culinary adventure groups to the Dordogne. After a few years’ hiatus, she has decided it’s time again to share her love of the country’s South with other food- and wine-obsessed travelers, by pairing up with Absolutely Southern France. She lives just outside of Santa Fe, New Mexico with a small flock of hens with outsize personalities. Find out more about Cheryl on her website, excitedaboutfood.com. Cheryl is also a guest contributor to our blog page . Read here what she has to say about her passion for the south of France.

 

Deposit
To secure a place on our tour, we ask that you fill in our reservation form, which indicates that your deposit of 30% will be required to secure your space. The balance will be due 2 months prior to the tour.

Included
All meals including wine, gratuities ( guides & restaurants) and taxes, professional tour facilitator/guide, activities and entrance fees, transportation and accommodation  as indicated.

Not included
Roundtrip airfare to France, train to the south of France, any personal souvenirs or purchases, additional wine, beer or spirits beyond what is offered at meals, travel insurance (highly recommended) and trip medical coverage (required for travelers over 50 years of age).

Terms and Conditions
If insufficient numbers of participants register for the tour , in the event of conditions deemed unsafe for our clients, the tour may be cancelled or postponed. If Cheryl Alters Jamison is unable to travel, the tour will be postponed.
While we endeavor to operate all trips as described,  we reserve the right to change the trip itinerary owing to circumstances beyond our control. Any changes will be of similar or superior quality and  content.

Cancellation Policy

This is a packaged group  tour and non-refundable with no refunds even in case of injury or illness or personal emergency. Cancellation must be notified by email to nancy@absolutelysouthernfrance.com. We highly recommend that you purchase travel insurance including medical assistance and cancellation.  If you get sick from Covid or any other disease, before the trip departs or during it you will need to have your own medical and trip cancellation insurance to cover any costs incurred.

Payment
We accept Mastercard, Visa and Amex.

Travel with insurance – and rest assured 

Check out  SquareMouth, insurance specialists that compare coverage, including Covid, from 19 reputable providers. Just select what best suits you (Covid-19 cancellation,  Covid-19 medical, cancellation, interruption, medical evacuation…) . Prices are reasonable and well worth it for a stress free trip.

Arrival and Departure
You will be welcomed on arrival by Cheryl at a food and wine pairing  buffet on June 17. Ttransfers to your accommodation on the first day and the last day of the tour to and from Marseille airport and Avignon TGV train station are included.

What to Pack
Phone chargers, medication, hat, sunscreen, bug repellent, comfortable walking shoes. Temperatures should be pleasant. We expect clear sunny skies with average daytime temperatures between 29C / 84,2F and overnight lows of 16C / 60,8F.

Accommodation
Your vacation home away from home will be in a fully private gorgeous estate near St Rémy equipped with heated swimming pool, tennis courts and petanque field.

Transportation
You will be travelling in a comfortable air- conditioned coach driven by a professional driver.

Additional Services
Absolutely Southern France is happy to assist with roomate matching as well as pre and post tour travel arrangements in France.

 

 

CONTACT US

To reserve your spot or request additional information,  please fill out the form below. Nancy will then contact you to discuss the tour details and arrange your booking.

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Tour Details

Dates: June 10-17, 2023
Duration: 8 days, 7 nights
Cost: 5275 euros in single / 4850 euros in twin or double
Participants: 10

Tour HIGHLIGHTS

  • 3 hands-on cooking workshops with Cheryl Jamison 4-time James Beard award winning cookbook author
  • Playing pétanque beneath plane trees, with a glass of pastis at hand
  • Truffle hunting with dogs and champagne
  • Lavender wands workshop
  • Wine tasting and picnic lunch in vineyard
  • Soap factory tour, olive oil mill tour,
  • Garden tour and apéritif workshop with starred chef
  • Light show in Les Baux quarries

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