Aix-en-Provence, wine and gastronomy – exploring the Durance
Art of living - Wine and gastronomy
Aix-en-Provence is a city of art, a city surrounded by the sea and salt-water lagoons, but it is also a city shaped by the land. Its vineyards, olive oil and local specialities are all a testament to this. Discover the secret to chocolate-making at Chocolaterie Puyricard and head off to meet passionate winegrowers. The terrace at La Flambée du Lubéron on the banks of the Durance will make a perfect spot for lunch! Make sure you don't miss Château Paradis in Puy-Sainte-Réparade before setting off to Jouques where you'll get to visit three exceptional estates (Château Revelette, Domaine la Chapelle Saint-Bacchi and Domaine Villemus) which all promote organic wine production.
Sugar-coated fun at Puyricard
Chocolaterie de Puyricard Quartier Maliverny Avenue Georges de Fabry 13540 Aix en Provence
To kick start your day in Aix-en-Provence, let the sweet aromas of cocoa tickle your nose. Chocolaterie de Puyricard will show you their artisanal method for making chocolate which they've followed for 40 years and their hundreds of different recipes. After a tour of the kitchens, it's time to taste the chocolate. Something for the sweet tooths!
Heavenly wine at Château Paradis
Château Paradis Quartier Paradis 2900 chemin Du Pommier 13610 Le Puy Sainte Réparade
Next it's time to hit Provence's wine route and head to Château Paradis, endorsed by the Vignobles & Découvertes quality label. The 75-hectare estate has been pouring out quality wine for the past fifty years. Regarding grape varieties, you'll find Cabernet Sauvignon and Grenache Noir among the reds and Vermentino and Clairette among the whites.
An unforgettable meal at La Flambée du Lubéron
La Flambée du Luberon. 6 rue De la Reille 13770 Venelles
For lunch, we recommend you find a table at La Flambée du Lubéron. The chef concocts regional dishes made with home-grown organic produce. Wash your meal down with local wines produced at the Château L'Evesque estate. The panoramic view from the terrace overlooking the Durance is a magical sight you won't forget. If you go there in winter, you can dine inside beside the crackling log fire. A restaurant that comes with the endorsement of the Bottin Gourmand guide.
Organic fine wines at Château Revelette
Château Revelette 620 Chemin de Revelette 13490 Jouques
Continue your wine tour at Château Revelette, an estate in the shadow of Mount Sainte-Victoire surrounded by forests. The wine produced here is authentic thanks to the carefully tended vines fed with sheep manure and trace minerals (Ecocert certified). In all, 11 grape varieties are grown, at between 300 and 400 metres altitude, certified by the Côteaux d'Aix-en-Provence appellation. Highly recommended!
Vines and olives at Chapelle Saint-Bacchi
Domaine La chapelle Saint Bacchi D561 13490 Jouques
Get back on the road in the direction of a small estate, Chapelle Saint-Bacchi, well off the tourist trail. The winery has seven hectares of vines, within the Côteaux d'Aix-en-Provence appellation, benefiting from the generous sunshine and rich soil in these parts. The wine is produced in accordance with organic farming practices and sulphites are used sparingly. Christian Valensisi also tends to 1,600 olive trees. The place is worth a detour alone for its chapel and gardens.
Almond trees and vintage wines at Domaine Villemus
Domaine de Villemus Plateau de Bedes Rd 11 13490 Jouques
Wrap up your wine tour at Domaine Villemus for a fascinating visit you simply cannot miss. Learn all about how the estate practices organic methods to farm vines, olive trees and almond trees while you get to admire the diverse Provençal countryside, from Sainte-Victoire to Concors. After a tour of the crops, you'll be shown around the cellars and the oil mill before tasting a selection of vintages. There is even a gîte with its own private pool on site if you choose to spend the night.
- Sampling the delicious calisson, a sweet speciality of Aix-en-Provence
- Walking in the footsteps of a knight in the medieval city of Trets
- Enjoying a relaxing family day out around Peyrolles Lake
- Admiring the clear views from the top of Mount Sainte
-Victoire- Seeing for yourself the places in Aix-en-Provence that so inspired Cézanne and Vasarely
The best time to visit
- In summer to attend the Music en Vignes festival at Château Paradis
- Mid-September for the St. Michael's festival in Puy-Sainte-Réparade (floats, performances and DJ)
- Winter for the famous '13 desserts' market and the olive oil festival
Art of living, Wine and gastronomy
Aix en Provence, Le Puy Sainte Réparade, Jouques
All year round
Discover other itineraries
Alpilles on the wine route
If you're visiting the Alpilles, then take advantage of the opportunity to travel the Provençal wine route. Go out to meet passionate winegrowers and their exceptional, often organic, wines. You'll get to try artisanal jams in Maussane before venturing onwards to Mas de Gourgonnier in the Baux-de-Provence appellation. Next, head to Domaine de Vallongue and its broken stones (IGP Alpilles). Le Lézard Gourmand will make a refreshing change for lunch before an afternoon spent at Domaine Valdition with its gourmet on-site shop.
Traditional La Montagnette
From Saint-Rémy circling back to Saint-Rémy, take a tour through some of Provence's most traditional villages. After lunch, it's on to the museum dedicated to the French poet Frédéric Mistral (Maillane). Next put your nose to the test at the museum of aromas and perfume (Gravescon) before admiring the candles produced at the Premonstratensians' factory and 'indiennes' (printed textile) at the Provençal fabric museum (Tarascon). Once you've had a look at Saint-Marcellin Chapel (Boulbon), head across to Barbentane and Cristine Darc's santons (figurines) before making your way to the Frigolet distillery. Enjoy the late afternoon sun over Château des Comtes de Provence in Reynard before returning to Saint-Rémy and visiting the Alpilles museum.
Alpilles, wine and oil in the Vallée des Baux-de-Provence
The Vallée des Baux is famed for its excellent wine and olive oil, so indulge yourself with both! A day in Les-Baux-de-Provence is a chance to get to know the land through the Baux-de-Provence and Alpilles appellations. From Domaine Dalmeran head out to see the mysterious Val d’Enfer which has inspired so many artists. At Mas Sainte-Berthe, take the time to feel the particular stony soil under foot before you enjoy delicious cuisine at La Cabro d’Or. The afternoon is dedicated to olive oil production with visits to Moulin Castelas and Mas de la Dame before finishing up at the Maussane cooperative. Time to hit the road!
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