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Provence cooking schools and restaurants

JJLOVESFOOD Mar 22, 2009 09:05 AM

Hey all. Staying in a town called Lambesc inbetween Avignon and Aix en Provence. Any recommendations?? Thank you.

  1. Abra Mar 22, 2009 11:53 PM

    For a superb lunch I suggest La Cabro D'Or in Les Baux de Provence. Their website doesn't seem to have an English version, but you can read about our lunch and see pictures here http://frenchletters.wordpress.com/20...

    It's elegant, delicious, pricey, and everything you want in a fancy and beautiful French restaurant without being stuffy.

    1. f
      fanofprovence Apr 21, 2009 07:06 AM

      We had a fabulous morning and lunch at Barbara's cooking class in Vaison la Romaine (35 min drive from Avignon). Check out her website: www.cuisinedeprovence.com
      She specializes in Provencal homecooking. Have fun!

      1. ChefJune Apr 21, 2009 11:18 AM

        No need to drive all that way. There's an excellent opportunity in Arles. Check out this web site:

        1. ChefJune Apr 21, 2009 11:18 AM

          and another in St. Remy de Provence: http://www.mascornud.com/seasons.html...

          5 Replies
          1. re: ChefJune
            Sherri Apr 21, 2009 12:09 PM

            I did not have a good experience at mas de cornud and definitely would not recommend it.

            1. re: Sherri
              sderham Apr 29, 2009 11:45 AM

              Hi, Sherri,

              Could you briefly explain what the problem was at the Mas de Cornud?

              Thank you

              1. re: sderham
                Sherri Apr 29, 2009 02:26 PM

                The physical plant of Mas de Cornud could be quite lovely. However, owner, David Carpita, leaves much to be desired as a gracious host. We encountered erroneous billing with every error in favor of the house; promised accommodations did not materialize yet we were billed for them; we were charged for our own beer which was stored in the fridge with permission; threadbare “Spuds MacKenzie” towels at the (dirty) pool are not what one expects – I could elaborate but why?

                We nicknamed the Mas de Cornud “The House of Can’t, Won’t, Doesn’t Work, Should Have Been and No” as those words summed up our experience. I wouldn’t dream of returning to try his hospitality again.

                1. re: Sherri
                  ChefJune May 7, 2009 06:31 AM

                  I have to say that your experience is entirely UNlike any I or any of my clients or friends have ever had there.

              2. re: Sherri
                BerryGood Jun 29, 2010 04:24 AM

                As someone who just spent time at Mas de Cornud, both Nito and David are lovely, hardworking, gracious hosts, and the cooking classes were superb. I would go back in a heartbeat! If you read their recommendations on TripAdvisor, I think that says it all.

            2. f
              fatgirlslim Apr 30, 2009 05:27 AM

              You could try www.lescarmes.com, it's nearer to Avignon than Aix. Owned by an English family with their Son as the Chef. He runs lessons in the afternoon and you eat in the evening- beautiful courtyard setting. Even if you don’t end up doing the lessons it's a great place to eat and fab value for money: 4 courses, champagne, wine and coffee €35 per person. The Chef has 10 years experience in 2 star Michelin restaurants so the quality is unbelievable.

              3 Replies
              1. re: fatgirlslim
                whatsfordinner May 3, 2009 02:15 PM

                I'll second the Les Carmes rec! It's just outside Il sur la Sorgue. I had one of my favorite meals in France there and the family is lovely. I believe the son/chef trained in a Michelin starred restaurant.

                1. re: whatsfordinner
                  noelb May 6, 2009 01:34 PM

                  We are in Avignon at present , delightful meal with good service a L'Isle Sonnante , about E 100 for two with wine, modern & subtle food, the only (relative) disappointment was a less than stellar cheese plate.
                  In Villeneuve, within easy walking distance of central Avignon, we ate similarly good food at L'estaminet. This time formidable cheese , charming small restaurant and sevice.
                  Lunch tomorrow at Christian Etienne , will follow up

                  1. re: whatsfordinner
                    petertwister May 7, 2009 03:50 PM

                    I'll have to "third" Les Carmes as I've just been there today. I had a 2-hour cooking class with my wife. Cost was 80E for a couple for 2 hours. We were able to be as hands on or off as we wanted. But this is not the type of cooking class that you make a full 3-course meal with your hands and eat them afterwards. It was more like getting an insight into the preparation of ingredients, rather than getting a 3-course meal done within the 2 hours. James was very good in sharing his skills and ideas.

                    We had a look at the BnB accomodation. The "Tower" suites look very newly renovated and are big. Very nice marble bathrooms. Room overlooking a very beautiful courtyard and pool.

                    We stayed for dinner. 35E per person including pre-dinner champagne/escargot, amuse bouche, 3-courses, wine and coffee. We loved all courses. I think this is terrific value, and it was served by a cheerful host family.

                    I would not hesitate to book this place (for dinner and/or BnB) next time I am in Provence.

                2. b
                  beckypoostchi May 8, 2009 08:00 AM

                  La Mirande in Avignon! all my friends said it was amazing. I am booked for May

                  1 Reply
                  1. re: beckypoostchi
                    PhilD May 8, 2009 09:57 AM

                    Becky - we had lunch there, it has a wonderful little garden where they set out tables if it is sunny. It was indeed very good; a great lunch. I am surprised by how few people recommend it, it was our best meal in Avignon including Christian Etienne.

                    I notice there is a new 1* in Avignon - "Le Saule Pleureur" - has anyone been?

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