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PROVENCE: GEOGRAPHY MATTERS
“Provence” has more efficacy as a "brand" than as a place. One rarely if ever hears any residents of the Vaucluse say that they live in "Provence." The word is heard frequently in its adjectival form: provençal.
As geography, the term "Provence" suffers abuse. The French consider contemporary 'Provence' to take in three administrative department:
Confusion pops up due to the administrative region PACA: Provence-Alpes-Côte d'Azur.
When "Provence" is employed for the department of the Var (Toulon, St, Tropez) or the department of the Alpes-Maritime (Côte d'Azur) or even the five departments of the Languedoc-Roussillon, it is the "brand" asserting itself.
This is a regional distinction that Peter Mayle buys into 100% in his book Provence A-Z. In fact, if Mayle had been 'geographically-correct,' his iconic best seller would have been titled "A Year in the Luberon."
The Luberon and the Comtat Venaissin, referred to as the “Comtat,” are the two large regions within the Vaulcuse,
Tag Archives: Food
The urge to indulge oneself in the delights of everything Provence is symptomatic of the impoverished assumption that everything in the region is authentic, e.g. made in Provence. Not so. Market day somewhere in Provence. You approach a stand displaying … Continue reading
Michelin Guide 2013: Two New Stars Rise in the Vaucluse – La Closerie in Ansouis and the Restaurant Prévôt in Cavaillon
There is pleasure in the predictable. When Michelin announced that first-time one stars were being awarded to the Restaurant Prévôt in Cavaillon and La Closerie in Ansouis in the Luberon, their gratified clients were hardly astonished as these establishments have … Continue reading
Zen Master Meets Gentleman Farmer Meets Saffron Chef at L’Aube de Safran, a Bed and Breakfast Hideaway in Le Barroux
The backstory of L’Aube Safran (“dawn of saffron” alludes to the time of the day when saffron is harvested): A Parisian couple – Marie an interior designer and Francois an architect – check out of the claustrophobic mash of urban … Continue reading
THE DOMAINE DE CAPELONGUE IN BONNIEUX: FOUR GREAT CHEFS CELEBRATE THE SEASON’S END WITH A “GOURMAND DAY” FRIDAY NOV 4
In the Luberon, many restaurants, hotels and resorts close the weekend after Armistice Day on November 11 and the Calavon Valley hibernates — a chilly slumberous sometimes rain-lashed place — until mid-March. In some quarters Anglo-Saxon types hold to the … Continue reading