Provence Cooking Vacations: French Cooking Schools in La Cadiere d’Azur
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Cooking Passport to Provence
La Cadiere d’Azur, Provence

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About the location: La Cadiere d’Azur is a charming ancient Provencal hilltop village in the heart of the Bandol vineyards, where you will find the love of tradition, good living, fine food and wine has been preserved over the centuries. You home for your five-night culinary tour, the Hostellerie Berard and Spa is a delightful country inn in the heart of the village, set amid a cluster of beautifully restored old buildings, including an eleventh-century monastery with vaulted rooms, all surrounding the pool.

The Hostellerie boasts two wonderful restaurants: one an elegant gastronimic restaurant, the other a more casual but equally charming bistro. The Berard family have owned the property since it opened, and running the hotel is truly a family affair. The lovely and charming Madame Berard may be the person who welcomes you to the hotel; Sandra, her daughter, will assist you with any request, and Chef Rene Berard and his son Jean-Francois will oversee your cooking lessons.

About the cooking lessons: Chef Rene Berard was born in this village, and his roots as you can imagine run deep. His cuisine is richly innovative, yet honors the traditions of Provence and the Mediterranean. He has won numerous awards, including a Michelin star, and is one of Provence's most beloved chefs. His passion is the "cuisine of the sun," epitomized in the wonderful garden and orchard at the cooking school, located a few kilometers from the hotel. It is here that you will gather the fine produce, herbs, and fruit straight from the land. His menus are strictly seasonal, like most things in Provence.

Cooking Passport to Provence Itinerary

Day 1 - Sunday

  • Arrival on your own, followed by a fabulous Welcome Dinner (drinks not included) in the beautiful hotel restaurant.
  • Overnight.

Day 2 - Monday

  • Breakfast and your first cooking lesson in the Bastide. Today, if in season, you will pick some fresh herbs from the garden for use in your recipes.
  • Lunch with wine to follow.
  • In the afternoon a visit to a local producer of Bandol wine for a tasting.
  • Dinner on your own, maybe choose to dine in the hotel restaurant or in one of the local restaurants in town.
  • Overnight.

Day 3 - Tuesday

  • Following breakfast, an excursion to Sanary Harbour to check out all the fabulous fresh fish selections, as well as the fresh produce market. You will choose the ingredients for the fish dish to be prepared in your second lesson, following the market visit.
  • Lunch of your efforts with fine local wine.
  • Afternoon and dinner on your own.
  • Overnight.

Day 4 - Wednesday

  • Breakfast, and your next cooking lesson with the freshest Provencal vegetables.
  • Lunch with wine to follow.
  • An afternoon visit to an elegant estate where top quality olive oil is produced, concluding with a tasting of tapenade made especially for you.
  • Dinner on your own.
  • Overnight.

Day 5 - Thursday

  • Breakfast, followed by your final cooking lesson, devoted to pastries and bread.
  • Lunch with wine.
  • Afternoon visit, perhaps to a honeybee farm.
  • Dinner on your own.
  • Overnight.

Day 6 - Friday

  • Breakfast, followed by a reluctant adieu!