Cooking in a French Chateau

It has been suggested that French cuisine originated in the South West of France, the Basque country, but also in the neighboring Bearn. The region is known for the dry and sweet white wines of the Jurancon area, as well as for the red from the Madiran. You will get to taste both as you explore the local cuisine in a true farm-to-market and market-to-table experience.

It is the pittoresque little village of Moumour that you will find your home for the week, a beautifully restored Château set in a luscious park with stunning views of the Pyrénées. Summer residence of the bishops of Oloron Sainte Marie, the nearby town with a medieval cathedral, the chateau is grand and has been totally renovated to modern 5* luxury standards. It is an ideal starting point for exploring the beauties of the National Parc des Pyrénées, which is right around the corner.

Your hosts for the week are the owners, Christine, a sculptor who did the interior decoration of the Château, and Laurent, who will be your Chef and instructor. For partners that do not like to cook, there are many options to occupy your time, from a nearby golf course to a sculpture class with Christine, the library, gymnasium, home cinema, or swimming pool.

Cooking in a French Chateau

It has been suggested that French cuisine originated in the South West of France, the Basque country, but also in the neighboring Bearn. The region is known for the dry and sweet white wines of the Jurancon area, as well as for the red from the Madiran. You will get to taste both as you explore the local cuisine in a true farm-to-market and market-to-table experience.

It is the pittoresque little village of Moumour that you will find your home for the week, a beautifully restored Château set in a luscious park with stunning views of the Pyrénées. Summer residence of the bishops of Oloron Sainte Marie, the nearby town with a medieval cathedral, the chateau is grand and has been totally renovated to modern 5* luxury standards. It is an ideal starting point for exploring the beauties of the National Parc des Pyrénées, which is right around the corner.

Your hosts for the week are the owners, Christine, a sculptor who did the interior decoration of the Château, and Laurent, who will be your Chef and instructor. For partners that do not like to cook, there are many options to occupy your time, from a nearby golf course to a sculpture class with Christine, the library, gymnasium, home cinema, or swimming pool.


Latest Review

No rating given with this review
We loved the chateau, it's absolutely beautiful and has been immaculately renovated. The property feels so historic yet has amazing modern amenities, like high-tech showers. Even at a five-star hotel, I've never seen this! The interior decor is gorgeous, with lavish curtains and plush beds. We also enjoyed the peaceful remote location in the French countryside. Most of all, we appreciated the special attention given to us by our host, Larry. He truly went above and beyond in his hospitality. Since he drove us all around, we had a chance to see so many places that we would never have seen on our own! The region is full of picturesque villages and vineyards and interesting churches. We took a private tour of an interesting church in Monein, and we visited a goat farm and tasted handcrafted goat cheese in the Pyrenees mountains. Larry also drove us to two different three-star Michelin restaurants, an hour away in rainy weather. We also enjoyed the wine-tasting at the chateau and visiting a vineyard in Jurancon. In addition, Larry did a great job in teaching us to cook authentic French cuisine. He is very organized and thorough and is truly passionate about French cuisine. I was especially impressed that he could even get my Dad to cook! That was amazing!! The recipes took some effort, but it was definitely worth it. Larry has amazing attention to detail. He thought of everything and everything was the best, from the Michelin-star restaurants to the private winery tour with lunch including fois gras. Another detail: the croissants we had for breakfast came from a bakery twenty minutes away because they are better than the ones from the village. I'd never tasted croissants that good before! Of course the cuisine that we prepared with Larry was delicious. It was such a treat to have fancy French meals in the elegant chateau dining room. We thoroughly enjoyed being pampered at the Chateau de Lamothe and wish that we could return soon! I only have very minor suggestions for improvement. Perhaps the visit to the goat farm could also include a short nature walk or hike. This was one of the most beautiful natural places I've ever visited, and I would have liked to have spent a bit more time taking in the scenery. Another comment: I absolutely loved the meal in San Sebastian, this was definitely a highlight of the trip. However, somehow I'd imagined that the restaurant would be in the city of San Sebastian (it turned out to be in the outskirts) so I felt slightly disappointed not to see any of San Sebastian. I'm not sure if Larry could include a visit on that day of the tour (it might be too much with the long drive). However, you might mention to International Kitchen guests that they won't actually see San Sebastian on that day of the tour, then they could arrange to visit San Sebastian on their own. Hope that this review is helpful. Sorry it took me so long to complete this survey! Thank you so much for creating this wonderful vacation! Lisa A., CA

Trip Details

Your 5 cooking classes will teach you the techniques and recipes of classical and modern cuisine. Chef Laurent always loved cooking, and after selling his shipping business, he and his wife Christine opened a bed and breakfast in the Château. To improve his already fine cooking skills, Laurent followed intensive courses at the Alain Ducasse institute in Paris, and Bocuse in Lyon, as well as working with chefs in restaurants in Paris, Marseille and Florence. Laurent, or ‘Chef Larry,’ cooks with a passion, not only traditional French dishes like coquilles St. Jacques and crème brulée, but all sorts of sauces, vegetarian and vegan dishes, and even some molecular cooking.


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