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Third and final day

Today is the last day of the wine weekend but I’m staying on for a few days at Sanary-Sur-Mer on the coastline between Marseilles and Toulon.

We had a leisurely breakfast which took up most of the morning.

After that we went to our first tasting at Domaine Vallee des Glauges in the Alpilles region.

There was the inevitable tour of the production section but viniculture interests me as much as basket weaving and I rather take the view that you once have seen one and you have seen them all.

Of more interest was the owner who not only spoke fluent English but had worked in wineries in Argentina and South Africa before returning to his native Provence.

There was no arrogance of French wine is best. They laid on a tasty picnic on the terrace but unfortunately the Mistral was in full force and made quite a noise.

After lunch we visited Doamine de la Vallongue. This was a slicker operation.

They produce 600,000, bottles a year mainly Roses.

The group were rather “wined out” and I found a comfy armchair and chatted to a delightful fellow traveller in her mid-80s here with her husband of similar age.

Next we went to Eygalleries a picture postcard Provençal village where Hugh Grant has his home.

Of more interest to me were two weddings and we watched the procession from the Town Hall for the civic formalities to the church. They were mainly young people noticeable for much better dress sense than you would see on such occasions in the UK.

Finally dinner was organised in an 17th century house in the Luberon that could have been used for Manon des Sources.

French homes can stay in the family longer and the occupants were a mother in her 70s and her son, one of whom was a cook. He advocates “slow cooking”, a movement that promotes cooking from fruit and veg grown in the land.

We therefore had our first course a selection of raw vegetables like radishes, carrots, celery and tomatoes in a pesto sauce.

This was followed by baked stuffed peppers and tomatoes then cheese and a creamy sponge cake.

I will let Daffers be the judge of all this but I’m find myself hankering for those mini banquets of foie gras and chateubriand sooked by Mireille whom I will be seeing in Sanary . There was also a logistical problem of the table being too small for the copious platters of veg.

This meant that those like me at the end could not access the food and those in the middle had to serve. Its odd that cooks can get so exercised by produce and its sourcing and forget the basics of comfortable seating and easy access to the food.

Still it would be ungracious to criticise too heavily as the family tried so hard and the setting was so attractive.

About Robert Tickler

A man of financial substance, Robert has a wide range of interests and opinions to match. More Posts