Behind the Scenes in Provence

Provence Confidential has been blogging about restaurant launches, cooking classes, food festivals, Provençal wines and spirits as well as tradition and folklore since 2008.

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Organic Wine Show

Organic Wine Show

The 18th edition of Millesime Bio will be held in Montpellier from 24-26 January 2011. 560 vineyards from 12 countries will be present. The show is open exclusively to wine producers who use organic grapes. In accordance with current European legislation a vineyard only qualifies after 3 years of organic farming. 

UNESCO and la Cuisine Française

UNESCO and la Cuisine Française

Just a month ago on November 16, 2010 the United Nations declared that the French meal was among the worlds most cherished cultural treasurers. You can now see The Gastronomic Meal of France on the Representative List of the Intangible Cultural Heritage of Humanity. 

Le Bourriquet

Le Bourriquet

The village of Allauch, located on the outskirts of Marseille which was made famous by Marcel Pagnol in his novels turned movies « Manon des Sources » and «Jean de Florette», is hosting their tradition La Journée de l’Ane. Roughly translated it’s Donkey Day - a day when the villagers pay tribute to the animal that the ancestors most relied upon to haul water, merchandise and building supplies up the rocky slopes of the surrounding hills.

Aix at your doorstep

Aix at your doorstep

My friend, Jill Steenhuis, an Atlanta native, who has lived in Aix-en-Provence for 30 years, is on her way to Jackson, Dallas, Houston, Austin and Atlanta for a few shows. Have a look at her website to view the locations and times of each exhibit: www.jillsteenhuis.com  In 1980 it was Cézanne’s Mont Sainte Victoire paintings that inspired Jill to go to France. And she's been painting Provencal scenes and teaching ever since.

Castanéïculture

Castanéïculture

Corsica, the Var and the Ardeche have the largest production of sweet chestnuts in France. The chestnuts can be ground into flour and used in the preparation of local specialties. Historically not all regions of France had access to wheat flour so the chestnut  was one of the few sources of carbohydrates.

Roman Wine

Roman Wine

Just above Nice, in the village of Saint Jeannet, vines have been grown for centuries. It is believed the purpose of planting vines was initially to stop rockslides and mudslides. The Vignoble des Hautes Collines, the oldest vineyard in the Cote d’Azur, has lovely silvery olive trees and ancient Cyprus trees overlooking the valley below.