What Makes You Think That Is French? — Part Deux

The verdict is in.

Many of you commented on my challenge regarding Americanized “French style” and I appreciate your participation!

Fourteen days in France and only one chippy piece of furniture.

The "chippy" table in the Chateau de Roussan.

The “chippy” table in the Chateau de Roussan.

This piece was in the hallway in one of the most elegant and beautiful hotels I have stayed in.

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We arrived in the late afternoon and were losing the sun.

We arrived in the late afternoon and were losing the sun.

The Château de Roussan is a hotel and restaurant just outside of Saint Remy de Provence, dating from the XIII century. Its storied inhabitants include Nostradamus’s family and Diane de Joannis de Roussan who is reputed to have been a favorite of Louis XIV.

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Our room was spacious and charming.

IMG_7998 IMG_8002With a beautiful, modern bathroom (sorry these are out of focus, but I wanted to include them).

IMG_7991 IMG_7990 IMG_7992The public spaces were very grand.

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We also had an eight course dinner in the dining room that was prearranged by our tour guide, Philip Haslet of Unique Provence Travel. More on that another day, but it was amazing!

If you ever get a chance to stay at the Chateau de Roussan, I highly recommend it.

Farmer’s Market in Aix-en-Provence

And….. I’m back from France full of inspiring adventures to share with you!

Today we’re visiting the Farmers’ Market in Aix-en-Provence. Since we were there on a Monday, we toured and shopped the Marché Place Richelme: a local producers market on Place Richelme near the city hall, daily 9:00AM – 12:30PM.

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In early April, there isn’t much produce grown locally as it is early in the season. The strawberries, however, were just starting and we saw tender new asparagus.

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Other produce is imported from Spain and warmer climates, but the produce is still quite fresh because it doesn’t have to be shipped very far (France is the size of Texas).

DSC03981 DSC03982 DSC03983 DSC03986 DSC03987 DSC03995 DSC03998 DSC04000 DSC04002 DSC04003 DSC04004Then there was the cheese! The Provençal locals take their cheese very seriously. Their olive oils, tapenades, sausages and pates are also palate – pleasers.

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I gave this vendor my business card and told her to watch for her farmstand on my blog.

DSC03989 DSC03988 DSC03990 DSC03991 DSC03992 DSC03993What do you think of when you think about the south of France? Do you visualize fields of lavender?

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We visited this abbey, but it was too early in the season for the lavender to be flowering.

Local farmers sell many types of lavender products in the markets and tourist shops. Our group bought lavender sachets and the famous Savon de Marseille soap in the market.

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I found the market to be very inspirational and now that I’m home, I’m back to cooking with fresh and organically-grown ingredients. I can’t wait until our own farmers’ markets open in early June!