Provence dining--need current recs

Old Mar 23rd, 2010, 03:43 AM
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Provence dining--need current recs

We will be in Provence in mid-May, staying in St. Remy, Cassis, and Roussillon. I've been searching this site for dining information but finding that even posts with recent entries frequently started in 2006 or so--the date of my Michelin France red guide that I probably should break down and replace. While I've sorted through much of the old stuff (much of which was very well written and helpful--provided the places are still in business) I'd really like some up-to-date recommendations for the places we'll be staying.

I assume, for instance, that L' Oustau de Baumaniere is still gorgeous, but is the food in decline such that I should look for an alternate show stopper? What are the latest go to places with good food, friendly atmosphere and good wine at moderate prices in the area(s)? Any wonderful young chefs on the rise to be sure to check out?

If you're local or have been there recently --like within the last couple of years or so, please tell me where to go--tempting as that phrase may be, I mean to dine in Provence. Thanks.
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Old Mar 23rd, 2010, 04:00 AM
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ira
 
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Hi JV,

Did you see my trip report?
Ira Returns From 22 Loverly Days in Europe - Sep, 2009
http://www.fodors.com/community/euro...-in-europe.cfm

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Old Mar 23rd, 2010, 04:14 AM
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No, I guess I searched incorrectly. Thanks for the link. I'm on it right now.
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Old Mar 23rd, 2010, 04:18 AM
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Yes, ira, exactly what I've been hoping to find. Thanks. JV
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Old Mar 23rd, 2010, 06:48 AM
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I wish I could help you, you've given me/us so many great recs.

Unfortunately my info is limited to the Var right now, are you planning to venture that far east?
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Old Mar 23rd, 2010, 07:08 AM
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susanna, so glad my info has been helpful to you. I'll have to wait until another trip to pick your brain for Var info. Aix is as far east as we're going this time.
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Old Mar 24th, 2010, 12:54 PM
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We often travel to Provence staying in St. Remy.

We dined at L'Oustau Baumaniere in June 2009. It was splendid. If you can, dine outdoors for lunch or dinner. This is a very expensive restaurant.It took us 17 years to finaly go there. It was worth every Euro. Food, atmosphere, etc. simply sublime.

Anthony Spinelli
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Old Mar 24th, 2010, 02:01 PM
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>ira, Thanks. JV<

Happy to help.

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Old Mar 24th, 2010, 02:38 PM
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If you are staying in Cassis, you likely know that the waterfront is wall-to-wall restaurants. We have eaten indifferent food there but one place that charmed and delighted us for an informal meal was a quai-side restaurant called Huit-et-Demi.

At lunchtime on a Sunday it was packed. We basked in the October sun on their harbourfront terrace. They specialize in large salades composées and also whole-wheat galettes, which can be made up into any number of different dishes -- I had a seafood one.

Abundant servings, superlatively fresh ingredients and ....ça bouge: the joint was jumping.
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Old Mar 24th, 2010, 02:53 PM
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We spend 2 months in France most years, - so that's 30-40 restaurant meals.

In Cassis we really liked Nino. It is on the quayside - but not ON the quayside - it is about 1/2 story up so you don't get the gawkers walking by your table all the time. You may have to get there a bit early - 8 or so to secure a table with a view. It was very crowded at 9:30. We were there in June '07.

Our other favorite restaurants are not in the immediate area of Roussillon & St Remy

Stu Dudley
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Old Mar 25th, 2010, 06:36 AM
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Hi...

Check out Mas du Capoun, between St. Remy and Cavaillon.

Also, in St. Remy, our default cafe is called the Tabac Brasserie des Alpilles. Don't confuse it with the Bistro des Alpilles. The services is super warm and friendly, food good, prices fair.

Have fun!
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Old Mar 25th, 2010, 07:17 AM
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Hi Julie
We ate at L'Atelier de Jean-Luc Rabanel twice, most recently a year ago and the quality and experience hadn't slipped. Located in Arles, about a half hour from St Remy, it is a small restaurant owned and run by a Michelin starred chef. The menu is a tapis-type, set menu of 13 - 17 courses with or without wine pairings. We rank it one of our best dining experiences. Reservations well in advance are advised.
I could probably find some food photos if that would persuade you....
http://www.rabanel.com/
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Old Mar 25th, 2010, 10:16 AM
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On our trip last week, we enjoyed Au Brin de Thym in Arles - casual but very tasty, Cabro D'Or in Les Baux - really excellent food and good service, and La Feniere outside of Cadenet - a little out of your way but very good food. Unfortunately, I can't remember the name of the restaurant in Cassis but it was the last one around the quay on the right side facing the ocean and it had red awnings - maybe Vielle something? Anyway, it was also casual, tasty, and reasonably priced and we enjoyed our lunch in the sun. Hope that helps.
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Old Mar 25th, 2010, 11:05 AM
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Julie, we stayed at the beautiful L'Oustau de Baumoniere a couple of years ago and dined there as well. We loved our accomodations but found our one dinner there disappointing. Both the food and service were only average which was a great disappointment after hearing such good things about it. Perhaps it was just a bad night; we were not the only ones complaining.
However, we had many other wonderful meals in Provence.
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Old Mar 25th, 2010, 11:15 AM
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Thanks all. Several of you are commenting from a more recent perspective about places I had placed on the list from older reports. Good to know that many of the ones that sounded good ARE still good. And Happy Trvlr, sometimes a negative comment can be very positive. I've been racking my brain to try to figure out how we can get back to Baux to have a lunch at Oustau when all the day trips are pretty much set up to places further out than Baux. Now I'll not feel bad about giving Oustau a miss in favor of other places more closely aligned with our travel schedule for the day. kfoster, we could still do Cabro d'Or in Baux for a dinner which doesn't appear to be as much tied to the lunchtime dining by the pool, etc.

So thanks everyone. More welcome, but this is sure a helpful start. Julie
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Old Mar 26th, 2010, 03:57 AM
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bookmarking
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Old Mar 26th, 2010, 08:23 AM
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We had a great dinner at Le Jardin de Frederic in St. Remy in 2008. The foie gras was the best we had on our trip. The couple a few tables away who set their map on fire with the table candle while planning their next days route was entertaining as well.
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Old Mar 30th, 2010, 07:46 AM
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Thanks Ninkette. Now if we can be guaranteed similar entertainment, that could be the deciding factor.
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