In my last blog, I highlighted my favourite and the most beautiful villages of Provence, France, in particular Chateauneuf-du-Pape. Keeping with the theme, today I am going to highlight the beauty of Lourmarin.http://www.provenceweb.fr/e/vaucluse/lourmari/lourmari.htm Lourmarin is also located in the Vaucluse department of Provence about 40 minutes north of Aix en
Provence. If I am completely honest, my desire to visit Lourmain was not based off some great local knowledge or heavy research into beautiful French villages. It was simply that the author Peter Mayle lives nearby. For anyone who has ever read a Peter Mayle book, it is almost a guarantee that you too will fall in love with Provence from the words on the page. So I figured if Peter Mayle lived there, then Lourmarin must be the THE place for the best, most fresh, most authentic food, the best wine, the most interesting people, the most authentic village, and the most beautiful. I also somehow hoped I would meet Peter Mayle an we would quickly become best of friends, united in our adoration of France. Shockingly that didn’t happen. I know, i was surprised too.
But we did visit Lourmarin and it absolutely was worth it. Lourmarin is a quintessential French village. After parking the car (with fairly ample parking for a village) we strolled towards the village centre. @Benton8tor who finds my Peter Mayle fascination the tiniest bit obsessive was gobsmacked. ‘This place is beautiful’. Lourmarin is beautiful, postcard beautiful and it has the unique ability to be busy but somehow feel both languid and chill at the same time. The perfect place both introverts and extroverts. We spent a bit of time poking around the various shops. Lourmarin has beautiful shops with unique items but runs to the more expensive side. Though small, it has plenty of options for shopping. We walked up to the Chateau de Lourmarin.http://www.chateau-de-lourmarin.com/home/. It was well worth it. The Chateau is often home to concert series and Lourmarin hosts it own summer music festival. There is a local products souvenir shop on site an of course a wine store with degustation! We walked back to the centre for lunch. Our first choice looked great and was full but weren’t super eager to give us a table. Our second choice turned out to be delicious. It was just a croque monsieur (a more decadent grilled cheese) and fries but it was good. The bread was amazing. Ben seemed to be especially interested in the mayonnaise they provided that was made with Dijon mustard. However when it comes to fries, I am am old school North American all the way. Ketchup for me! and to their credit, they had it and served it to me.
One of the more strange things about Lourmarin seemed to be that they had 3 or 4 random (not stray ) dogs that would just roam the streets. I loved it! Nary a pigeon in site that way. Lourmarin is known as one of the most beautiful French villages for a reason. It is in the foothills of the Luberon, so the countryside is gorgeous, local wine delicious and very friendly.Even if you don’t meet Peter Mayle, it is well worth it.