The French writer, Jean Giono, once said “Lavender is the soul of Provence”, and I can nothing but agree. And I feel fortunate living in France and being close the the amazing lavender fields in Provence. In mid-July I took a long-weekend and left for a Provence retreat. Aix-En-Provence is reached within 3,5 hours fr Paris with the TGV, and from there I took the bus up to the village Riez. Jim, one of my hosts, kindly picked me up with his car, as La Vudèle is surrounded by vineyards and lavender fields there are no buses going there. It was with full joy I looked at the lavender fields we passed by with the car. I was releaved, the timing was perfect (unlike last year in June), the lavenders were fully in bloom, all I could see was purple fields!
At home Claudia was waiting with their other guests, doing yoga behind the house. Running a place with a holistic view, with respect for both nature and animals I believe you attract guests that are sharing the same values. So I found it very easy to sympathise with the other guests. Claudia and Jim welcomed us with sparkling champagne from the area on the day of my arrival, and toasted for me as their first returning guest and other good news they wanted to share with us.
Couldn’t have asked for a perfect beginning of my stay. During the few days I was there I had a lovely time, totally high on the lavender scent filling the air each time one of the harvesting trucks were driving by. Claudia spoiled us with her gastronomical vegetarian dishes and Jim with his funny stories. No wonder why I returned and hope to return next summer again :-)
La Vudèle – Quinson, Provence
La Vudèle, an old farm now turned into an Organic Bed & Breakfast :-)The lavender fields… The dinner we had outside, overlooking the fields Welcoming with sparkling champagneChampagne from the areaCheers! An awarded rosé from PierreVert, also from the areaFresh and very tasty cucumber soup by Jim. Made with cucumbers, an apple, some Sojacuisine, freshly ground pepper, some salt, a dash of sugar and a hint of Sambal Olek Quinoa precooked, and then blended with Sojacuisine, nutritional yeast, sea sea and freshly ground black pepper and veggies plus garlic and onions. Chocolate mousse with essential lavender oil topped with coconut flakesCold lentil salad with homemade red wine vinegar, onions and our own olive oil and some Za’atar, a beautiful spice mix from the Eastern Mediterranean area with edible mauve flowersood Beignet de tofu, marinated in toasted sesame oil, soy sauce and rice oil, with couscous and seasonal vegetables Every evening I left the dinner table for a while just to capture while the sun was setting… Sunset Sunset seen from behind of the houseSunset behind the vineyard..Delicious lavender custardClaudia and Jim surprised me once again, after our tour at the market in Riez we left to their other house where they have an outdoor pool..with a VIEW..where we had lunch and I got to enjoy the pool while they were preparing the house for their next guests. Saving bee’s and wasps from drowning in the pool…and they never wanted to fly off from me ;-) The starter, melon salad with grilled melon de Cavaillon with ruccola from the garden in a light lemon vinaigrette.Organic spaghetti with a raw courgette-sage pesto with freshly cracked walnuts and nutritional yeastvery delicious!Pain perdu, one of the many delightful and organic breakfasts I had at La Vudèlethe vineyard just behind the houseorganic herbs growing in the garden tomatoes growing Claudia and Jim’s organic garden organic growing The purple lavender fields Couldn’t get enough of this magical sunrise on the day of my departure… Sunrise…beautiful as a painting… Fluffy Mia
and Mimi, both abandonded cats who now have found a home full of love and joy at La Vudèle