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Flavors of the Provincial French Countryside

(Cooking, Wine Tasting, Touring and Michelin-Star Dining in the Loire Valley)

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Priced From
$4,298 USD *
For One Person, Double Occupancy
* Plus taxes. Tours sold on an availability basis.
7 days | 6 nights

A Gourmand's Delight in the Loire Valley
Cooking, Wine Tasting & Michelin-Star Dining!

This gourmand's delight features hands-on cooking, cooking demonstrations, exploring local sites and villages, artisan food makers, lunch with hand-selected wines at the remarkable Michelin-starred Fontevraud Le Restaurant and a walking or cycling tour along a dedicated path through vineyards close to the Loire River (by car for those less able). Start on Sunday, wrap up Saturday and savor the full breadth and variety of every flavorful moment in-between. Not just another cooking school, we created intimate experiences that focus on your desires as a traveler and culinary explorer. We share the best of what this gorgeous region has to offer during an amazing weeklong adventure. (Tours are designed as gentle experiences. Some walking, climbing stairs, and mild hiking may be required. However, if you have mobility issues, we can organize the trip to accommodate your needs. Chefs, Hosts and Guides all speak fluent English.)

Flavors of the Provincial French Countryside

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Small Group Friendly
Itinerary Accommodations Map FAQ
Please note: Tour inclusions can change depending upon seasonality and weather conditions.
6 Nights Boutique Accommodation
Round-Trip Private Train Station Transfers
Farmhouse Breakfast Buffet Every Morning
Four Cooking Sessions with Lunch and Wine
Dinners as Described in Itinerary with Selected Wines
Two Cooking Demonstrations
Guided Tour of Royal Fortress of Chinon
Michelin Star Multi-Course Lunch & Wine Pairing
Guided Food Market Tour with Chef
Tour of a Sparkling Wine House
Wine Cocktail Demonstration and Tasting
While our tours are designed as soft adventure experiences, walking, climbing stairs, and in rare cases mild hiking may be required. If you have mobility issues, you should speak with one of our culinary travel specialists to determine if this tour is appropriate for your situation.
This tour runs Monday to Sunday. April 3rd to 9th, May 15th - 21st, June 12th - 18th, September 4th - 10th, October 2nd - 8th and November 20 - 26, 2023.
Please note: Actual itineraries are subject to change due to seasonality.
(click item for details)
Day 1
Arrival and Transfer to Manoir Miti You will be welcomed at Poitiers Station (direct connection from both Paris Montparnasse and Paris CDG Airport) in the afternoon and together we will make the 50-minute journey to Manoir Miti.
Dessert Demonstration and Welcome Dinner Once you have taken some time to settle into your room, you will be invited to join Chef Aaron in the kitchen as he prepares dessert. He will guide you through a tasting of local wines before sitting down to a delightful three-course dinner served with hand-picked wines. After dinner you may relax with an after-dinner drink in the lounge or library, then it's off for a pleasant night's rest in your charming and cozy en suite room.
Day 2
Farmhouse Breakfast Each Morning Each morning you will enjoy a bountiful farmhouse breakfast of local breads, pastries, yogurts, cereals, home-made jellies and jams along with other regional delights.
Farmer's Market Shopping Tour After breakfast you will head off for a tour and shopping trip to a local farmer's market. Located in beautiful, inspiring surroundings, all these markets offer an abundance of visual delight, treats to sample and opportunities to explore local history and culture. You will also be given time to wander around, enjoy a coffee and a pastry or just take time to daydream.
Hands-On Cooking Class with Dinner After our market excursion, we return to the farmhouse to enjoy a market lunch consisting of the goodies picked up during the shopping trip. After lunch, the group will plan a menu for dinner and dive into a cookery session where you learn techniques and then prepare dinner. You will have an early evening break to freshen up and catch your breath before sitting down together to enjoy the dinner we prepared together.
Day 3
Farmhouse Breakfast Each Morning Each morning you will enjoy a bountiful farmhouse breakfast of local breads, pastries, yogurts, cereals, home-made jellies and jams along with other regional delights.
Tour of Historic Chinon and Dinner at Manoir Miti After breakfast, we will visit the historic city of Chinon, with its magnificent fortress and largely intact medieval village below. Chinon is one of the most important wine towns of the Loire, and there will be opportunities to taste the local wines. Lunch will be on your own today as there are several restaurants to choose from. You can join the group or head out on your own. In the afternoon we return home with a tarte des vigneronne, part of this evening's light dinner menu.
Day 4
Farmhouse Breakfast Each Morning Each morning you will enjoy a bountiful farmhouse breakfast of local breads, pastries, yogurts, cereals, home-made jellies and jams along with other regional delights.
Hands-On Cookery Session | Local Winemaker & Wine Tasting After breakfast today, the group will have a cookery session where you will tackle a complex dish, such as Cassoulet, or try out a technique that fits your interests. After lunch we'll visit a local winemaker and talk about their wines along with a wine tasting. The afternoon will be relaxed, and open to explore on your own.
Apero (French Tapas) Dinner The group will gather again in the kitchen early evening and learn some new wine cocktails. Sip your libations while watching and/or participating in a demonstration of small plates that you'll enjoy as part of an "Apero" (French Tapas) dinner party.
Day 5
Farmhouse Breakfast Each Morning Each morning you will enjoy a bountiful farmhouse breakfast of local breads, pastries, yogurts, cereals, home-made jellies and jams along with other regional delights.
Fontevraud l'Abbaye Visit | Michelin Star Lunch with Wine Pairing After breakfast, we'll head for Fontevraud l'Abbaye. This celebrated abbey is the resting place of Henry II, Eleanor of Aquitaine, Richard "Lionheart" and Isabel of Angouleme. In the years after the revolution, it was put to use as a prison. Since the early 1960's it has been painstakingly restored, building by building. One of these beautiful buildings now houses a remarkable Michelin starred restaurant, and it is there that we will take lunch. The setting is stunning as is the food, and it will be accompanied by some of the finest regional wines selected by the sommelier. You will have the chance to visit the abbey grounds both before and after lunch. We will enjoy a light dinner of regional cheeses with bread, crackers and a pear and leaf salad back at the Manor this evening. There will be an option of dessert if you still have any room left!
Day 6
Farmhouse Breakfast Each Morning Each morning you will enjoy a bountiful farmhouse breakfast of local breads, pastries, yogurts, cereals, home-made jellies and jams along with other regional delights.
Tour of the Loire between Saumur and Chinon | Lunch | Farewell Dinner Today, after breakfast, you'll embark on a gentle bicycle / walking tour through the vineyards along the Loire on a dedicated path between Saumur and Chinon. We'll take a leisurely pace, visiting a vineyard and other sites along the way (between 4 and 5 miles), enjoying lunch and a fun-filled afternoon on this very scenic route. We will happily provide vehicle support for anyone not wishing to walk or cycle. The group will return for a cooking technique demonstration, followed by a farewell dinner.
Day 7
Final Cooking Session | Brunch | Transfers to Train Station On your final morning the group will have a short cooking session, followed by brunch and then our farewells. You will be taken to the station to catch your train as you bid a bittersweet Au revoir to your temporary home in the Loire Valley.
Maison de Maître
During your culinary vacation, you will stay onsite at the 19th Century Manor House that has been lovingly renovated to offer the charms of an old French Country House with the comforts and amenities of a well-appointed modern property. It exudes relaxation and indulgence with a stunning large cook's kitchen and dining area (where we hold our cookery courses), a stylish cozy lounge with leather sofas, armchairs and cafe tables, a tranquil library filled with books, a first-floor landing featuring a large antique desk and another lounge area on the top floor with cathedral ceiling and skylight. The rooms are the perfect place to rest and rejuvenate after a full and decadent day of cooking, eating and exploring. The well-appointed rooms all feature oversized double beds, a desk, wardrobe, en suite toilet and shower, complementary toiletries and slippers, guest robes for use during your stay, hairdryer, USB charging ports, towels and bed linens, a fan (if requested) and free WiFi.
Misse, FranceChinon, FranceSaumur, France
What Currency is being quoted?
The Currency Code is listed directly after the published amount. If it states USD, then the quoted price is in United States Dollars. If it states CAD, then the quoted price is in Canadian Dollars. If it states EUR, then the quoted price is in European Union Dollars…etc. However, please note that all charges are processed in USD, and Epitourean’s Merchant Bank automatically calculates the currency conversion on the day of the charge.
What does Double Occupancy mean?
Two persons traveling together, and staying in the same room. Tour prices are normally quoted as “per person, double occupancy” in case two people are traveling together and staying in the same room, but paying separately. The cost of the lodging is also shared by two people, thereby reducing costs. This could be a married couple, two friends or relatives.
What is a Single Supplement?
Whenever a person travels alone, the cost of their lodging cannot be shared by another person. When tour products are priced, they are normally stated as “per person, double occupancy.” Whenever a guest occupies a room as a solo, the whole cost of the lodging must be incurred by that one individual. Tour companies accommodate this by charging a Single Supplement. Epitourean does its best to keep the single supplement as low as possible, but it is a real cost that tour companies must absorb, and must pass along to the single traveler.
If I am a Solo Traveler, will I be paired with another person?
Epitourean never pairs a solo traveler with another person without a special request. If you book Single Occupancy, you will have a room entirely to yourself. However, should you wish to be paired with another solo traveler to save on the single supplement, you may make this request. We cannot guarantee that we can accommodate such requests, since it would take another solo traveling on the same tour for the same dates. But if requested, we will certainly try.
Are flights included in the tour price?
No. Flights are never included in the price of our land-only tours. Epitourean does not provide air, rail or sea travel, unless expressly noted in the itinerary.
May I give a culinary tour as a gift?
Yes. Epitourean has a special program designed specifically for this purpose. Our Gift Packages come with features such as special messages to the recipient, gift box option, gift link (without pricing), and floating dates (should you not know when the gift recipient wants to travel). Contact a Culinary Travel Specialist at 800-390-3292 or to receive additional information about this unique offering.
May we request separate beds if sharing a room?
Yes. In most cases, Epitourean can accommodate a request for two beds to be placed in one room. Just make sure to make this request in the comments section of the reservation process.
Does each guestroom have a private bathroom?
Yes. Epitourean partners with the best lodging options in each destination, and private (en suite) bathrooms are a requirement. However, you should inquire as to the configuration of bathrooms should you have a special need. For example, some tours include accommodations in medieval villages, where either a shower or bath(but maybe not both) are present.
Can your tours accommodate my dietary restrictions?
In almost all cases, Epitourean can accommodate dietary choices and restrictions. But we do request that you ask a Culinary Travel Specialist prior to making your reservation so that we can assess your individual situation.
If I am unable to use a portion of the tour, can I get a partial refund?
Unfortunately, due to vendor and supplier contracts, we are unable to provide partial refunds for unused portions of any tour or tour component.
Are Transfers included in the Itinerary?
Round-trip transfers from the airport or train station are normally included in our international tours. Transfers to the destination (for both international and domestic tours) are not included in the tour price. Please see the Sample Itinerary. If it mentions that transfers are included, then yes, transfers are included at no additional cost.
What meals and excursions are included in the tour?
The Sample Itinerary should be your reference. If the meal or excursion is described in the Sample Itinerary, then it is included at no additional charge. For those days where it expressly notes Free time, then any optional activities you elect to participate in might have an additional cost. In addition, if the itinerary states "evening on your own," it would imply that you have the opportunity to visit a restaurant of your own choosing, and at your own expense. If you have any question about inclusions, please submit an inquiry by clicking on the blue "Ask Us a Question" button under the price section.
Is it possible to book pre or post tours or stays through Edible Destinations?
Yes, we often do have optional 2 and 3 night excursions that are priced separately from the tour. We can also assist with pre and post night stays in a hotel if you choose to come in early before the tour starts, or stay on after a tour ends. The price of those hotel stays are not included in the price of the tour, but we would be happy to provide a quote. Simply ask your Culinary Travel Specialist, or submit an inquiry by clicking on the blue "Ask Us a Question" button.
Are Guide or Host Gratuities included in the price of the tour?
Since tipping guidelines and customs vary widely between countries, we do not include gratuities in the price of the tour. Your Culinary Travel Specialist can provide you with recommendations. But the general rule is to tip modestly when you are pleased with a guide’s services, either at the end of the tour, or at the conclusion of a specialty day excursion where you will only be with that guide (or chef) on that day.
Should we plan on any personal expenses during the tour?
All lodging, meals, transfers, classes and excursions mentioned in the Sample Itinerary and Vacation Highlights are included in the price of the tour. However, we highly recommend taking local currency for purchasing personal items, souvenirs, tipping, etc. You can either get the local currency at an airport exchange service, ATM or from your local bank prior to travel. However, you should note that many hosted destinations do not accept credit cards for personal purchases.
Do you recommend Travel Protection?
We recommend that you purchase a travel protection plan to help protect you and your travel investment against the unexpected. Travel protection plans can include coverage for Trip Cancellation, Trip Interruption, Emergency Medical and Emergency Evacuation/Repatriation, Trip Delay, Baggage Delay and more. For more information on the available plans or to enroll, click on the link below or contact Travelex Insurance Services at 800-228-9792 and reference location number 06-0248. The product descriptions provided here are only brief summaries and may be changed without notice. The full coverage terms and details, including limitations and exclusions, are contained in the insurance policy. Travelex CA Agency License #0D10209. All products listed are underwritten by, Berkshire Hathaway Specialty Insurance Company (formerly known as Stonewall Insurance Company), 1314 Douglas Street, Suite 1400, Omaha, NE 68102. 11.17 E7N
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