Liz LordRestaurant RecommendationsTaste

Lunch and Tempting Reasons to Visit Banon

Liz Lord and her husband Mel run an annual tour called Hidden Provence, based out of a private home near Forcalquier guests spend 8 nights (7 days) together exploring an “unspoilt area of Provence.” Liz wrote the following post after they finished the guided trip, but before the memories of Banon faded.

“On the slate please!”

It would be excellent to live around Banon, and have the opportunity to even have the chance to ask for a “slate.” See the definition here.

Most, mere mortals, who can only enjoy the pleasures of getting to Provence proper a couple of times a year, have to suffer instead, the occasional feast for the palate and eye, that the region offers.

Straying away from the “cut and thrust” of popular Provence, into – just – I believe – Department 04, the village of Banon (about 15 kilometres North of Forcalquier) has all a footsore – “how many more churches” tourist could wish for.

charcuterie #Banon @Spacebetweenfr

Drive into the village for about 11 if you can, and allow yourself plenty of time to ogle both the charcuterie at the Brindille Melchio, the tomes at the wonderful Bleuet bookshop (allegedly the largest in France), or buy some provisions for later from the variety of quaint grocers, including the stunning AOC Banon cheese speciality – well Banon – of course!

With tummies starting to rumble, and arms lengthening under the weight of all this fine produce, have a seat in the sun and a Pastis before lunch.

Vins au Vert #Banon @Spacebetweenfr

Your lunch does await, with a slate!

If a simple execution of small tasters of freshly made produce on an ardoise, washed down with wine by the glass appeals, you will be in heaven in the Les Vins au Vert.

The restaurant was taken over in 2015 by François (same interested/laid back charm in service, plus the chef’ who has been at the restaurant for a long time)  –  lunch will not disappoint. François also seems to be turning his talents to weekly homely food specials, as well as treating the eye with occasional art exhibitions.

Before you leave, have a browse at the “bookcases” of wine around you – at reasonable prices – plus more “third world” wines that you see available in most vintners in France – and stock up for your dinner!

More details

Le Resto: Les Vins au Vert
Rue Pasteur, Banon
Telephone: +33 (0)4 92 75 23 84

More info on the village.    

Another restaurant idea in Banon – La Table de la Panturle – just next door – interesting menu run by a Dutch/French team.

Holidays in this area? Try spacebetween for a great week of walking and dining!

Images – spacebetween – together – with very content American and Australian guests during Provence holiday week.

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Liz Lord

Liz Lord

Liz Lord and her husband Mel Jones have been living in the Mercantour National Park for the past 15 years.

Most people would already be saying “where?”, but in fact the Mercantour remains a delightfully unknown area straddling the Franco-Italian border, in the Alpes-Maritimes. Liz and Mel live just an hour North of Nice – so can enjoy the best of best worlds, their life concentrated in their home in Berthemont les Bains, yet being able to enjoy the hubbub on the coast when the need for culture arises.

Choosing to decamp from the UK (and their “normal” corporate lives!) after a chance encounter with their current home in 2001, they now earn their living by renting out their two gites and offering walking and adventure holidays at Space Between.

With the experience of ex-pat life, setting up a small business in France, house renovation, and land and horse management!, with a keen interest in food and wine and travel, Liz has much to contribute for those interested in a new life in France or with a zest to dip their toe in the water on holiday.


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    Lisa mebs
    July 13, 2017 at 11:36 pm — Reply

    Do you know of anyone near forcalquier that offers French cooking classes and which would accept children’s (ages 10 and 12)?


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