One significant advantage in being a Carpe Vino Wine Club member is advance notice of all special events, including our next wine tour to Provence, France, set for October. This small group adventure is limited to 26 people, and after are initial offering to the Wine Club, just eight seats remain. So, if you’d like to join us on this very special journey, please respond without delay. This email is going to 5,200 wine geeks, and we expect to sell out quickly. –gary
We’re putting the band back together for an expedition to one of the world’s most revered regions of epicurean delights with a trip called, “Pilgrimage to Provence, the Wine, Food, Art & Soul of the South of France.” This 10-day journey begins in Nice, France on October 3, 2015, and finishes in Avignon on October 12.
This will be the second tour I have organized in cooperation with Matthew Brumley and his “small group adventure” tour company, Earthbound Expeditions, based in Bainbridge Island, WA. Matthew is one of the most experienced and knowledgeable world travelers we have ever encountered, and this was demonstrated clearly in the tour of Spain’s wine country he designed for us in October 2013.
That was, as it turned out, a magical adventure for the 20 mostly Carpe Vino Wine Club members who joined us in Madrid for a tour of Spain’s wine country and an introduction to its eclectic heritage. The trip concluded in Barcelona, and by the time we reached this world-class city, our group was totally bonded after eating and drinking our way across the cultural mecca that is Spain.
We’re reprising the style of the trip—a wine centric program paired with great restaurants and a satisfying dose of compelling side trips to some of the most alluring towns in this most rarified of destinations. We’ll go to Monte Carlo, Nice, Avignon and a host of villages along the way.
Click here to see the full, nine-night, 10-day itinerary, including details about places we will be visiting. Per-person cost for the ground portion of the trip is about $4,000 per person (depending on discounts and number of travelers; airfare is not included).
For art lovers among you, we’ll be touring museums with important collections of work produced by Pablo Picasso, Henri Matisse and Vincent Van Gogh. Plus we’ll have plenty of time for what Matthew calls “personal discovery”.
Perhaps one of the most compelling features of this expedition is the fact that joining us as our guide is Cesar Esquin, the very talented and personable host who lead us across the vineyards of Rioja, Navarra, Ribera del Duero and Priorat. Cesar is a linguist and speaks fluent French, but his engaging personality shines through in any language. . .including lilting English. We’re fortunate and delighted that he’s at the microphone again; his presence elevated the experience for everyone.
If you’re the type of traveler who would rather go it alone rather than join a group, we’ll convert you on the first day when you join us in Provence. The beauty is almost everything is greased and paid for in advance. . .hotels, museum entrances and breakfast every day. Four lunches and three dinners are also included, which is perfect for those who love spending time with the group, but also relish the opportunity for exploring restaurants independently on a more intimate basis.
Traveling in a group eliminates 95% of the stress of travel. You simply get on the bus and relax. No worries about directions or parking. You get off the bus at the venue and walk right in. What queues? Cesar handles everything expertly.
As a preview, sometime in spring we’ll be hosting a tasting of French wines in the Wine Mine for everyone who commits to the tour. So you can make reservations now, or stay tuned for more information. It your roll of the dice!
Our tour of Provence promises to be a trip to remember, celebrated with folks who are sure to become great friends. I’d love to have you join Ellen and me on this very special pilgrimage.