Arles market, held every Saturday morning on Boulevards des Lices and Boulevard Georges Clemenceau, specializes in regional produce.
Provence – Been There

Say Cheese, please

Photo by Jurjen Drenth

Provence – Been There Say Cheese, please

The balmy Mediterranean climate of Provence makes it one of France’s best culinary regions. And its cheeses are no exception.

Tara Isabella Burton
Tara Isabella Burton Travel Writer

While Provence is justly celebrated for its seafood, its tomatoes, and its richly verdant produce (not to mention its tart-sweet summer rosé!), fewer people know that it’s equally a powerhouse when it comes to cheese production.

Elsewhere in France, cheeses are traditional made with cow’s milk, but the best Provençal cheeses are chèvre: goat cheese. Runny and milky or sweet and creamy, Provençal chèvre is accessible to cheese novice and fromage connoisseur alike.

Try the Banon – a preserved goat cheese pickled by being wrapped in chestnut leaves, dried, and soaked and heated in local alcohol – or head to the grittily bustling port of Marseilles to try the Brousse du Rove – believed to date back to an ancient Greek shipwreck, which brought Greek goats to mate with Gallic ones to produce the perfect cheese-producing animal.

Paired with fresh Provençal fruit – juicy peaches, sensual figs – it’s the perfect dessert. Or even – if you’re feeling decadent – an entire meal.

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Provence grows more than half of France's fruit and vegetables and is also the oldest wine producing region of the country, with a history going back some 2,500 years. Pastis is another local favorite, the drink being first commercialized by Paul Ricard in Marseille. Photo by John Burke / Getty Images

John Burke

John Burke

Agency
Getty Images

Provence grows more than half of France's fruit and vegetables and is also the oldest wine producing region of the country, with a history going back some 2,500 years. Pastis is another local favorite, the drink being first commercialized by Paul Ricard in Marseille.

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