Perhaps nothing reveals the nature and soul of a place quite like food does. So when you pair the tanalising culinary delights with the stunning scenery of France, you have one heavenly getaway on your hands. Whether you love to indulge in delectable pastries or enjoy fine wine, one of the best ways to savour the smorgasbord of flavours of authentic French Cuisine is by attending a local food festival.
To celebrate Bastille Day and our love of French gourmet delights, here are three renowned French Food and Wine Festivals you simply must experience on your next holiday in France.
Fête de la Gastronomie
A relatively new festival, France's Fête de la Gastronomie was established in 2011 and is now one of the country's preeminent foodie events.
This year, it's taking place on September 26-28 with events happening around the country.
This year's event signals a time to celebrate traditional French foods, France's heritage and the major influence food has on the country as a whole.
From chocolate-making workshops at the Thibaut Chocolaterie in Pierry through to touring the vineyards of the birthplace of the beverage Champagne itself, there's a never-ending list of foodie delights to indulge in.
Cooking demonstrations, special breakfasts, tastings, talks and mouthwatering specials of all kinds can be found all over the country during this time.
Salon Du Chocolat
Chocolate lovers from around the globe cannot miss the Salon Du Chocolat festival in France. This year, it's set to be an even more special occasion, celebrating its 20th anniversary from October 29 to November 2. Salon du Chocolat events take place all over the globe, but there's nothing like experiencing it in France, where chocolate is a veritable art form.
This year, Paris will host a 20,000 sqm exhibition space full of all things chocolate and cocoa, with new products, live demonstrations, workshops and even a delectable Chocolate Fashion Show.
Highlights include the Chocolate Bookshop, which is home to books solely about the craft of chocolate and pastry. Then there's the Chocosphere, home to conferences and tastings that delve into the nuances of chocolate and its different forms.
The Chocoland exhibition area hosts workshops for kids who get the chance to engage in some hands-on chocolate making.
Remember, Salon du Chocolat takes place in more locations than just Paris. Because France is such a chocolate-loving nation, towns and cities all across the map get involved. It's likely a destination you want to travel to in France will be celebrating Salon du Chocolat during this time, such as Lyon, Marseilles, Cannes and Bordeaux.
Menton Lemon Festival
If you love all things citrus, you should make your way to Menton in the Alpes-Maritimes region. Menton is fondly nicknamed 'The City of Lemons' and comes alive for the Lemon Festival, or Fete du Citron, each year.
Menton is a lemon-growing city, explaining the festival's origins. These days, when the festival is taking place, giant designs made from citrus fruits adorn the streets with orange and lemon floats. Now, thousands of revellers flock to Menton to witness the citrus-themed artwork and sculptures. With twinkling lights, towering structures and a huge number of crafts, you'll be in awe that everything is made from humble citrus fruits.
Of course, there are ample opportunities to taste tangy delights such as cakes, jams and jellies. In addition to this, there will also be a variety of fresh oranges and lemons for sale, particularly towards the end of the festival when the great works of edible art are dismantled and the best fruits are kept for consumption.
The Menton Lemon Festival is a winter celebration that usually takes place in January and February.
Whether you are seeking a luxurious winery escape or Let the experienced consultants at Travel Associates help plan your next gourmet food experience.