After gallivanting around the Tuesday village market at Vaison-la-Romaine until midday, we were famished. 


Our search for a perfect lunch ended at the nearby Beaumes-de-Venise. We hadn’t a clue about La Part des Anges. We just followed our instinct, as the other restaurant we wanted to lunch at, was full house, hence, we walked a bit up a hilly slope and found a somewhat quiet road with several old and vacant shoplots or terraced houses. We saw several tables on the terrace were taken except for one with four chairs! It was our first eat-out meal in France since we arrived 3 days earlier, hence, we had hit an instant jackpot!

As if that wasn’t enough, we were being served with a fantastic local wine as aperitif, Muscat de Beaumes-de-Venise from the local Domaine de Coyeux.

Remember Anton Ego from the Disney film, Ratatouille?  The Ratatouille he ate at Gusteau’s transported him back to his childhood?

Well, it was probably the same feeling my other half had when he had his first sip of the Muscat. It must have transported him back to a special occasion or reception he had attended once upon a time. 🙂

By the way, hubby is a small collector of wines. I won’t call him a connoisseur of wines, but he seems to know his wines quite well, while I seem to know my grudges and complaints of him stockpiling bottles and crates of wines in our small cellar. Lol!

But, honestly speaking, I liked the Muscat, too. It’s a natural sweet wine and refreshingly fruity, so no prizes for guessing what comes up next on our agenda!

We drove to Domaine de Coyeux where I experienced my first wine-tasting. We tried 3 different seemingly similar wines, but they tasted different. A Muscadine is less sweet than a Muscat, and a Muscat from different years tasted different, too. 

To me, the Muscat tasted like the Sarawak tuak. Ha ha ha …!  But a more refined, fruity and clear tuak, and less sweet and heavy. I’m glad I’m not a sommelier. I would be fired immediately. Lol!

Like all Belgians who travelled all the way to France in search for good wines, my hubby bought half a dozen of the Muscat de Beaumes-de-Venise from the grapes of Domaine de Coyeux, from the production year 2014.

By the way, Muscats cannot be kept too long. They last between 10 to 15 years, however, I don’t think the 6 bottles will age past the time stamp 🙂

With the superb weather and a fulfilling day, we were all very tired. Luckily I could catch a siesta in the car while hubby was driving. The 2 boys were also dozing at the backseat. 


To be honest, my real summer hols had not begun until I had submitted some reports from work. I knew I should not be working during my holidays, but it’s just me. I’d be freaking guilty if I had not distributed the forecast reports by timeline. 

I realised it was a real challenge for me to download all the reports. It took me ages because of the bad internet connection at our holiday home. The night before saw me hitting the sack at almost 2 am! I continued with my work the next day, thus, we had to re-shuffle our holiday itinerary. We all stayed home that  Wednesday. Ouch!

To make amends and peace with my ‘housemates’, I whipped up a tasty and rustic meal of spagbol, my version, plus mushroom soup.

While the guys were in the pool, I was juggling between working at my laptop and cooking the spagbol from scratch. Yup, multi-tasking is my middle name 😉. 

I knew there would be 3 very, very hungry tummies after the swim.  And I was right! So glad to see happy smileys on the guys’ faces gulping and downing the hefty spagbol 🙂

It was back to work for me after lunch until I finished the reports at 7pm!

Some colleagues even noticed I was online and thought I was back from my hols! Nope!

I felt a huge relief when I clicked “send”. My reports were finally distributed, and my real Summer hols had just begun. Yay!


Domaine de Coyeux is just one of the hundred thousands of vineyards in France. Our next stop was at Château La Nerthe at Châteauneuf-du-Pape, a region famous for its best wines. The journey of 24 km was strewn with vineyards with different types of grapes grown. I noticed the earth where the grape vines were grown was covered with small stones or pebbles and was rather dry. Perhaps that gave the best result to the wines, pressed from the best grapes of the region.

I was excited and was looking forward to another adventure of wine-tasting :D. We wine-tasted some of the red wines. I tasted only one type as I felt a bit tipsy from sipping the wine. 

By the way, the proper wine-tasting etiquette follows the following process: looking, swirling, smelling, tasting and savouring or the five “S” steps: see, swirl, sniff, sip, savour. 

I think I went straight to swallowing and had a big TKO instantly! *big grin*

One consolation though, it was nice and cool in the cellar of the wine-tasting area. When we walked out of the cellar door, we felt the gush of the August Summer heat. What a contrast!

Hubby bought half a dozen of the Château La Nerthe from the production year of 2013.

We left Château La Nerthe and drove to the centre of Châteauneuf-du-Pape in search for a decent meal.

After the successful lunch deal at Beaumes-de-Venise, we chose for the complete menu of  Eur 18 at Restaurant La Mule de Châteauneuf-du-Pape.

It was a good and simple lunch but in comparison, we still preferred the lunch deal at Beaumes-de-Venise for the same price tag.

Our day at Châteauneuf-du-Pape ended at Mason des Vins (House of wines) from 90 Domaines & Châteaux.

Did hubby buy any wines?  Erm… Let me guess… I think that was the silliest question. He bought 6 bottles of Moulin des Saints Rouge 

I felt tipsy just looking at the 4.5 kg extra weight (or 6 x 750 ml)!


After consuming a bit too much fermented grapes the past couple of hours, I slept like a baby, only to get up the following morn for another new adventure…

See ya!

Cheers from Sunny Provence!

  1. Nie2 says:

    Dora, I truly enjoyed reading your stories. You have the gift of writing. Thank you for sharing your adventures, beautiful pictures and of coz your cooking. I love it all. May God bless you and your family with good health, joy and happiness and love always.
    Cheers sister!!

  2. Nasifriet says:

    Thanks, sis 💖. I’m just a story-teller😍This is also one of my ways of documenting the many photos from our travels. I should have done that earlier, but anyway, better late than never. God bless you, too sis and take care. Enjoy the glorious moments with your gifted kids. Hugs xxx

  3. […] Back To Sunny Provence, South France: Beaumes-de-Venise and Châteauneuf-du-Pape (Part 3) […]

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