Monday, July 28, 2008

We went to the mountains

Mt Gerbier de Jonc

Yesterday, we headed to the mountains. X's parents took The Girl & I out for lunch. In the summer, the folks here head to the mountains to cool off (at one point, we had to pull out our sweaters so always go prepared). It's beautiful out there & in the summer, everything is green. You just drive past farms with cows, horses, sheeps grazing in the open & the fields all scattered with neat bundles of hay. I realised that this is a part of Ardeche that I don't go to very often. Perhaps this summer, The Girl & I would make some trips here.

Mt Gerbier de Jonc (altitude 1551m) is located in the National Park of Cevennes with the source of the Loire river nearby. If you look really closely at the first photo, you'll see hikers climbing up to the the summit and why wasn't I there, well I wasn't wearing the right shoes.

We still had a little time before our reservation so we stopped at the local market just at the foot of the mountain. Like all markets in France, it's filled with fresh local produce & I was intrigued by what this area has to offer. Let's see what we have

Honey flavored with blue berries, lavander, chestnut etc.

Mini Tarts of Wild Blueberries.
Blueberries is a specialty of the area.
You'll see more of them later.

Lots & lots of country style bread.
Great to pick some up for a picnic.

Air dried sausages which I'd talked about before.

For keeping cheese in the cellar

Looking at all that food has made us hungry & we didn't want to spoil our appetite by sampling everything at the market. So we headed to our restaurant which is in the village of Le Beage. The chef is the son of a family friend so we were keen to try this out. The restaurant serves what is typical of the food you would get around here - good hearty traditional fare. Nothing fancy but good fresh farm produce.

I forgot to take a picture of our main dish but the highlight of the meal has got to be desserts & the home made blue berry jam that they served with frommage blanc.

Assortment of the local charcuterie
- saucisson, cured ham, pate

I, who normally don't eat frommage blanc had 2 helpings.
Creamy cheese with blueberry jam - divine !!

For dessert, all 3 of us wanted more of those delicious blue berries.

We will be back.

In fact I was researching on the internet that there will be a festival of blueberries first week of August in another village in the mountains. I've already noted it down to make a trip there again.


SL said...


I discovered your blog several months back and really enjoyed reading about life in the French countryside.

I'm originally from Singapore too but now live in the UK. I have to say that living in a village-y location did take some getting used to!


petite fleur said...


Thank you for leaving me a note. I'm always happy to hear from my readers.

So where in the UK are you ? I know what you mean. I love it here but every now & then, I miss the city life.....

bunny said...

I love your pictures of the country side and the desserts look wonderful!

hot garlic said...

I found your blog from the FFF. It's great! I'm really hungry now, that was a great post.

I am an ex-pat too, we live in Sydney. It's great, I think I'd love to do France next!

SL said...


I live on the Hertfordshire and Buckinghamshire border. It is about 40-45mins by express train into Central London.

I used to live in Japan (30mins from Nagoya) where there were loads more to do in the night time. Loads of 24 hour restaurants, izakayas, manga cafes, late shopping.....

I miss the compactness of Singapore where everywhere was withing easy reach by cheap taxis!

Here, the only place that is open after 6 is the off-licence and the local pubs!

petite fleur said...

Bunny & Hot Garlic

Glad you found your way here. Stop by again soon.


I know what you mean. In the winter, after 7, it's a ghost town here. In the summer, we get a lot of tourists so there's always a flurry of activity.

I just told someone that my way of "getting away from it" is to head to the cities - just the opposite of people who live in the cities.

So how long have you been living there & what led you there ?

Tsu Lin + + said...

I always loved reading and looking at your French countryside photographs, it makes me want to go visit France, NOW.

It is so nice to have lunch at such a scenic place - lucky lucky!

We Are Never Full said...

reading/look at this post and reading the comments made me realize how true that old saying, "You always want what you don't have" is. I'm in the city and there are many moments I yearn to live in a small French village.

All I know is, that dried sausage caught my eye. Gimme, gimme!

SL said...

Hi again,

I've been in the UK for close to 5 years. I moved here to take on a job.

How long have you been in Ardeche? Do you go back home often? The last time I was home I did feel rather disoriented -- everything's changed so much!


PS. Is there anyway I can leave an email address privately? I'd love to chat more about French/ UK life, travel, home etc. if you're up for it too!

petite fleur said...

Tsu Lin

So when are you coming to visit ?

We are never full

So true so true.

And I'm sure they sell saucissons in NY too but I won't be able to tell you where cos I don't remember seeing them when I was living there. But you can find anything in NY, right ?


Write to me at
love to hear from you

sl said...

Hi petite fleur,

Thanks for your email address - I've since emailed you there. 'Speak' soon!