The exceptional beauty, world-famous food and wine of Burgundy in central Eastern France is an easy hour and 15 minutes by train from Paris. It makes sense to stay awhile.
With world-famous food and wine (think pinot noirs, Chardonnay, proximity to Chablis (the golden gate of Burgundy and 45-minutes from Beaujolais), captivating countryside, aweinspiring architecture and heritage spanning the Renaissance, Middle Ages and Prehistoric Period, it’s easy to spend several days soaking in this central eastern part of France.
A Jaunt in Joigny, art, history and half-timbered houses
A must-visit on the banks of the Yonne river, Joigny is a town oozing with art, history, and half-timbered houses. Food lovers will find the Michelin starred La Côte Saint Jacques restaurant & spa exceptional. Part of the Relais & Châteaux collection of gourmet restaurants and boutique hotels, this building majestically reflects in the Yonne river’s peaceful waters.
An exclusive itinary in the Chablis vineyard
Not far from the Côte Saint Jacques, travellers can peer behind the doors of the famous Château de Béru and its Chablis vineyard. There, they can meet Athénaïs de Béru, a woman whose passion for wine and commitment to her craft is palpable. Athénaïs spent her childhood in the Chablis region at the Château, a family property dating back over 400 years. She is generous with anecdotes that stimulate the senses: the smells of fermentation, the flavours of harvest meals, the candles to light at night in the vines to fight against frost. “And then I remember how, having installed myself in a small garden hut, I had opened a ‘restaurant’ with a fabulous wine list,very famous appellations which all had the distinction of being sold at 5 francs!” Each year the 15 hectares of vines are cultivated organically and biodynamically.
Le Chateau de Beru - LCBD Le Chateau de Beru
Fabulous Flavigny, the medieval city
Flavigny sur Ozerain,one of the most beautiful village in France H Copyright Marc Troubat
South of Chablis in the heart of Auxois’ gentle landscape is Flavigny-sur-Ozerain, where travellers can be charmed by the fortified doors of medieval architecture, narrow streets, craft houses and bourgeois residences. There is no medieval city more fragrant than Flavigny. The scent permeating its alleys will guide you to the heart of the old Benedictine abbey: the one place where Anises are made. Since 1999, Catherine, who succeeded her grandfather and her father Nicolas Troubat, continues the tradition of the Anis de Flavigny. No trip to Flavigny is complete without visiting the Anise Factory, the Anise Crypt, the Anise Museum, the Anise Café and the Anise Boutique.
Boite Anis de Flavigny, the speciality of Flavigny Copyright Anis de Flavigny
Delightful Dijon the capital of the greater Burgundy – Franche-Comte region
A cultural destination par excellence, Dijon is the capital of the greater Burgundy – Franche-Comté region, dubbed The City of Art and History with a vast, protected area of 97 hectares. The latter is listed as a UNESCO World Heritage Site. Dijon’s city centre is exclusively reserved for pedestrians.
In the capital of the Dukes of Burgundy, a tiny owl guides visitors through Dijon’s historic architectural heart, ensuring no detail of Dijon’s architectural heritage is missed. From Place Darcy, the owl takes visitors to the original owl perched on a Notre-Dame church buttress. According to legend, those who caress her with their left hand will have their wishes granted!
Dijon Copyright Alain DOIRE Bourgogne-Franche-Comte Tourisme
A few words from double-starred chef Jean-Michel Lorain
“My grandmother, Marie Lorain, created La Côte Saint-Jacques after the war. But it was my parents, Michel and Jacqueline, who, from 1958, transformed the guest house into a luxury hotel.” Almost 30 years before cooking workshops went mainstream, Jean-Michel shared his culinary prowess with wives of the hotel’s loyal customers. Today, many courses and local market tours tempt guests.
Double-starred chef Jean-Michel Lorain from La Côte Saint-Jacques Copyright Cote Saint-Jacques