Exclusive for Mail on Sunday readers: Discover the tastes of the Rhone with Raymond Blanc
For food and wine-lovers, the Rhone region is one of Europe’s ultimate destinations, with its rich burgundies, zesty Provence rosés and fine cheeses. And on this all-inclusive five-star river cruise along the Rhone, you’ll be joined by Frenchman Raymond Blanc, one of the fathers of modern British cuisine. His Le Manoir aux Quat’Saisons restaurant has spawned some of the country’s most talented chefs, including Marco Pierre White, Sat Bains, Heston Blumenthal and Michael Caines, but his passion for food has its roots in France.
‘Most French life revolves around mealtimes and my family was no exception,’ says Raymond. ‘For my mother, cooking was an act of love. At an early age, I was taught to love and respect food, for its beauty, its freshness and also its price. This simple philosophy has been a strong influence on my career as a chef.’
You’ll see that passion on display as you take part in an interactive cookery demonstration with Raymond. You will have the opportunity to taste his creations, enjoy a dinner of local delicacies from a menu that he will choose, and ask him your cookery questions during a question-and-answer session and book signing, where you’ll also get a free copy of his latest cookbook (one per booking).
Time span: The famous ancient bridge over the Rhone at Avignon
OUR SPECIAL GUEST
You will be joined by Raymond Blanc
Chef Patron of the two-Michelin-starred Le Manoir aux Quat’Saisons restaurant in Oxfordshire, Raymond Blanc worked his way up from a cleaner in France to become one of the best-known chefs in the world. From a young age, he helped his father grow vegetables, and Raymond fell in love with food standing at the frying pan with Maman Blanc. He opened his first restaurant in Oxford in 1977 before buying Le Manoir in 1983. A regular guest on TV favourite Saturday Kitchen, Raymond has presented numerous series including his recent ITV show Simply Raymond.
Your sailing begins in Lyons and you will travel along the Rhone river, stopping at Macon, Vienne, Viviers, Avignon and Tarascon to explore these charming destinations and feast on the region’s best bites.
You’ll tour Roman monuments, visit vineyards, and enjoy all-inclusive food and wine in the ship’s fantastic restaurants.
REASONS TO BOOK
MEET RAYMOND BLANC
You will meet the much-loved chef and take part in a series of exclusive events with him. Join Raymond for a book signing and Q&A session while you enjoy a cocktail before seeing him in action on board the following day during an interactive cooking demonstration. That evening, you’ll feast on a special regional menu chosen by Raymond.
ULTIMATE FOODIE ADVENTURE
The Rhone Valley is the jewel in France’s culinary crown, and you’ll have plenty of chances to sample its produce. A highlight is sure to be a meeting with a local farmer who has a specially trained truffle-snuffling dog, and tasting what it finds – exclusively for this itinerary.
CRUISE IN STYLE
Scenic Sapphire is an all-suite Space-Ship, with food and drink included in the price you pay. Your award-winning ship boasts a fine restaurant, elegant bar, salt therapy lounge and fitness facilities, and a sundeck with pool. You’ll can also learn delicious local recipes from our expert chefs, at the on-board cooking school, Scenic Culinaire.
Choose from a huge range of trips on your eight-day itinerary, from shopping with a chef and cooking your purchases, to visiting vineyards and an olive farm and exploring the architectural wonders of Arles and Avignon.
In addition, after the doors close to the public at Avignon’s prestigious Palais des Papes, you’ll be invited for an exclusive Scenic Enrich concert inside this elegant 14th Century palace.
- Return flights from up to 16 UK airports.
- Seven nights in a luxury Scenic Sapphire suite.
- Exclusive cooking demo with tasters from Raymond Blanc.
- Free copy of Raymond’s latest cookbook.
- All-inclusive food and premium beverages.
- Menu chosen by Raymond Blanc for a special on-board dinner.
- Choose from 16 Scenic Freechoice excursions and one exclusive Scenic Enrich event, including a classical concert and beaujolais wine tasting.
- Limited-time offer of £700 per person discount.
YOUR ITINERARY: Day 1 Fly to Lyons DAY 2 Lyons, Raymond Blanc talk and Q&A DAY 3 Macon, truffle farming, Raymond cookery demo and dinner DAY 4 Vienne DAY 5 Viviers DAY 6 Avignon DAY 7 Avignon to Tarascon DAY 8 Tarascon, return to UK
HOW TO BOOK
The price: From £2,795pp*. The dates: July 14 to 21, 2022.
Call 0161 516 5479, quoting MOS RAYMOND BLANC. To find out more, visit mailtravel.co.uk/raymondblanc.
Terms and conditions: * Price shown includes relevant discounts and is based on two people sharing an entry-level suite. Single supplement applies. Subject to availability. Timings of Raymond’s events are subject to change and there may be slight alterations to the itinerary due to operational restrictions. Drinks included except fine or rare wine and champagne. Offer of £700pp is for new bookings made before September 30, 2021. This trip is ATOL-protected and our travel partner Scenic is ABTA-bonded.