Local Specialities to Try in Provence: Part Two

The best way to travel is with all five senses. We often concentrate on what to visit with our eyes, but during your trip in Provence, it’s imperative to travel for taste as well. Lucky for you, the region of Provence is renowned for its local specialities and gastronomy. Our team will be happy to organize your trip in order for you to discover the rich cuisine this region has to offer. In our first article on local specialities to try in Provence, we detailed scrumptious finds, such as navettes and taureau. In the second part of this series, we’re continuing to share our favorite local specialities to try in Provence. Bon appétit !


France is known for its French fries, no doubt. You certainly can find fries on menus all over Provence, but when in the south, we recommend trying panisses, the region’s take on this classic. Made from a base of chickpea flour, these fried snacks are best when accompanied with an aioli sauce. These French-fry like snacks originate from the Estaque neighborhood on the outskirts of Marseille.

Credit: Round Trip Travel

Where to enjoy your panisses in Provence

You can find panisses on menus across Provence, but one of our favorite places to enjoy panisses is at Viaghji di Fonfon, a local tapas restaurant. This spot is located right along the port of Vallon des Auffes. This nook of Marseille feels like a world apart; it feels as if you’re in a small fishing village and not in a bustling metropolis. You can snack on a plate of panisses as you sip on a Lillet Spritz and watch the sunset over the port. 


Fish soup? Okay, hear us out: bouillabaisse is a fish soup with rich heritage and history. Historically, Marseille is a port city with ample maritime traffic. And cuisine is a reflection of its people and terrain. Located on the Mediterranean sea, Marseille has an abundance of fish recipes, with bouillabaisse being the city’s icon. 

Centuries ago, fishermen took the bony rockfish that they didn’t sell in and made a meal out of it, according to Research. Today, you can find bouillabaisse at restaurants throughout Marseille, but it can’t be just any hodgepodge of fish. This recipe must include four of the following types of fish:  scorpion fish, monkfish, white scorpion fish, conger eel, spider crab, red scorpion fish, St. Pierre, and lobster, according to Marseille’s tourism site. The recipe also calls for various spices, such as saffron, garlic and parsley.

Where to enjoy your bouillabaisse in Provence

With three Michelin stars and stunning sea views, Le Petit Nice Passedat is the perfect place to enjoy an authentic bowl of bouillabaisse. Finish your meal with some nougat and, like a true French person, assorted cheeses for dessert. Under the mastery of Chef Gérald Passédat, you’re sure to be licking up every last crumb.


For those with a sweet tooth, listen up. Because when in Provence, you’ll want to be sure to taste the region’s famed calissons. Dating back to the 1400s, this local treat is said to have been created for the King of Provence’s marriage to Jeanne of Laval, according to The Connexion. Legend has it that his bride didn’t smile until tasting these gourmandises at her wedding. We can’t blame her! The oval-shaped bites have an almond-flour base with flavors of melon and orange peel. 

Credit: Round Trip Travel

Where to enjoy your calissons in Provence

When exploring the charming town of Aix-en-Provence, tasting its famed calissons is a must. As you stroll the Cours Mirabeau, or its main street of shops and restaurants, be sure to stop by Maison Béchard. The aroma of this bakery and pastry shop will meet you even before you step foot inside. Here you can delight in some calissons, and we won’t judge you if you indulge in some of this shop’s other sweet treats.

Olive oil 

Although not a dish of its own, olive oil plays an important role in southern France’s cuisine. Thousands of years ago, the Phocaeans brought the olive tree to Marseille, per Provence Web. Around 90% of the world’s olive trees are located around the Mediterranean, according to Provence Web. And throughout this region, you’ll have plenty of opportunities to feast on the quality olive oil produced locally.

Credit: Unsplash

Where to enjoy your olive oil in Provence

We invite you to indulge in some locally produced olive oil at the Moulin du Clos des Jeannons. This family-run olive oil mill is located outside the darling village of Gordes. Here you can have a private tasting of its different olive oils and connect with the Provençal countryside.

If you’re interested in not only tasting all of the local specialities in Provence but also learning about them in depth, Provence Tour can set up a cooking class for you. Whether you prefer sweet or savory, southern France is sure to tempt you with its exquisite gastronomy.

Provence Tour offers unique and glamorous experiences as we showcase magnificent and rare highlights of the charming region of Provence.

Our private drivers have expert knowledge of the region and will happily guide you and answer any questions you may have about the area. Indulge in an authentic and customized guided day tour with an opportunity to see Provence’s hidden treasures, such as the lavish lavender fields, various picturesque villages, and significant historical sites.

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