Monday, November 1, 2010

A vist to the bread museum (okay, so I'm a dweeb)

On a recent trip to Provence, I found myself staying in Bonnieux, where I'd read in a guideboook there was a certain museum of interest. I asked our innkeeper where it was, and he had to consult a map. "You're the first one to ever ask," he said.

Figures. The museum in question was the Bread Museum, or more properly, the Bakery Museum, La Musée de la Boulangerie, and I wasn't leaving town without seeing it. Fortunately, by the time we'd arrived on this rainy Sunday afternoon, the crowds had dispersed, and we had the place almost to ourselves. Other than the plaster figure loading the (authentic) oven  (the museum was formerly a bakery) and some ancient reapers,
much of the museum is devoted to documentation regulating the price of bread and flour -- not the most thrilling collection, but real important if you happened to be living in France a century or two ago. Still, there were some great vintage posters, some neat antique baking instruments, and we had a grand time. So should you ever find yourselves  in Provence on a rainy day, I highly recommend it. If you find it.


  1. If you plan carefully, start early enough in the day, and don’t dally you can combine a visit to the bakery museum in Bonnieux
    with one to the basketry museum in Cadenet
    and the corkscrew museum near Ménerbes,
    but the basketry museum is closed Sunday and Wednesday mornings and all day Tuesday, and the corkscrew museum is closed all day Sunday, so you’ll have to choose another day.
    Start at Cadenet for the 10-12 open time. Then drive north through Loumarin to Bonnieux, where you can eat lunch before the bakery museum opens at 14h30 (14h in Jul-Aug). Leave in time to visit the corkscrew museum near Ménerbes, which is open until 19h (17h Nov-Mar). Check the web sites for current hours before going!
    Of course, there are many possibilities in the area, e.g., Cadenet is very near l’Abbaye de Silvacane; Lourmarin is a lovely village with art galleries and a château. One could easily spend a month in the oval encompassing Avignon, Carpentras, Apt, Pertuis, Aix-en-Provence, and St-Rémy-de-Provence and still miss many opportunities, natural, cultural, and edible.

    1. Sounds like the perfect day me - you're making me want to go back! Thanks for the post. And I'll be writing about our bicycle trip through several of the towns you mention in Flirting with French (coming out in Sept 2014).



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