3 Aug 2009

Le Jardin Du Quai


I think the Sunday lunch is the best lunch of the week.

The weekend is well underway, the sleep-ins have helped, relaxation is foremost on the mind and the day is still well ahead of you.

I have a favourite place to lunch in L’Isle-sur-la-Sorgue, the antiquing town about 30 minutes away from Saint Remy de Provence.

This town, set on the Sorgue River, specialises in antiques and collectibles and on Sundays holds a flea market.

In summer the tables and chairs are arranged in the garden courtyard – it is so pretty and very shady – and such an oasis of comfort after the crowded market place.

The best thing is the set menu – no decision making – which I love; I am always happy to eat  the chef’s choice and what I don’t have to think about.

Yesterday we were treated to a starter of pan fried girolles (a fine variety of French mushroom) followed by skewers of barbecued lamb and a salad of tabouli.

The desert was divine. It was delicious, creamy and citrusy.

The most interesting thing about this little taste of heaven was the fresh tarragon that was sprinkled on top.

This aromatic herb that hails from the daisy family, with an aniseed taste when uncooked, is quite fabulous when combined with something sweet.

After lunch more antiquing – this time in the warehouse style galleries nearby the restaurant.

A great combination…  A flea market, a good lunch and more shopping, xv.

Le Jardin du Quai

91, Avenue Julian Guigue
8400 L’Isle-sur-la-Sorgue

+33 4 90 20 14 98

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This sounds like the perfect Sunday to me. Lunch sounds wonderful- and I hope you found some treasures. The setting is dreamy for a long, lingering lunch.

Josephine Tale Peddler

That sounds a perfect way to spend a Sunday! A lot nicer than my Sundays I have to admit! Sunday is never a restful day for me as it's my one day of work in the 'real world' xx

My Carolina Kitchen

We love the Sunday antique market in L'Isle-sur-la-Sorgue and have been there a couple of times. You have to arrive early to find a good spot to park.

Lamb for Sunday – so typical Provence. Would love to be there right now. Le Jardin du Quai looks like a charming restaurant, not touristy which we try to avoid. I'm making a note of it along with address so if we ever get back to St. Remy (we were going this year but put it off because of the economy and the dollar) we'll know the perfect restaurant to try in L'Isle-sur-la-Sorgue.

A Gift Wrapped Life

Sounds like the perfect day! Any restaurant that welcomes you with a gorgeous aray of flowers has the right attitude I think. What a beautiful setting for a leisurely lunch. Xo


Sounds like a perfect day – again ! Can you believe it is August ? I remember your post about preparing for this time …..it's here. enjoy

Callie Grayson

Oh, what a fabulous Sunday!!!
I love tarragon, I use it in my shortbread sometimes. I agree, it has that perfect taste with the sweetest.
Did you buy anything???
would love to see if you did.


this sounds like heaven.
and you are so right about
leisurely sunday lunches..

i love your special restuarant!


Ohh – I couldn't agree more – Sunday Lunch is a very special time. Growing up it was at my mother's house, and you didn't miss it!!

This place is absolutely beautiful and everything sounds delicious !! Hope it was a wonderful day for you.


mimi charmante

I shall be saving this post in my "places to go" file for my france trip. A Sunday shall be spent at the flea market in what sounds like a wonderful little village~


Mmm…I totally agree. Nothing beats a wonderful lunch at a great restaurant. A good meal, a glass of wine, great friends, on a lazy sunny day off.

Di Overton

I still have everything I bought from the L'Isle-sur-la-Sorgue antiques market years ago. I want to be right there right now.

sherry ♥ lee

I would never think of tarragon with a sweet but it sounds like it works magnificently!

What a beautiful spot — it looks like a little oasis and having a fixed menu? Ideal..really surprising and delightful for the taste buds!


Bonjour! Vicki Archer,
Your description is very "vivid"…because I can picture in my "minds-eye" every detail that you have described in your post.
I can even smell the "fresh" garden air!
Merci, for sharing!
DeeDee ;-D


Now that sounds like a little piece of heaven!
mmmmm…tarragon with sweetness, is something to try.
What a wonderful Sunday…

Lylah Ledner

Oh, such sweet days of lingering – it's one thing I think Americans would do well to take a lesson from the French….appreciating the art of being OK to linger and rest and enjoy.

Yesterday, I went to Petite Provence (here in Portland) and ate croissant with my 8 yr old granddaughter (of course I had my coffee) and while there 4 lovely French women sat and chatted and lingered as if there were no other place more important to be.

I basked in that ability to do that…and took a few lessons for my own heart…being OK with the art of lingering over friendships and coffee and French pastries.

xoxo Lylah
La Maison et le Jardin

PS received my copy of you book…LOVE it! Thanks for pouring your heart into something that other women can so enjoy.

Diane Dorrans Saeks

Hello, Vicki-

You are right–trooping thought flea markets works up an appetite. No need for an apero to bring forth the desire for lunch.

Tarragon: so pleased you like it. It seems to have gone out of fashion totally in California. I never see it on any menus! It used to be considered so chic and the most sophisticated fresh herb. Now it is nowhere to be seen on any dishes in restaurants here. I must find out why. Mysterious. We used to enjoy tarragon in salads, or tarragon on delicate fish dishes. Cheers, http://www.thestylesaloniste.com


Antiquing and lunch in this lovely setting? Sigh. Heaven.

Thanks for your thoughful comment at WM. I totally agree. The more, the merrier. :^)


Vicki, yet another magic place to have literally right on your doorstep!

The skewered barbecued lamb sounds divine.

I'll just dream on…

Olga Granda-Scott

I LOVE le Jardin and recognized it instantly from the first photo. I always eat there when we shop in Isle. Have you ever gotten to eat in the little gazebo…very romantic!
I have some photos there I keep forgetting to post, I'll let you know when I get around to it!

A Thousand Clapping Hands

This sounds delightful. Hope you found some wonderful old treasures.
I'm so glad French Essence arrives in my mailbox. It's always a thrill. Hope you got my e-mail. I sent it in a different way then usual and can't be sure that it arrived. Anyhow – it's good to be back.


The perfact day, and thanks to your pictures and words, I can almost think myself there, would prefer to be there , but not possible at this time. So I THANK YOU for sharing. Your post was a great start to my week.


i love your description of surrendering to the sunday lunch. sounds blissful, and yes, the set menu is the way to go!


O.K., here was my Sunday in Northern California. Toddle down to the farmers market in our little neighborhood within a big city, always the oyster man first thing. R months be damned! Then G sits with Zoe the corgi while I sample and buy the beautiful peaches, plums and finally, tomatoes. Also got huge baked german pretzels. Wander over to the coffee shop and snag a front row seat to observe Sunday passing by with a latte. Zip home to collapse after such a tiring morning to sit on the deck and read the NY times for about three hours!


Divine setting for a sublime lunch Vicki! I would have had to forego the main course though for a double helping of the girolles – one of my very favourite things. MOTH would have spoilt the ambience though, asking the Waiter in his pretty average French to turn the radio on so he could hear the progress scores of the Sunday arvo Footy! You just can't take him anywhere!
Millie ^_^


Yuummmm, would have loved to have been with you. Sunday lunch is the best, feels like it doesn't have to end. love Carla x


Oh, your blog is beautiful…but it makes me feel really home sick!I grew up going to L'Isle sur la Sorgue every Sunday for the Market…now I live in Australia;)

Laura [What I Like]

Ah, sounds like perfection! I couldn't agree more about Sunday lunches, they truly are special occasions (despite that it would be possible to celebrate on a weekly basis).


Back In Michigan there was actually a small bistro that was perfection francaise…and 2 Sundays a month I made my way there to meet up with friends for brunch.
The owner/chef lived in France for 8 years & returned home tyo dleight my palette many mnay times. He even made his jams.
Hopefully there were finds waiting for you to take home.

Kelly - Little French Nest

Oh wow! I remember this restaurant from our trip last year. I could have spent a whole week endlessly looking in that amazing little town. I bought a few magic pieces which I will always treasure (so hard to get things back to Australia!!!). You are so lucky xxx


Will you PLEEEEEEEZZZZZZ show photos of the brocantes and flea markets there with close ups of great stuff. Thanks.


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