PRIVATE ESCAPE 4 DAYS / 3 NIGHTS
From one Riviera
to the other
L’Hedonist has teamed up with the 3 Michelin-starred Chef Mauro Colagreco to design a journey filled with farmers markets, craftsmen, herbs, oils, fruits, gardens…
A journey about borders as well. The one between France and Italy, the mountains and the sea, and all the frontiers Mauro Colagreco went through before settling in Menton – his chosen home and little piece of paradise.
He was not the first to fall head over heels for the charms of the “Mediterranean pearl”. Before him, artists and celebrities, the cream of the crop from all over the world, built legendary villas on the Riviera, some of which you’ll discover during your journey.
February is when Menton celebrates its king: the lemon, now protected by a PGI label. Lemon is present in all its forms: in the Chef’s dishes, in raviolis, oils, limoncelli...
Lemon is not the only produce that thrives in the warm climate of the bay: fruits, olives and of course flowers do too.
Vine-growing appears to be discreet but on the hillsides of Bellet and Dolceacqua – italian side – clay soils and Mediterranean breeze produce strong and radiant wines.
Inbetween the Rivieras, Mauro Colagreco shares with us his universe and eclectic cooking, to the delight of travellers longing for sunlight and balmy weather.
At the crossroads of the Rivieras, Mauro Colagreco shares his universe and his cosmopolitan cuisine with us, to the delight of travelers who love the sweetness of the sun.
“Menton is a pretty little town, a little unreal like all these places, but where you can nevertheless find some natural corners. Everything is ruled by the sun.”
The three Michelin-starred Chef invites you on a visit of his chosen home, the city of Menton, located on the border between France and Italy. Because he loves his land and knows every hilltop village, vineyard and producer, he exclusively shared for L'Hedonist clients his favourite restaurants and secret spots, the places that endlessly inspire him.
Lemon ravioli workshop
Menton lemon zest and juice, ricotta and grana padano… the recipe appears simple, but to make authentic Menton lemon ravioli, you need the dexterity and tips of Luisa, owner of the official trademark. A workshop full of sunlight.
There is no better way to enter the world of Mauro Colagreco than to visit his vegetable garden. This green paradise he calls his “sanctuary” is at the centre of the recent culinary innovations he has made in his nature-inspired menus. “Until then, the garden was supplying the restaurant. Now, the restaurant is a part of the garden.” From quaint vegetable patch to exceptional dishes.
The Bellet's nectar
Between sea and mountains, a few miles from Nice city centre, a small and discreet family vineyard cultivates biodynamic white and red wines. Nectar of the French Riviera, Bellet is a well-kept secret for amateurs of wines with surprising salinity and acidity. Discover them during a private tasting.
His Majesty the lemon
“Everything is good in a lemon.” Laurent and Adrien, citrus farmers of Menton, share with an open heart their passion for this lemon’s PGI-protected sharp taste, non-bitter peel and vigorous aroma. An inspiring stroll through the terrace of their farm, exploring the 500 year old history of the “king of Menton”.
Lunch with the Rothschild
Architectural extravaganza, outrageous decoration and stupendous rooms: Rothschild’s Villa Ephrussi is a treasure you can’t miss. After a tour of the sumptuous Belle Epoque palace and its lovely gardens imagined by Béatrice de Rothschild, you’ll have a glamourous lunch in the jardin à la française.
and their cheese
L’Hedonist invites you on a visit of the lovely medieval villages in the Nice hinterland: Saint Agnès, Gorbio, Èze… A surprise from the Chef’s cheese producer awaits you on this escape in the hills.
Enter the four dimensions of the Chef’s cooking in this exclusive oil-tasting experience at one of his supplier’s: Leaves (Nepeta), Flowers (Geranium), Fruits (Pink Peppercorn) and Roots (Ginger and Menton lemon).
A dinner at Mirazur is an experience encompassing all the senses. The menu itself is mysterious: will we marvel at a Roots, Fruits, Flowers or Leaves menu? Only the Chef’s vegetable garden knows! The cosmos itself inspires Mauro Colagreco and every day the dishes are reinvented according to the lunar calendar. A poetic parenthesis followed by a delicate announcement of the dishes. Then comes the time for tasting with surprising combinations. It’s not just a gastronomic dinner, it’s a once in a lifetime experience!
An ode to bread
For Mauro, bread is a staple of Mirazur experience. At the beginning of the meal, a loaf of bread is set on the table, to share with others, accompanied by a poem by Pablo Neruda, Ode to Bread. Stop by Mitron Bakery, in Menton, and discover the remarkable aromas of Mauro’s bread and his delicious lemon panettone.
Wines of the white country
A few kilometers west of Menton, in the Italian mountains, Filippo cultivates the rossese di Dolceacqua – the crown jewel of Ligurian grapevines, along with pigato and vermentino. Enjoy a private tasting session of these ruby wines with hints of cherry and wild rose, exalted by the sun and the altitude.
Art by Jean Cocteau
La Villa Santo Sospir is the story of an artist who got bored in the holiday home of his friend Francine Weisweiller. That artist is no other than Jean Cocteau and his boredom led him to start painting murals all over the villa, inspired by Greek and Roman mythology, with striking mosaics, the doors and furniture “tattooed” (as he liked saying).
DAY 1 : NICE - MENTON
. In Roquebrune-Cap-Martin, free visit of the Cap Moderne villa
. Journey to a small family farm in Bellet, a few miles away from Nice. Private wine tasting of biodynamic red and white wines.
. Time at leisure for a stroll along the Garavan boulevard in Menton to admire the authentic French Riviera villas
DAY 2 : BETWEEN FRANCE AND ITALY
. Private visit at the farm of the chef’s citrus fruits suppliers
. Exclusive lemon ravioli workshop followed by lunch
. In a hundred-year-old plant oil factory, taste aromatic oils elaborated with Mauro Colagreco
. Head to Italy tp a private tasting session in a tenuta (vineyard) of rossese di Doleacqua
. On your way back, Mauro Colagreco recommends to dine at the restaurant of his former sous-chef. (to be paid locally)
DAY 3 : HILLTOP VILLAGES
. In Saint-Jean-Cap-Ferrat, visit La Villa Santo Sospir and then Rothschild’s Villa Ephrussi
. Special picnic in the Ephrussi garden
. Explore the vegetable gardens of Mirazur with the chef-gardener
. Meet one the the Mirazur’s cheesemaker and enjoy a tasting session in the small hilltop village of Castellar
. Dinner at the Mirazur restaurant (drinks to be paid locally).
DAY 4 : MENTON - NICE
. Day at leisure. L’Hedonist recommends different options to suit every taste (with supplement): a private cruise to discover the Cannes coastline; a reservation at the Maybourne Riviera beach club with a table booking at CETO ; a day in Monaco with an excursion in Cap d’Ail and a waterfront lunch in A'trego
Clients are advised to drink responsibly