Tag Archives: Wine Cellar

Portugal: Alentejo Road Trip

Portugal-Alentejo-Arronches-Walking-Path-3-Photo©Mademoiselle Le K

Near Arronches

Portugal-Alentejo-Arronches-Walking-Path-1-Photo©Mademoiselle Le K

Bela Natureza

This morning, departure from Avis towards Arronches, in the district of Portalegre (Alto Alentejo, close to the Spanish border). On the program: visit the most important group of prehistoric cave paintings outdoors in Portugal, in the Junco Valley (Vale de Junco).        

Classified national monument, they were designed between 4000 and 2000 years before Christ and represent the consecration of the place: the scientific interpretations differ (photo below). Last year I returned to the superb Archaeological Museum of Côa (Centre of Portugal). I am fan: child, I wanted to be a paleontologist, archaeologist …    

Magnificent nature! We continue with a walk on the walking path PR1 ARR “Feel Alentejo Nature” – Percurso Pedestrian da Esperança (about 6km / 1:45 / low difficulty level) in the Serra of Sao Mamede Natural Park. Better than a thousand words, a few photos! And old girlfriends, cows ; )

Portugal-Alentejo-Arronches-Pinturas-Rupestres-do-Vale-de-Junco-1-Photo©Mademoiselle Le KPortugal-Alentejo-Arronches-Walking-Path-5-Photo©Mademoiselle Le KPortugal-Alentejo-Arronches-Walking-Path-4-Photo©Mademoiselle Le KPortugal-Alentejo-Arronches-Walking-Path-6-Photo©Mademoiselle Le KPortugal-Alentejo-Arronches-Walking-Path-8-Photo©Mademoiselle Le K Portugal-Alentejo-Arronches-Walking-Path-9-Photo©Mademoiselle Le K


Portuga-Alentejo-Estremoz-1-Photo©Mademoiselle Le K

The Old Town

Estremoz for lunch. I really enjoy the small intimate streets of the old town, deserted at lunchtime. Occasionally, a silhouette crosses. The contrast between blue sky and white walls, brightness, the South. As a photographer, I need a beautiful natural light!

What I also really like in Portugal, Japan and Croatia: it’s clean, streets are super clean. A real pleasure!

Portuga-Alentejo-Estremoz-7-Photo©Mademoiselle Le K

The Lunch

A place not to miss the Mercearia Gadanha restaurant, where we had a long lunch. Very good food in a cool atmosphere and decoration (photos below). And for chocolate addicts: a large selection of chocolates (including Belgian chocolates) in the deli section of the restaurant.

Portuga-Alentejo-Estremoz-5-Restaurant-Photo©Mademoiselle Le KPortuga-Alentejo-Estremoz-4-Photo©Mademoiselle Le K


Portugal-Alentejo-Monsaraz-1-Photo©Mademoiselle Le K

Open-air Museum      

Like Saint Emilion in France, Monsaraz is an open-air museum medieval city in which you aimlessly wander … Just for the pleasure. And enjoy an Alentejo wine tasting on the rooftop terrace of the Ervideira winery.    

Some boho shops, winding clean streets and an arena that in September and Easter hosts bullfighting festivals. And panoramic views of the river Rio Guadiana (last photo). Now we drive to the famous Évora.

Portugal-Alentejo-Monsaraz-5-Photo©Mademoiselle Le K  Portugal-Alentejo-Monsaraz-6-Photo©Mademoiselle Le KPortugal-Alentejo-Monsaraz-3A-Photo©Mademoiselle Le KPortugal-Alentejo-Monsaraz-7-Photo©Mademoiselle Le KPortugal-Alentejo-Monsaraz-2-Photo©Mademoiselle Le KPortugal-Alentejo-Monsaraz-4-Photo©Mademoiselle Le K

Photos : © Mademoiselle Le K – Tous droits réservés.

Next stop: Évora


Visit Alentejo & Visit Portugal


Many thanks to Visit Alentejo and Visit Portugal for this amazing invitation. As always these are my opinions.

Club Med Val Thorens Sensations: Great Restaurants & Bars

Club Med-Val Thorens Sensations-France-Epicurious-Panoramic View-1-Photo Mademoiselle Le K-copyright 2014

What about a ski weekend in Val Thorens?

Sorry for the long silence, I had some technical issues on the blog. And I just returned from a wonderful ski weekend at the new Club Med Val Thorens Sensations 4 tridents (in Savoy, France), where I was invited to the inauguration. I haven’t set foot in a Club Med for ages (yes I was DJ in another life)!

Still the same winner formula: as soon as you are in the Club, you feel good. Arrived around 11:30 p.m. (after a trip with 3 hour bus), my first discovery was the main restaurant. 

The Main Restaurant

Club Med-Val Thorens Sensations-France-Main Restaurant-Breakfast-1-Photo Mademoiselle Le K-copyright 2014

User-friendly graphic Yurts

I really discovered the main restaurant at the breakfast, the next morning of my arrival (above photo montage). 

Big crush for the yurts scattered in different rooms of the restaurant. They create a sort of intimate cocoon, where I really like to eat and chat under a subdued light.

The dishes are nicely presented. And as always there is many choice and something for everyone. During my short stay, I really enjoyed fresh or dried fruits, ice creams and Kusmi Tea. Shame on me : )

On the photo montage below: No. 3, fish stew in a small red pot, so chic! No. 2, a set of starters elaborated by star chef Edouard Loubet. No. 1, owls gallery at reception and No. 4, the bench of the Canadian (woodcutter) cousin at the gourmet lounge Epicurious. 

Club Med-Val Thorens Sensations-France-Main Restaurant-Breakfast-2-Photo Mademoiselle Le K-copyright 2014

Breakfast At The Epicurious, Gourmet Lounge

Club Med-Val Thorens Sensations-France-Epicurious-Gourmet Lounge-4-Photo Mademoiselle Le K-copyright 2014

Cozy Atmosphere At The Epicurious

When I finished my first ski lesson in the late afternoon, I joined a part of the group for a drink at the Gourmet Lounge: Epicurious. The outdoor terrace offers panoramic views of the snowy peaks (first photo).

Almost sleepy in a comfortable armchair, while listening some music (photo 7) … when I notice that there’s a live musician and not a soundtrack (LOL!). The space is dedicated to the restoration and local products, including a really nice wine cellar. 

The Epicurious restaurant and wine cellar are decorated by Sophie Jacquemin, in charge of the interior design of the whole Club Med Val Thorens Sensations. The tasting dinner is designed by the chef Edouard Loubet, a native of Val Thorens, with 2 Michelin stars, 5 Gault & Millau toques and chef of the year in 2011.

The morning of departure, I take a late breakfast with a view of the mountains. There is less choice than in the main restaurant, but it’s the quieter and more exclusive, with a great service. On the photo montage below: a plate made of cheese, smoked ham and fresh cereal bread. 

Club Med-Val Thorens Sensations-France-Epicurious-Gourmet Lounge-1-Photo Mademoiselle Le K-copyright 2014Club Med-Val Thorens Sensations-France-Epicurious-Gourmet Lounge-3-Photo Mademoiselle Le K-copyright 2014Club Med-Val Thorens Sensations-France-Epicurious-Gourmet Lounge-2-Photo Mademoiselle Le K-copyright 2014

Tea time At The Main Bar

Club Med-Val Thorens Sensations-France-Main Bar-Tea Time-Macaroons-1-Photo Mademoiselle Le K-copyright 2014

Yummy break at the main bar: few snacks after skiing! We’re lazily laying in the lounge, with a choice of excellent macaroons, chocolate cakes etc … Before getting ready for dinner, LOL!

Photos : Mademoiselle Le K – copyright 2014, tous droits réservés.


Club Med Val Thorens Sensations  

Related posts :  



Many thanks to all the team of Club Med for this invitation and as always these are my opinions! 

Vila Vita Parc, Portugal: Restaurants & Wine Cellar

Vila Vita Parc-Restaurants-Cellar Cave de Vinhos-2A-Photo Mademoiselle Le K-copyright 2014

Breakfast overlooking the ocean 

at the Atlântico restaurant: exhilarating (picture 1)! Around 10 am, the sun is already pretty strong and the day before we were afraid it would rain! The green garden bordering the coast, draws perfectly on the ocean blue.

The view is stunning: picture 2, taken at the Ocean restaurant, the ocean view is quite similar to the terrace of the Atlântico! Every day we choose a new table at breakfast with a different view of the ocean.

The buffet of the Atlântico restaurant is varied: excellent fresh fruits bursting with sunshine, with a friendly discreet service. Photos 2, 3 and 4: Ocean, the famous gourmet restaurant with two Michelin stars! Photo 2: Empty wine decanters, like in an alchemist’s lair … Photo 3: A giant Fabergé egg in malachite!

Vila Vita Parc-Restaurants-Cellar Cave de Vinhos-5-Photo Mademoiselle Le K-copyright 2014

The best fish in the world

I dreamed of a great fish to change (LOL!). We dine “casual chic” in Adega, the restaurant of Portuguese specialties. Discovering my huge dish, I am impressed by the size of the fish (picture above and on the last picture of this article : photo 1, the terrasse of Adega)! 

I learned that chefs of gourmet restaurants in London and New York charter aircraft with fish caught in the area the same day. This year, the fish of the Algarve have received the title of best fish in the world.

I’m not a foodie, but I can appreciate some great ingredients: my fish is excellent! As a starter, I chose delicious shrimps! A kind of proteins orgy : ) 

Vila Vita Parc-Restaurants-Cellar Cave de Vinhos-6-Photo Mademoiselle Le K-copyright 2014

Do you know the Portuguese Pétrus?

No, this is not a Madeira wine, but a grand cru of Douro, North of Portugal: the Barca Velha (picture above).

At seven meters under ground (the adventure begins!), we meet the sommelier José Figueirinha for a private tour of the Vila Vita Parc wine cellar. Exceptional cellar in Portugal, with an average of 11,000 bottles (pictures below 2 & 3).

Many great Portuguese and French wines (including Château Latour), but also Italian, Spanish or South African wines … And a room especially dedicated to Porto Vintage.

Vila Vita Parc-Restaurants-Cellar Cave de Vinhos-10-Photo Mademoiselle Le K-copyright 2014

Photos : Mademoiselle Le K – copyright 2014, tous droits réservés


www.vilavitaparc.com, the restaurants : Atlântico, OceanAdega & the Wine cellar, Cave de Vinhos 

Related posts : 


My friend and I were hosted by the Vila Vita Parc. As always these are my opinions! Many thanks to the Vila Vita Parc team.