on't expect to find traditional crusty baguettes with a creamy white dough at Boulangerie Simon's stand at the marché. This baker specializes in pain artisanal -- hefty, country-style breads. Even a quick stop at their stand will quickly impress you that French bakers not only excel at making baguettes:

Pain Rustique, which comes plain or with walnuts, raisins or olives, is a perfect bread to enjoy as toast for breakfast (topped with some of the Boulangerie's confitures!) or on a picnic with ripe cheeses from the marché and a bottle of cold rosé from the Maîtres Vignerons in Cogolin, the best place in the area to buy local wines.

Pain de Campagne and Pain Rustique de Berger are huge 14" domed rounds that will delight anyone who loves chewy bread.

On the other end of the baking spectrum, Boulangerie Simon also produces very fine pastries:

Tarte aux pignons: A flaky crust filled with an almond pastry cream and a layer of Boulangerie Simon's own home-made raspberry confiture and then topped with pine nuts.
Fondant Châtaignes: A dense cake made of chestnut purée baked in a tarte shell. It's not sweet, but it's elegant and simple.
Tarte Tatin: A classic flaky pastry dough topped with a layer of perfectly sliced caramelized apples, baked to their melting point.

If you are tempted by these breads and pastries, a visit to the Boulangerie Simon in la Môle is a must! At the blue and white shop on the RN 98 about 20 minutes inland from St.-Tropez, you'll find a very simple bakery that's open 24 hours a day where you can sample the full range of Boulangerie Simon's breads and pastries. The small shop adjacent to the bakery has an entire wall lined with doily-capped jars of home-made jams in fetching combinations:

raspberry and pine nuts
green tomato
gelée made from local wines

Boulangerie Simon's jams are not sold at the marché. So a visit to the shop in la Môle is an essential part of your stay in St.-Tropez. Not only do these jams make wonderful gifts for family and friends, bringing home your own supply helps extend memories of the true artistry of the Boulangerie Simon.


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