here are three excellent cheese vendors at the marché. Each has his own specialty:

  • Fromagerie Maravéou has an unbelievable selection local chêvre fermier.
  • Auvergne-Jura has a complete selection of robust cheeses from these mountainous regions of France.
  • Chez Bernard, perhaps the oldest cheese vendor at the marché, features the buttery cheeses of the Haute Savoie. Jacques Bernad is the 3rd generation of his family to sell cheese at the Place des Lices.

Monsieur Jacques Bernard, holding a picture of himself as a young boy
in the early 1950's helping his father tend the cheese stand.

It's a daunting task to know where to begin to make your selections from the hundreds of cheeses that are available. We take the motto of Chez Bernard as our guide:

"On n'achète pas au Hasard!"

"One shouldn't buy by chance!"

These three vendors are friendly and reliably have cheeses that are perfectly ripe and ready to eat. Their cheeses generally aren't labeled, so you if you don't recognize them from their shape or wrapper, don't hesitate to ask for a taste. These vendors are happy to provide liberal tastings and often taste along with you, providing commentary on the quality and ripeness of the cheese.

Each of these vendors also sells sinfully delicious farm-made butter and sinfully delicious crème fraîche that is a perfect accompaniment to Boulangerie Simon's Tarte Tatin -- Tropézienne heaven!

At Fromagerie Maravéou you'll find another special treat -- fresh "ravioles à l'ancienne". These are ½" ravioli squares, filled with cheese and parsley that are sold in 6" x 6" sheets. These tiny delicacies are made in Vercors, the mountainous region of the Hautes Alpes near Grenoble and are a traditional dish of that region. Because they're so tiny, they cook in less than a minute and make a perfect light summer supper on a languid evening in St.-Tropez!

 

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