In the heart of Lou Calen, a beautiful retreat located in Cotignac, Provence, sits a charming restaurant called Jardin Secret. Set in a freestanding house, the restaurant offers a unique dining experience, with tables placed in the cozy living room and dining room, surrounded by an impressive collection of records.
This welcoming atmosphere is a perfect backdrop to the exquisite culinary journey that awaits each guest.
We sat at a table by the window, where we began our dinner with glasses of crisp local white wine. Our appetizer was a beautiful board featuring hummus, tapenade, olives, pita, and traditional chickpea toasts – a delicious array of flavors and textures to commence our dining experience.
Jardin Secret offers a set menu for the entire day, highlighting fresh, seasonal ingredients sourced from the region. If you have any food allergies, be sure to inform the staff in advance, as they are more than happy to accommodate your needs with alternative options.
Our next course was a salad featuring scallop carpaccio and adorned with edible flowers freshly picked from the culinary garden. The delicate flavors of the salad were a perfect segue into the main course, a delectable fish dish accompanied by a side of prized black rice from the Camargue.
Dessert was a delightful fresh strawberry tart, complemented by a scoop of smooth vanilla ice cream. The combination of ripe, juicy strawberries and creamy ice cream was a heavenly way to conclude our meal.
It was an unforgettable culinary experience at Jardin Secret. With its warm ambiance, attentive service, and sophisticated take on Provençal cuisine, it’s no wonder this hidden gem has captured the hearts of its guests and received a green Michelin star.
For a truly special end to your dining experience, Jardin Secret has a fire pit in front where you could unwind with a glass of wine in the crisp Provençal evening air.
Note: Lou Calen provided support for the reporting of this story.