When you’re talking about France, you often have this image of a nice table with fresh food, strong cheeses and a good bottle of wine. Well, let’s be honest: it sounds amazing. It is even more amazing once you found the perfect market to make such table.
Where is it ?
Sanary-sur-mer is a french little town, located on the Mediterranean coast. It is about one hour drive from Marseille. For many years already, is organized what has been voted as “the most beautiful market in France”. And I can’t disagree with that.
What can you expect ?
The place is so special. All the booths are showing amazing fresh products, many from the region itself. You can find all sorts of fruits and vegetables (tomatoes, figs, strawberries, asparagus, avocados, radishes, herbs…). It feels like a piece of art with all the beautiful colors displayed in front of your eyes. Of course, you cannot resist the incredible smells all around.
More than this, there are plenty of merchants selling their own cheeses (one booth has the best “comte” you can ever find!), meat, delicatessens or specialties like “cade” (a sort of polenta made with chickpeas) getting out of the oven in front of you. And as I mentioned, Sanary being right on the sea, you can find booths with fresh fish and shellfish. If you will arrive early enough (no need to exaggerate, 9AM is early enough), you could also purchase some fresh fish from the sea, directly from the booth standing right in front of the boat that fished them just a few hours before.
Why is it so special ?
Right next to the market, there is the Sanary harbor. It is one of the most beautiful and colored places you can imagine. The half circle of the beach, the wooden boats docking, the breaking waves on the stones create a feeling of relaxation and calmness. In front of the harbor, you can easily walk through the little paved streets and enjoy the boutiques and bakeries of the place. One boulangerie has actually the best butter croissant I have ever tasted!
There is no one time I came back home without stopping in Sanary. This place is filling my soul. I usually go there on Sundays mornings, walk through the boardwalk, then sit for a coffee a table overlooking at the sea. Only then, I start going through all the booths and flavors of the market, picking what would be a delicious homemade lunch.