If you didn't know already, I am a total Mediterranean at heart. So you can imagine my elation when I got invited to dine at Chateau Eza, hands down my favorite SLH property on the globe. This hotel and location screams romantic elegance; you have to climb cobblestone steps to get there. Oh, but when you get there? Heaven on earth.
How could you not squeal in excitement and awe to the unrivaled views of the Mediterranean? I have been going to Eze for several years now and have always made it a ritual to have a drink at Chateau Eza as well as to drink in the pristine, sun-kissed sea coupled with the varying landscapes.
"God must be a painter. Why else would we have have so many colors?"
Diana Martazov, the cordial Marketing manager of Chateau Eza, led us into a beautifully private balcony, reserved just for us. My friends, behold. I was in Provence heaven. This is what it's all about. It's an honor to share the joy of being here. Nothing better than to start off with a glass of champagne paired with delicious focaccia bread as we toasted the gift of life itself.
Thankfully, the restaurant offers 3 and 4 course meals and à la carte dining. Considering French food is incredibly rich (mmm my favorite), we opted for à la carte dining. Now this is Michelin Star dining - they haven't had one since 2016 and are working to get it back next year - so be mindful of pricing. I must say, Gregory is not a fan of Michelin Star dining because he finds it pretentious but I enjoy it every now and then because I'm a foodie who enjoys art on a plate.
Amuse-bouche, which literally translates to "mouth amuser" is what whets your appetite, offering a glimpse of the gastronomic journey your taste buds are about to embark. Here's a delicate ball of crab that was melt in your mouth perfection. Tiny but just enough to get my appetite going.
Gregory loves foie gras so as a starter, he ordered a gorgeous plate of foie gras with textures of beetroot. I'm not a foie gras fan but can eat it from time to time. This looked rather tempting :)
This starter did not come with bread for some reason. The only critique I have to offer is having to ask for butter 3 times. It should be a given in France to already have butter on the table :)
One of our waiters and extremely competent sommelier, Sebastian, was magnificent. He floated around like a swan and was extremely graceful in demeanor, giving new life to the meaning of hospitality. He comes from a hospitality background starting in Lille. It's no surprise he is brilliant at what he does. And his passion shines from the inside out which I truly love.
He suggested a most excellent wine: Auxey-Durresses 2008. Sebastian was extremely helpful and knowledgeable in wine selection that paired well with our meal. Gregory chose outside of his suggestions because we go for higher alcohol content :D
I skipped on starters and dove right into ordering my main course: Mediterranean Denti - fish bouillabaisse style - wilted fennel, baby potatoes and a thin slice of parmesan bread, topped with a garlic clove in a rockfish sauce.
It was sinfully tasty. I found myself drinking up the soup. I only wish there was more!
Gregory ordered a simple dish of lamb with summer vegetables and in a roquette salad sauce dotted with pea puree. He enjoyed it though it was a bit over salted. And that's saying something since Gregory usually adds salt to his meals.
By this point, we had no room for dessert but we always polish off a meal with double espressos.
Not having dessert in France is basically a faux pas. That being said, Sebastian and the rest of the fabulous staff delivered this stunning, dainty array of bite sized goodies. My favorites were the balls of vanilla ice cream in chocolate cups and the white chocolate lollies :)
We definitely had to unbutton our pants by this point, if not sooner :D
The actual hotel is cozily and lavishly inviting. Not bad for a 400 year old Chateau. What I mean by cozy is that there are only 14 rooms, some equipped with balconies, sea views, and/or fireplaces, all individually decorated. I cannot emphasize enough how incredibly warm the staff was. It is so refreshing to be surrounded by restaurant staff who are passionate about their work. I believe it's because waitressing in France is a profession, not a job.
Waltzing in this Chateau feels like "coming home." I deem Chateau Eza as the quintessential luxury boutique hotel, hands down.
It is the gem of the whole Small Luxury Hotels Group. It's a shame it wasn't included in the SLH hotel awards this year.
But I digress...
Eze is definitely a quaint, Medieval village worth visiting on your next Provence adventure, even if it's only to visit the elegant terrace to gaze at this view. A meal isn't necessary if you don't want to dent your wallet your first day there :D However, I am writing this post because it IS worth it, in my humble opinion.
High end hospitality resides at Chateau Eza. A warm thank you to the staff for providing, as always, a memorable experience.
Rue de la Pise, 06360 Eze Village, France
+33 4 93 41 12 24