Despite the small town of Forcalquier boasting that it’s “higher than the Alps” (give or take 4,000 meters), Marcus de Vere’s wine bistro awakens your most base instincts! Once you head past the blue and gold facade, you’ll want to fill up on good wine and fresh products. Hailing from the land of scones and Stilton, the trained sommelier first sharpened his corkscrew at Noble Fine Liquor and P. Franco in London, before settling down with his bottles in tow alongside Henriette, his wife and business partner, in this former chocolate shop. That’s where, from behind his Formica-topped counter, he sends out braised chard and tomatoes with ricotta and Parmesan served with flash-seared polenta; sweet and sour beets seasoned with honey and vinegar, to wake up the goat cheese served with a pretzel and dill; or even some simple but still delightful Galician sardines canned by Pyscis 2019, perfect with sourdough bread; before ending the meal with a semifreddo plus a citrus salad. Our only word to the wise: on nights when there’s a big game or the owner is feeling a little lazy, the cuisine is sometimes a little less impressive… // Yves Inoveritas
FEELING THIRSTY? : Raise a glass! La Mifa, a cinsault from the Hautes-Alpes produced by Le Chai Perché (€23 a bottle), Stammtisch, an Alsatian white from Léonard Dietrich (€31), or a sparkling Catalan wine from Els Vinyerons (€26)… plus wines served by the glass at €5, no matter the bottle!
PRICE: : À la carte €20-35.
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