Aug 27, 2018

Beautiful Bordeaux Culinary Cruise with Julie Goodwin

Scenic recently partnered with much-loved Australian cook, Julie Goodwin for an exclusive gourmet sailing. Julie shares her firsthand experience here.

It’s one of those pinch-me moments in life, when you’re invited to be the guest cook on a beautiful river cruise ship – in France! I have always loved all things French. I studied the language at school and of course love the cuisine and all the techniques it has given us. So the opportunity to explore the beautiful Bordeaux and surrounding regions was too good to be true.

Our Scenic Space-Ship, Scenic Diamond, was absolutely stunning. From the minute hubby Mick and I stepped aboard, we were looked after by the professional, friendly (and funny!) crew.

Our Suite was so luxurious and spacious. We settled in with great excitement for the trip ahead.

I was excited to meet the on board Chef, who took me on a tour of his galley (kitchen). It was spotless, beautifully organised and stocked to the hilt with beautiful produce.

Cruising the river, we made many stops with a huge variety of options to look around. From ancient citadels, to historic villages, an underground limestone cathedral and of course, the vineyards.

A standout evening was at Château d'Agassac in the midst of the vineyards. This Scenic Enrich experience included a glass of champagne on the lawn followed by a magical twilight classical concert.

Our Scenic Freechoice onshore excursion to the house of Remy Martin, in Cognac was amazing. The history of the town and the family, and the craft behind it was just awesome.

One of my favourite excursions was an e-bike ride around the citadel of Blaye. Through the ruins, past the magnificent spring gardens and stone houses, along the riverside and of course all through the historic vineyards. I couldn’t keep the smile off my face – it was so special.

The included activities on board were equally wonderful. There was an oyster tasting, brought fresh from Arcachon onto the ship and shucked in front of us. They were absolutely to die for, and were selected with a regional white wine paired by the ship’s sommelier.

Another event was the cocktail tasting, with a historic cocktail on show. But possibly my favourite tasting was the cheese from the on board cheese and wine cellar. Offering the most divine array of fromages paired with local wines.

In the midst of all these activities we were fed (frequently and well), we were entertained every evening by a range of musicians and fun activities, and we were looked after by every single person on the crew.

Cooking in the on board cooking school, Scenic Culinaire was so much fun. The chefs sourced the freshest and most beautiful ingredients from local markets.

I made a scallop dish and a duck dish, to highlight the cuisine of the region. Everybody got to taste the food and also received the recipes to try again at home.

It was a trip that Mick and I will never ever forget, truly one of life’s most incredible experiences. I wouldn’t hesitate to recommend it to anyone wanting to travel in style, with absolutely everything included. We loved it and would do it again in a heartbeat!

11 Day Beautiful Bordeaux River Cruise

Bordeaux > Bordeaux

On this spectacular 11-day cruise, visit Grand Cru Class wine estates, explore the Cognac region and sample its famous brandy, or fresh oysters from the waters of Arcachon Bay. You’ll find that beautiful Bordeaux is everything you imagined it to be, and more.