Start the day with coffee, pastries, savoury eggs, and more at Closerie les Capucines, prepared fresh-to-order by the team. For those looking to break a sweat before a long day of exploring, depart the hotel and venture out for a scenic run along the Cuisance; those looking to lounge in luxury can simply rest by the hotel’s pool and bask in the morning sun.
For wine lovers curious to discover tasting rooms around the region, we recommend booking appointments for late Saturday morning or afternoon (not during lunch hours, of course) on Saturday over Sunday. Head southwest to the scenic Château Chalon or L’Etoile area for a breathtaking drive through the region. Explore local wineries such as Domaine de Montbourgeau or Domaine Berthet-Bondet, though be sure to call or email and reserve in advance.
After a long morning of tasting south of Arbois, head to lunch at Café Restaurant de l’Abbaye (1 Pl. Guillaume de Poupet, 39570 Baume-les-Messieurs) while in the area of Baume-les-Messieurs. This traditional French restaurant offers gourmet cuisine focused around local flavours and delicacies, prepared at the hands of Chef Francis Piot. All meat and fish is sourced sustainably, and a majority of the menu’s offerings are crafted from organic products. Serious cheese fans, the fondue is a must – and be sure to save room for dessert.
Although the majority of folks won’t find themselves hungry after lunch at the Café de l’Abbaye, for cheese lovers, a visit to the Maison de La Vache qui rit (25 Rue Richebourg, 39000 Arbois) is a must. Located just in 15-20 minutes by car from the restaurant, this light-hearted visit offers a journey through the company’s history, with audio tours available for visiting guests. Founded by Léon Bel’s granddaughter, Catherine Sauvin, back in 2009, this 2,200-square meter space offers insight on both cheese production marketing, and even healthy eating, all delivered in a joyful tone against a lively backdrop.
For those looking to hit a winery on the way back to Arbois, stop in Poligny and visit the dynamic, forward-thinking Valentin Morel. As always, be sure to call or email in advance. Should a trip to the cheese maison not be your thing, head back to Arbois and take a visit at the Musée de la Vigne et du Vin du Jura (Rue du Château Pecauld, 39600 Arbois) – just be sure to get there before it closes at 6:00PM.
Back in Arbois, head for a refreshing, pre-dinner apéritif at Bistrot Le Pixie’s (37 Pl. de la Liberté, 39600 Arbois) for a cold beer, tasty snacks, and if you’re lucky, a good dose of rock and roll. Over ten beers are served on tap at a time, though the bar’s non-tap offerings go far beyond what one can count on two hands. Should you find yourself peckish, hefty cheese and charcuterie boards are available.
Before heading to dinner at Le Grapiot (Rue Bagier, 39600 Pupillin), drive up to the village of Pupillin for a breathtaking, panoramic view of the Jura’s vine-covered landscape. If you’re able, secure a tasting appointment with nearby Domaine de la Renardière before heading back down for dinner – and be sure to ask for a taste of Jean-Michel’s son’s latest beer project. End the night with dinner at Le Grapiot, a wine-focused restaurant with a love for tradition and all things terroir-focused. Savour seasonal plates crafted by Julie and Samuel Richardet, finished with the restaurant’s signature nems au chocolat or ploussard-flavoured sorbet.