Deep in the heart of the Var, north of Brignoles, and a wee bit past the tiny predominantly organic village of Correns, there is a long and winding road just off the Grand Rue (also called the D45). Soon after making that turn, on to Le Collet de Recoux, that narrow but paved road abruptly ends, depositing the driver and her passengers on a slightly wider road, but one riddled with pot holes rivaling those of New England roads after a particularly harsh winter, and covered with loose rocks of limestone the size of those used to pave the Via Domitia. A year ago, when I first made this excursion, I recall regretting that I’d opted for a mid-sized Peugeot sedan rather a slightly more expensive quatre-quatre and fervently praying my radiator would remain intact. But, casting myself as the ever-intrepid reporter, I said to myself, "let the adventure begin," and forged ahead, bouncing, swerving, and weaving to the top.
Once there, I was rewarded with Domaine Saint Andrieu, a glorious sight, some 380 meters high, at the base of the majestic Grand Bessillon. It was a visit well worth the trepidation I confess to experiencing midway up; but like having a baby, I quickly forgot the road and, in fact, made the trip again just a couple of weeks ago (in another mid-sized rental car). Nothing had changed [...]