Kate Hill

Camont

Gascony

France

Who?

Kate Hill lives and cooks at Camont and teaches in kitchens around the Globe.

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Welcome. I am Kate Hill, a published author and professional cook and teacher, mentor, coach, and fairy godmother. Thirty years ago I found Camont laying in ruin alongside the Canal de Garonne; I sailed into this fruitful spot in France on my Dutch canal barge, the Julia Hoyt, beginning the first gastronomic charters in Gascony. Camont soon became a lively homeport and its 300-year-old kitchen became the focus for hundreds of hungry friends and guests over the years. Home, gite, and gardens—it wasn't long before I started teaching cooking classes in that French Kitchen at Camont.

The rural diversity of Gascony continues to inspire me and the food I cook everyday at Camont. As one of Gascony's most passionate ambassadors, Let me guide you through the simple tricks and techniques to celebrate the best local produce: luxurious foie gras to the best ever summery tomato tartes.  

From crafting globe-trotting Cassoulets to rolling out buttery Croustade aux Pommes, I teach the basics of French cuisine, the fine points of Gascon cooking, and how to master the cooking of Southwest France. I write about my neighbors, the larger than life characters of Gascony, the beautiful villages and landscapes, and the great food in International Magazine like Saveur and on my Stories blog. Dive in!

What?

Camont is an 18th Century French farmhouse, a cooking school, a culinary retreat.

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French farmhouse, kitchen, pigeonnier, piggery, and barn— Camont has been my home and culinary retreat since 1989. I teach here in three kitchens: the original cozy 18th-century old French Kitchen, the new 600 square foot Teaching Kitchen, and the outside Garden Kitchen where we grill, smoke, and celebrate the summer wood fire season.  

Camont is like an artist's working studio but instead of paints and canvas, this studio kitchen is colored with jars of herb-scented fruit, herbal aperitifs brewing, and hams curing in the pantry. Camont welcomes old friends and new to discover a rural life I have created, foraged by the seasons, gathered within old stone walls, and decorated with the fruits of our culinary labors.

Writers, photographers, artists, and cooks thrive side by side within the fertile nooks and crannies at Camont. Read Camas Davis' new book 'Killing It' that she wrote about studying butchery and charcuterie at Camont. Camas returned as a writer to Camont to finish writing her life journey here. Artists, gardeners, photographers, and Camont has been a gastronomic gathering spot in Gascony since 1724. Here’s what Jamie Beck of Ann Street Studios saw.

Why?

life's short, do something you love. Now. 

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" It was the epitome of what Kate had been talking about, a recipe so simple you can hardly call it a recipe, so tied to this place and the time of year that you can't imagine it anywhere else, so delicious that your hand keeps reaching for just one more, just one more." — Nancy Harmon Jenkins  Food and Wine Magazine

"On our final night in Gascony, we had an aperitif at Kate's farmhouse, which had filled to bursting with culinary gypsies, and headed to a marché nocturne, a night market, perhaps the truest expression of the terroir we'd experienced." — Micheal Ruhlman Conde Nast Traveler

"A few steps outside of her always-buzzing kitchen are big bunches of herbs growing in verdant, leafy profusion. Thyme, variegated two-color sage, lovage, and savory are well-represented, but I was especially pleased to find fresh oregano, which for some reason is elusive in Paris. " — David Lebovitz

Where?

In the heart of Southwest France, in a mythical gastronomic duchy called Gascony.

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Gascony is the very Southwest of Southwest France tucked under the Garonne River and nestled just above the Basque Lands to the south. Not on any Michelin map, the ancient duchy of Gascony is a near mythic place, a cultural and culinary identity, and features heavily in swashbuckling French literature. Hello? Dumas' Three Musketeers anyone? 

Camont is close to Agen andmidway between Bordeaux and Toulouse.  TGV train ride in three hours from Paris; fly from Paris-Orly (ORY) to Agen (AGF) three times a day, or drive from the rest of France (see map below).

Other Questions?