You Can Book a Culinary Stay at Julia Child’s France Vacation Home

There will be butter! Starting in 2017, visitors can remaster the art of French cooking at La Pitchoune.

la pitchoune

Photograph by Sotheby’s

Julia Child fans have been able to visit her Cambridge kitchen since 2001, when the pioneering celebrity chef donated it to the Smithsonian. But soon, a lucky few will be able to make a pilgrimage to another Child kitchen—and actually cook in it.

When La Pitchoune, the rustic Provence home that Paul and Julia Child built, went on the market in late 2015, the listing caught the eye of Smith College alumna Makenna Johnston.

Johnston says she grew up idolizing the trailblazing chef, but it was the 2015 attacks in Paris that galvanized her to buy the house formerly owned by Child, a fellow Smithie.

In March, Johnston and her business partners closed on “La Peetch” (as Child called it). They’re keeping the name—along with the kitchen, featuring the 6-foot-2 Child’s well-organized pegboard and her extra-tall countertops.

Johnston hosts her first guests in May. And starting in 2017, visitors can attend “La Peetch École de Cuisine” (a.k.a. “Courageous Cooking”) to learn how to flip slippery omelets just like Julia: fearlessly. “This is for people dying to unleash their courage in all aspects of creation,” Johnston says.