The French rarely talk about a wine without at the same time discussing the food which goes best with it – often in much detail and with great passion. So it seemed natural to offer a tour based around the two great loves of the French people: food and wine.
The Loire Valley is often called “the garden of France”, so fertile and productive is the region. Great food, locally grown and freshly harvested, can be seen at all of the daily outdoor markets and we will visit one to take in some of the atmosphere and sample some produce. Some specialities change with the seasons, while others are available all year ‘round.
Spring is the time for strawberries and asparagus, grown in the sandy soil between the Loire and the Cher, while in the autumn wild mushrooms are collected. Game, including duck, wild boar and venison are delicious in the winter time. In a region with so many rivers, it comes as no surprise to find local fish including Sander, Pike, Salmon and Eels on restaurant menus.
The Loire is famous for its delicious, creamy goats cheese (chèvre) and the goats in the Loire are special creatures. Descended from the Moorish livestock that came to the region in the Middle Ages, cheesemakers produce cheeses of all shapes and sizes, all equally delicious. Sainte Maure which is long and cylindrical in shape, Selles-sur-Cher, which is flat and round and pyramid shaped Valençay are all well-known Touraine cheeses.
Limestone caves, which once were quarries to supply the stone needed to build the towns and villages, churches and chateaux, have since been used both to produce and age wine, and to grow mushrooms. We will visit some of these so please bring something warm to wear – it’s 12°C in there!
Chocolate lovers will enjoy a visit to the chocolate maker near Chambord, who will introduce us to its origins, cultivation and the different phases of production. These and many other treats await and of course, wherever we tour there will be wines of different styles to sample.
"All-inclusive" full day tour pricing and availability : €320 per person including local pickup. Minimum 2 people. Tours available all year 'round - please contact us to check availablity.
|Mid March to Mid November|
|Monday - Sunday||9.30 - 17.30|
|Mid November to Mid March|
|Monday - Sunday||Closed|