Wednesday, 22 December 2010

A Local Delicacy

When you book a whole day tour with Loire Valley Time Travel you will be treated to lunch in one of a selection of local restaurants, which we have chosen very carefully.

The restaurants are almost invariably the kind of places that locals use eveyday, so they have to maintain a certain standard of food, and because people are proud of their local produce this forms the basis of many of the dishes. Luckily the produce in the Loire Valley is second to none for quality.

An example of this is the Sainte Maure de Touraine chèvre. Ste Maure de Touraine is an AOP (AOC - Appellation d'Origine Contrôlée) cheese from an area which roughly follows the boundaries of the old Province of Touraine. It has to be made by traditional methods - this just about means that all the cheese is made by hand from fresh ingredients, either on farms or in dairy co-operatives.

The cheese is made in the shape of a log about 17cm (7") long and has a rye straw running through it to help roll the cheese as it is being formed. The straw is stamped with the name of the maker and the tradition is to use a knife that isn't too sharp to cut around the straw so it is left in the cheese.

We think Ste Maure de Touraine is the finest goat's cheese you can buy. If you email us and book a tour, you can make your own decision.