Local specialties & markets
Mother Nature is generous in Touraine, Loire Valley: the mild climate and fertile soil have contributed to making the region productive, with an abundance of fruits and vegetables, as well as more rare produce such as black truffles, saffron and fine wines... It's no surprise that Touraine is known as the "Garden of France" with such a wealth of produce!
On the market stalls
A wide variety of produce is available on the market stalls: all the fruits and early fruits and vegetables of course, artichokes, asparagus (Touraine is France's second largest asparagus-producing region), mushrooms (grown in the troglodyte caves)... Regarding cheeses, the sainte-maure-de-touraine, easily identified thanks to the wisp of straw through its centre, is the local star on the goat cheese platter (you can visit the farm of the Cabri-au-lait or the Passerelles museum).
Even if the video below is in French, you may watch it to disvoer the steps for producing the sainte-maure-de-touraine:
The local delicatessen products are delicious: rillettes from Tours (A.O.P. protected designation of origin label), rillons and andouillettes made in the traditional manner using a cord. The Loire and well-stocked ponds are sources of fish: eels, zander, perch and shad.
Another surprising local specialty from the Rivarennes village is "poires tapées", or dried pears. And last but not least, wine lovers will appreciate the hillside production: vouvray, chinon, bourgueil, montlouis-sur-loire... in all, more than a dozen AOC wines are waiting to be tasted. A visit to the Loire Valley would not be complete without tasting the Loire Valley wines!
The orchards of Loire Valley, France.
Where to find those products ?
We recommend that you make your purchases at one of the many weekly markets where you will find fresh, locally-made products, at reasonable prices. Experience gastronomy during your holiday in Tours, there is a market every day of the week, in one of the city's neighbourhoods. Markets in Loches, Amboise and Chinon are also worth visiting. Throughout the year, theme markets are also held: truffle markets in Marigny-Marmande, gourmet markets at Château de Candé, the saffron market in Preuilly-sur-Claise...
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