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Monday, February 11, 2013

02/12 - Exquisitely French!

This week, Slow Living gets a glimpse into some of the food, wine, regions and culture of France.  We get an overview of the wonderful wine region of Burgundy, learn the history of Dijon from mustard house, Rein de Dijon and hear the magical story of a family of apiarists from Apidis.  And La Tourangelle's founder sheds new light on the sumptous nut oils that the Loire Valley's historical oil company has started to make in California, bringing the true sense of "French Slow Living Flavor" to the US with French finesse!

Visit,  to find out more about the French food and beverage.

Mrs. Cécile Dechelotte-Petit
Vive La Bourgogne

Vive la Bourgogne! was created in May 2006 on the initiative of 10 Burgundian companies. Today, it unites over 20 companies, which produce the best Burgundian regional specialties. Its objective is to promote, communicate, and develop sales of member companies.

Space, pure country air, romance, peace, beauty, tradition, sophistication, style and the simple pleasures of life combine - look no further …
Burgundy, or Bourgogne as it is known in Europe, is made up of four departments - the Yonne, the Côte d’Or, Nièvre, and Saône-et-Loire. Dijon is the capital of the whole region - a lovely, traditional town to visit. Everywhere in the verdant countryside there are unspoilt villages, and somehow, even when the buildings are falling apart, they still manage to charm. There are architectural details at every turn.

For many people traveling through France from north to south, the Abbaye de Fontenay and the vineyards of Beaune are just attractive road signs along the way. But linger a while and this area of France will quickly captivate. Châteaux and canals, beautiful countryside and a relaxed rural lifestyle await you.

In the land where food and wine is an art form, enjoy leisurely lunches and dinners, lovingly prepared. Burgundy wines are famous across the world. The vineyards, planted mostly with Pinot Noir and Chardonnay grape varieties, are lovingly tended and produce the prestigious red burgundy wine and white burgundy wines respectively. Visit some of the wineries, the beautiful and historic abbeys and châteaux, walk or drive around this gloriously unspoilt countryside. The roads are uncluttered and the pace of life meanders along. The local people are hospitable and you will find that it is a perfect place to explore. With a surface area of 31,500 sq km, Burgundy is larger than Belgium, with a low density of population totalling 1.6m.

Take a canoe on one of the lovely lakes in the Morvan forest, or play golf at a grand château. Burgundy has a rich and glorious past, and there are abbeys, churches and museums, archaeological sites and monasteries to explore. We look at the myths and legends, with some surprising results. Go wine tasting, visit the markets and delight in the choice in the supermarkets. Visits to the boulangerie are a ritual in France and the freshly baked baguettes and patisserie, impossible to resist.

Ease of transport has been one of the factors in the greatness of Burgundy throughout history, and the canals have played an important role in this. Today, tourists enjoy these waterways - the Canal de Bourgogne, du Nivernais and du Centre - 1,000 km of navigable routes and ports along the Saône river are equipped for wide-gauge barges. They are now used mainly for pleasure, barging holidays or canal cruising, and cycling and walking along the tow paths are popular.

The TGV high-speed train crosses the region, and the A6 motorway makes Burgundy an important crossroads in France. There are 597 km of motorways in all, making for good access to Germany, Luxembourg, Belgium, the Netherlands, Switzerland, Italy and the United Kingdom. We have guidelines to make your travelling easy if you are coming by air, by car or by train.

Hotels in Burgundy range from the elegant châteaux, decorated with great style and panache to convenient motorway stopovers for travelers en route. Often the châteaux have their own cellars offering wine tastings and maybe even their own vineyards. There are hotels in all price ranges in Dijon and Beaune, plus country auberges away from it all. We offer a choice of over 500 hotels throughout the region.

Tobin Haywood
Rein de Dijon

Rein de Dijon was founded in 1840 and is located in France by the historical city of Dijon. The are the producers of authentic French mustards, including classic smooth Dijon and whole grain Dijon, and a wide range of flavored mustards in attractive packaging for retail. They are a IFS / GFSI certified.


Matthieu Kohlmeyer, CEO
La Tourangelle

The production of gourmet oils is a time-honored tradition in France. Originally, each village had a mill which roasted and extracted the oil from nuts gathered by local farmers. These delicious oils were used in hearty rustic fare and were also found in Paris' finest restaurants.

La Tourangelle is one of just a handful of these remaining mills that keep this tradition alive. Through a partnership between one of the oldest and most respected French artisanal oil mills, Huilerie Croix Verte SAS from Saumur, France, and California Oils Corporation, La Tourangelle has succeeded in recreating the spirit of a traditional French oil mill in Woodland, California.
Hand-crafting a wide range of delicious artisan oils in both California and France, La Tourangelle distributes an exclusive line of premium quality oils in many countries around the world.


Mr. Thomas Decombard-Perronneau 

The Apidis/Perronneau family company specializes in the harvesting, packaging, and marketing of honeys and products made with honey from bees that are circulated around France to get the best flavors of the country. They have been beekeepers since 1890 and are committed to the search for the quality and respect of traditions.
With more than 4,000 hives, Apidis/Perronneau Family are at the forefront of French honey production.
Some of the products made from their monofloral and regionally selected honey are:
• Royal jelly, flower pollen, propolis
• Gingerbreads filled with jam
• Gingerbread
• Confectionery made with honey

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