Walnuts of Périgord -
Home to lively markets and fine cuisine, the Dordogne Valley is synonymous with some of the most acclaimed foods in France. Whether it be bought from a stall, cooked at home or served in a restaurant or bistro, the region's fabulously flavoursome goodies are enough to tickle any visitor's tastebuds! So get ready to experience some real French living !
The sun-drenched medieval villages, towns and castles of the Dordogne Valley offer a ton of choices to keep any food lover content. From the vineyards of Bergerac and cheese stalls of Bretenoux to the truffle farms of Martel and the saffron festival of Carjac, mealtimes aren't to be messed with in the Dordogne.
Cheese...and wine to go with it
A popular purchase at any local market or restaurant is of course Rocamadour cheese. This small creamy piece of heaven made from goat's milk bears the label 'Appellation d'Origine Contrôlée' which guarantees the produce was made in the region with the use of traditional methods and ingredients.
Because cheese is so central to the Dordogne diet, it's no surprise there's an abundance of local wines to go with them. Despite its close proximity to Bordeaux, the Dordogne produces a delicious variety of lesser-known local wines like Coteaux de Glanes that are representative of the warm summers and how the grapes ripen.
With a reputation for its love of grapes, many of the wines go hand-in-hand with traditional gourmet produce like magret de canard and foie gras (amazing with a local sweet wine called Vin de Branceilles)
Seasonal treats and organic delicacies
Although the selection of organic fruit and veg vary according to season, these regional treasures are in constant supply and are pretty darn tasty.
Quercy lamb is another of the Dordogne Valley's ambassadors. Left to roam on the Causse's limestone plateaux, these free-range lambs graze on thyme and other herbs giving the meat a beautiful fragrant flavour.
Visitors with a sweet tooth can enjoy the region's delicate, candy-sweet strawberries, melon and plums where as visitors with a fine palate can savour the Dordogne's highly sought-after truffles or rather 'Black Diamonds'.
Other palate-teasers like walnuts continue to be celebrated for their use in vin de noix (a rich liqueur made from unripe green nuts) and walnut oil.
Most of the Dordogne Valley's village squares are transformed into a market place at least once a week, welcoming local farmers to set up shop with their fresh produce. Festivals and one-off markets are organized all year round to celebrate a particular local speciality such as 'Fête de la Truffe' in Sarlat and Cuzance or 'Fête de la Fraise' in Beaulieu-sur-Dordogne.
Vineyards & Wine tasting
Picture this: A slice of foie gras on a chunk of crusty walnut bread accompanied with a glass of sweet white wine... Eating foie gras is a serious business in the Dordogne Valley! Prepare yourself for some uncontrollable mouth-watering
Known as the jewel of the kitchen, the truffle has been a highly sought-after ingredient for centuries-on-end. And it just so happens that the Dordogne Valley is France's truffle-hunting capital so finding somewhere to taste this little beaut' should never be a problem!
To taste a Bleu des Causses or a Rocamadour is to travel to the very heart of the Dordogne Valley's landscapes and savoir-faire that transform unpasturised milk into some of the finest 'fromages' in France. Cheese lovers, this one's for you!