Beillevaire is a family company that has 250 employees and has two sides to its business. It produces its own products (butter, yoghurt, fromage blanc, milk-based desserts, cheeses) and is also a fromager affineur (it buys in young cheeses from all over France and other countries and then matures them in its own cellars). We were both surprised and delighted to see how ‘artisanal’ they have managed to keep production during a recent visit to the production site in Machecoul near Nantes. Butter is made using wooden moulds and is hand wrapped, compotes are dropped into glass yoghurt pots before being topped up and fromage blanc is drained in large muslins before being packed and weighed by hand. A delight to see – we came away with much more respect for the company (from whom we buy all our cheese).
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Wine tasting in the Loire is unique and tasting rooms range from very rustic to chic and modern.5 Jan, 2014
Salt from Guerande
Gros Sel is the coarsest salt which is gathered from the bottom of the shallow clay lined pools of salt water while the Fleur de Sel is the highest quality and is carefully skimmed from the surface. This is considered a premium product and is used to sprinkle on food at the table.11 Oct, 2013
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The wine tasting day was one of the highlights of our entire trip … you really went out of your way to make our stay perfect.
It was like hanging out with two friends who just happened to know a lot about wine.