Hello Food and Farm Fans!!!
Please enjoy the following photos from my 5 day bike trek along the majestic Loire River, from Orleans to Tours. Although the weather was cool and wet, my encounter with the beautiful farms and food felt warming. Here are a few food delights I saw: asparagus, sunflowers, several varieties of wheat, oats, lettuce, cucumbers and tomatoes (in greenhouses), mustard (seeds for harvest), potatoes, fava beans, corn, cherries, strawberries, apricot, peach, goat cheese and of course, hectares and hectares of grapes. I stopped at a Crocs du Merle, a winery producing on 10 hectares in Muides-sur Loire and purchased an award winning Cheverny ... a lovely white that embellished the local goat cheese, bread and veggies I had for dinner (photo). Bryno Deschamps, (pictured with wife), has 1 hectare of greenhouse grown tomatoes, cucumbers, onions, lettuce and eggplant. He sales from his garage along with other local products in Muides-sur Loire. One afternoon I harvested strawberries at Ferme du Petit Villesablon in Chailles. What a complement with the bottle of Esprit, a dry red I picked up at Domaine des Pirrettes. Check out the photo with goat cheeses so lovely presented in a shop in Amboise. The fromage fermier from Sainte Maure de Touraine was my selection and it was heavenly. Valerie Lenaire, (photo at table) and husband Rodger, who manage the municipal campground in Vouvray, take great care in preparing their food. She remarked that the French do not philosophize about food, they are simply passionate about it and make it priority. They buy at a local market and stick to seasonal and local when possible. Valerie says the produce imported does not have the taste that her husband-chef desires in his dishes. Gardens along the Loire River are common, and remind me sf the dachas in Russia.