Autumn is the time of the year when The French Ardennes takes particular stock of its local larder.
The French Ardennes Tourist Board manages a brand promoting its local produce through a ‘collective label’ which will celebrate its 30th anniversary in 2017. This now includes some 60 members and 200 products for food lovers, and features everything from fine food (salt meats, black and white puddings, poultry, macaroons, chocolates), through to services or other food-related tourism products.
Aimed at giving the public added confidence in purchasing local food and drink from The French Ardennes, full details of the Ardennes de France brand – promoting everything from beers to ewe’s milk cheese, red turkeys to saffron – can be found at www.ardennes-de-france.com.
A series of special events to promote the 30th anniversary are already being planned for 2017. In the meantime, the next Ardennes de France showcase will take place between October 29th to November 27th with a major exhibition of local products in the French Ardennes Tourist Board building in the Place Ducale, in the regional capital of Charleville-Mézières.
Similar exhibitions will take place at the same time within the Woinic shop at the A34 motorway services “Aire des Ardennes” (Sortie 14) near Faissault; and at the Val d’Ardenne Tourist Office in Vireux-Wallerand.
There’s nothing quite like visiting a French market, of course. And the national accreditation for local producers’ markets, which The French Ardennes’ Chamber of Agriculture obtained in 2013, confirmed what everybody in the region already knew: that The French Ardennes has a very large number of farms, producing products of high quality.
These can be found at seven local markets, in Launois-sur-Vence, Avaux, La Cassine, Mouzon, Renwez, Charleville-Mézières and Givet.
There are promoted via leaflets, and online, with the full programme of markets throughout the region highlighted at http://www.parc-naturel-ardennes.fr/uploads/medias/Programme_MPP_2014.pdf
What all of this means, of course, is that the restaurants of The French Ardennes also have a firmly established reputation for the use and promotion of local produce.
The Cercle des Restaurateurs Ardennais (Circle of French Ardennes Restaurateurs), for example, has laid out a gourmet trail from Rethel to the north of the Ardennes. Thirteen establishments belonging to the association – where the expertise of the chef and the quality of the service contribute to a fine dining experience – are now featured at www.restaurateursdardennes.fr, and in a special brochure (http://bit.ly/1K1OHeo).
Further details about The French Ardennes, meanwhile, are featured in the new, 2016 edition of the Discovery Guide to The French Ardennes which can be ordered by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org, or by telephoning +33 324 56 06 08.
And for further information, visit http://gb.ardennes.com.