Delicious and authentic: all about Loire Valley specialties

Tarte tatin, asparagus from Sologne, black truffles from Berry, wine from Touraine, and Mara des Bois strawberries… Did you know that all these mouthwatering products are Loire Valley specialities? Not only is it a veritable natural paradise, the region is also a hotspot for French gastronomy! Here you will find plenty to sate your gourmet appetite, including market stands, Michelin-starred restaurants and local producers, passionate about their work. Treat yourself! 

Loire Valley specialties: local products to take home

The Loire Valley, also known as “The Garden of France”, is home to fine agricultural land. Delicious fruit and vegetables are grown in orchards and market gardens, including asparagus, apples and strawberries. And the meat, Loire fish and cheese produced here are just as delectable! 

Once you’ve arrived in the region, why not head to one of the many producers with the “Bienvenue à la Ferme” or “Accueil Paysan” label, to get your supplies straight from the source… We love shopping local!  The © du Centre regional food label brings together over 2,000 quality local products, grown and/or made with respect for the environment, such as organic fruit and vegetables, PDO goat’s cheese, biscuits, terrine made from Loire fish and honey from Gâtinais. 

Bouteilles, boîtes ou pots de produits locaux C du Centre dans une vitrine

You can recognise © du Centre products thanks to the logo on their packaging. They’re available for purchase directly from the producers or at the markets where they are sold. Sweet and savoury products, dairy, fruit and vegetables, drinks, and more… All you have to do is pick them up and take them home to make delicious dishes!  

And now, thanks to the new network of brand ambassadors, these delicious products are also available in a selection of local stores. Restaurant owners can also become ambassadors, by committing to using local products cooked on-site as a priority and offering a drinks menu with at least three © du Centre products. So look for the label – it’s a great way to discover a whole range of products prepared with respect for local know-how and the environment. 

Local markets: an abundance of the Loire Valley’s best specialities 

If there’s one place where you can take the gastronomic pulse of a region, it’s the market! The Loire Valley lives by the rhythm of its buzzing daily markets, and particularly its food markets, which are home to local producers and specialities. Here is a selection of the best spots where you’re sure to find what you’re looking for! 

The Amboise market

On Fridays and Sundays, the Amboise market on the banks of the Loire welcomes epicureans throughout the year. There, you can stroll between the stalls and chat with local producers. This market has seduced not only residents of the commune, but also all of France, as it was elected the favourite market of French people in 2015! 

JC Coutand – ADT Touraine
Couples qui passent devant les stands du marché d'Amboise en nocturne

The Loches market

Every Wednesday and Saturday, over 100 stallholders set up in the centre of the town of Loches for the classic market. There, you can find PDO goat’s cheese, rillons, artisanal sweets, and other Loire Valley specialities.  

The Blois city-centre market

Every Saturday morning, on Place Louis XII in the heart of the city, residents and visitors flock to around a hundred stands, including many local fruit and vegetable producers. Don’t miss it! 

M. Perreau – CRT Centre-Val de Loire
Cagettes de cèpes sur un marché

The place du Martroi market in Orleans 

The Place du Martroi night market is held every Friday from 4 pm to 9.30 pm. There, you will find countless stands of local producers, welcoming you at the foot of the famous Joan of Arc statue. 

The Tours covered market 

Each day, hundreds of foodies flock to the aisles of the covered market. Here, around 38 producers offer the finest meats, pastries and specialty breads. 

The “maîtres restaurateurs” revisit Loire Valley specialities

D. Darrault – CRT Centre-Val de Loire
Dans les cuisines de L'Auberge du cheval blanc, Maitre Restaurateur, préparation d'une assiette avec des champignons et une sauce

In this area, where the art of living is king, authentic products are showcased by French gastronomy. Whether it’s the classic Tarte Tatin, Loire wines, goat’s cheeses, Martin Pouret vinegar or Mazet praline, Loire Valley specialities will make every food-lover’s mouth water. It’s no coincidence that this is where François Rabelais, who was born near Chinon, invented the character of Pantagruel, with his insatiable appetite! 

In this region, over 170 “Maîtres Restaurateurs” work with local and seasonal products every day, producing delicious dishes for residents and tourists. Iconic products, culinary specialities, contemporary creations, and more – there are plenty of delicious culinary surprises in store for you, thanks to the know-how of these Chefs! In their own way, they each reinvent the gastronomy of a region that has celebrated the French art of living for centuries. You’re guaranteed a veritable journey in taste! 

If you go for lunch or dinner at one of these restaurants, you will enjoy “home-made” cuisine. Each one showcases local and seasonal products, with respect for the rhythm of nature. 

JC Coutand – ADT Touraine
Couple à table au restaurant avec le chef de L'Auberge de l'ile qui dépose une assiette
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Auberge de la Madeleine – Le Jardin du Loir

Le Bistrot du Cuisinier

Auberge de la Caillère

Domaine des Hauts de Loire

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Food and wine pairings: more than a speciality in the Loire Valley, a tradition! 

Assiette et verres de vin, table de restaurant
JC Coutand – ADT Touraine

Chenin, Gamay, Sauvignon, Cabernet Franc or Pinot Noir: many iconic French wines are grown in the terroir of the Loire Valley. Winegrowing estates express their terroir with talent, through a responsible approach that’s committed to respecting the environment.

Are you looking for the perfect food pairing to go with your Loire wine? Look no further! Varieties from the Loire pair perfectly with regional specialities, particularly Tarte Tatin (the famous upside-down apple tart), Pithiviers (puff pastry cake with almond paste, similar in taste to a King’s Cake), and rillette and rillons from Tours, a classic for pre-dinner snacks in the Loire Valley! Combine these ingredients with condiments and spices, like mustard and vinegar from Orléans, or saffron from Gâtinais or Touraine. 

And there’s still plenty more for you to discover on the menu in the Loire Valley! The region is also known for its goat’s cheeses, particularly Sainte-Maure-de-Touraine, a log of soft cheese with a piece of straw through the middle, and Selles-sur-Cher. These are just two of the five PDO goat’s cheeses that come from Centre-Val de Loire. Don’t forget the Loire Valley’s fruit and vegetables: asparagus from Sologne, green lentils from Berry, black truffles from Touraine or Berry, Mara des Bois strawberries, and more… And while everyone knows that Loire Valley wines go very well with local specialities, there are also fantastic spirits, liqueurs and artisanal beers to be discovered. 

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