A Taste of Terroir
A Taste of Terroir
On the Charlevoix flavor trail in Quebec, Canada, all roads lead to Fairmont Le Manoir Richelieu.
By: Mélanie Roy
At the base of the Mont Grand-Fonds ski hill, Danielle Ricard and her partner grow beautiful bunches of seashell-like oyster mushrooms in a controlled environment meant to mimic the humidity of a forest floor. Sample the fruits of their labor by picking up a jar of their Italian-marinated mushrooms, but be sure to save some for home – they get better with age.
Originally from Basque Country, Isabelle Mihura moved to Saint-Urbain and began raising mulard ducks, a breed prized for the quality of its liver and favored for foie gras. Her farming philosophy is guided by animal welfare (the ducks are free range and every effort is made to reduce stress during the last two weeks of feeding) and by the strict artisanal production methods used in Southwest France. Stop in at the tasting room for an indulgent bite, including rillettes and foie gras au torchon.
Take a guided tour of this family-owned working dairy and interpretation center founded in 1948 and modernized according to sustainable farming practices. Discover the secrets of their homemade cheeses, including the 1608, a creamy tribute to the year Quebec was founded. It is made using milk from the Canadienne cow, a dairy breed unique to Canada.
Turning tomatoes into wine? Pascal Miche has managed to do it – with tasty results. From a sunny plot of land in Baie-Saint-Paul, he grows heritage tomatoes brimming with complex flavors, which he then translates into some of the most interesting aperitif wines in the world using a secret recipe inherited from his great-grandfather. The most recent addition to his Omerto line: a subtle, smoky, medium-dry elixir aged nine months in acacia barrels.
Go from farm to table at Fairmont Le Manoir Richelieu, where chef Patrick Turcot proudly showcases ingredients gathered from along the flavor trail. At least 75 percent of the menu is made up of products found within 30 miles of the hotel, including vegetables from Les Jardins du Centre, guinea fowl from Les Volières de Baie-Saint-Paul and beer from La MicroBrasserie Charlevoix (to name a few).