What do you know about Burgundy? You think this region is only famous for its Chablis wine and beef Burgundy? You’d be surprised how much delicious and unique food there is. This region is a gastronomic paradise. Believe me, not many French regions can boast such an impressive list of cheeses, dishes, wines and sweets! Still do not believe it? See for yourself…
Just look at some of the famous culinary delights of Burgundy… And then for a list of some of the region’s wines, which are some of the most famous in the world.
When you think of typical French Burgundian cuisine, you have to think of snails, spicy cheeses and rich red wines…
- Meurette (Meurette) is a black concentrated extract of red wine, grape shoots and vegetables. It cannot be combined with meat or poultry (strong flavors interfere), but only with fish and boiled eggs.
- Eggs en meurette (Oeufs en meurette) is a favorite dish for a hearty Burgundy-style breakfast, using poached eggs (broken in boiling water), for more spice and a bright purple color they can be boiled directly in boiling wine and served in a sauce with herbs.
- Wine peaches (Peches de vigne) – with red very sweet flesh, they make delicious pies in the Côte d’Or (Burgundy department).
- Rooster in Chamberti (Coq au Vin) – a rooster boiled entirely in this dense Burgundian wine, more often, sometimes chambertin is mixed with simpler wines, simply calling the dish Coq au Vin.
- Gaudes (Gaudes), a corn porridge with milk and butter.
- Ham with parsley (Jambon persillé)- obligatory for Easter, but eat it at other times too – sliced ham dipped in jelly with parsley.
- Dijon mustard (Moutarde de Dijon) – mustard is cooked dark, light, with honey, herbs, spices, “old-fashioned”, “new-fashioned”, “oriental”.
- Grape snails (Escargot) – escargot in Burgundy are often preferred to oysters and mussels. They are often served out of their shells in a sauce of garlic and parsley.
- Gougere (Gougere) are small brioche buns made of custard dough with cheese. They are served everywhere as a small appetizer with wine. Sometimes a gougere may look like a large pie, with mushrooms or ham topping the filling.
- Pauchouse (Pauchouse) is the most popular of the fish dishes, of which there are not many in Burgundy. It is a kind of matlot of four kinds of fish cooked in white wine. Traditionally, two kinds of dense fish (pike and perch) and two kinds of fatty fish (eel and tench) are chosen.
- Chicken Bresse (Poulet de Bresse) is a chicken from the non-vino municipality of Bresse, which is located just south of Beaune, was appellation in 1957. It is the only chicken in the world controlled by appellation.
- Fondue bourguignonne (Fondue bourguignonne) – no cheese! Slices of raw charolais (local beef) are dipped in hot oil and eaten with mustard.
- Bœuf bourguignon (Bœuf bourguignon) – the main meat dish. It requires local Charolais beef and red Burgundy wine.
- Foie gras (Foie gras) is found all over France, and Burgundy is no exception.
In the early Middle Ages, the city of Dijon in Burgundy was the center of mustard production. Using vinegar in mustard instead of juice from unripe grapes, Jean Nijon became famous for putting Dijon mustard on the map, and today authentic Dijon mustard is recognized as AOC (apllation d’origine contrôlée). Many traditional Burgundian dishes are made with Dijon mustard, and you will often find the word “dijonnaise” on the menu, which means using mustard and, often, mayonnaise. Excellent with meat, you can enjoy it with roast beef, ham and sausages, and as a great thickener in sauces.
Translated from French as “boiled ham,” jambon persillé is a favorite on the menus of local Burgundian restaurants because it is a simple but delightfully rich traditional dish. A somewhat old-fashioned terrine, the broth to serve the dish is usually made with veal foot and/or veal bones. Using ham, white wine, leeks, celery, carrots, onions and plenty of parsley, the terrine is often served with a gribiche sauce, which resembles mayonnaise and is made with egg yolks and mustard.
A wonderfully rich dish with beef, mushrooms, bacon, red wine sauce and shallots, boeuf bourguignon is one of Burgundy’s most popular dishes. Like many Burgundian dishes, this dish demonstrates the importance of using wine in cooking. And not just any wine, but a good wine that you would be happy to drink. Likewise, using good cuts of beef ensures that this stew will have a full, rich flavor. And it’s best eaten with potatoes or plenty of crusty French bread. Beef dominates Burgundy’s cookbooks because of the famous Charolais cattle, a quality breed of white cows that you find scattered across the landscape.
Coq au vin
Coq au vin using Burgundy red wine is a traditional dish with chicken, wine, lard, garlic and mushrooms. Chicken, which can be found throughout France, is braised with other ingredients, but it is the red wine from the region that gives the chicken its rich flavor. It is a dish that cooks slowly over a long period of time. It is perfect for the fall and winter seasons. This dish is an excellent example of the use of wild mushrooms in Burgundian cuisine.
Enjoy lovely light gougères as an appetizer. Today you can find gougères in many different forms all over France, but it is said that the original came from Burgundy. Gougères are often served chilled at wine tastings and as a delightful appetizer.
- Epoisses is a soft yellow cow’s cheese with a white crust and a pungent aroma (ranking among the top ten most smelly cheeses). It comes from the village of Epoisses and is protected by the 1991 AOC rules.
- Chaours is a soft bovine cheese with a white, slightly fluffy crust and a slightly more delicate flavor. It is aged in a sumentrén brine.
- Brillat-Savarin is similar to Chaours, but denser.
- Delice de Bourgogne is a very delicate and pleasantly fat creamy cheese with a tantalizing aroma, with a lingering soft chickpea. A circle of this cheese weighs about 2 kg.
- Ami du Chambertin from Gervais-Chambertin – its delicate crust is rubbed with marc (local grape distillate) in the production process. Also very smelly.
- Comté is a cheese with a distinct, sweet taste and a nutty flavor, the texture is quite firm and elastic. A distinctive feature of conte cheese is that depending on the time and place of production (right down to the specific cellar), its taste can vary greatly. Thus, each head has its own unique flavor. There are six main flavors (“fruity”, “milky”, “burnt”, “herbal”, “animal” and “spicy”), which, in turn, have more than 90 flavors.
- Trou du Cru is a rich, savory French cheese. It has an orange edible crust on top. Usually the cheese is aged for 4 weeks. During this time, each head separately washed with wine Marc de Bourgogne (Marc de Bourgogne). Thanks to this alcohol the cheese acquires a characteristic straw flavor.
- Mâconnais and Charollais are two goat cheeses. Small, truncated cone-shaped heads of Mâconnais are taken on picnics and served as an aperitif. Charollais “kegs” weighing 300 grams are the largest of goat cheeses. They pair well with rosé and white wines.
Perhaps most of all, Burgundy is famous for its wine production. The wines known as “Bourgogne” or “Vins de Bourgogne” are varied here because of the often humid and windy weather that runs through the Seine and Loire valleys and gives the region a unique terroir (the grapes, soil, climate and location of the vineyard on which the wine is made). Vineyards are ranked throughout the region, with the title of Burgundy awarded to any wine grown in the region, and wines with only the village name are considered more premium.
There are two grape varieties to look out for when exploring Burgundy, Pinot Noir and Chardonnay. Both varieties with complex flavors and interesting aromas, try each of them while exploring the five main growing regions: Chablis, Côte de Beaune, Maconnais, Côte de Nuits and Côte Chalonnaise.
- Chablis: mainly a white wine made from chardonnay around Auxerre.
- Cote d’Or: Burgundy’s best and most expensive wines, with all Grand Cru vineyards except Chablis. Two parts:
– Côte de Nuits – south of Dijon, 24 of the 25 Grand Cru red wines (Chambertin is Napoleon’s favorite, Clos de Vougeot, Romanée-Conti is one of the best in the world).
– Côte de Beaune, around Beaune, red wines (Volnay, Pommard…) and the best white wines (Meursault, Corton-Charlemagne,…)
- Cote Chalonnaise – white and red tart, aromatic wines.
- Maconnais – a large number of light white wines.
- Beaujolais is a fruity red wine made from Gamay grapes.
- Coteaux du Lyonnais – red wines with bright aromas of red berry tones and white wines – very light, simple, open.
- Desserts: The gingerbread with honey and spices is also served in other regions, but the Dijon recipe is considered the most delicate. They are made not from rye, but from wheat flour.
- Anis de Flavigny – candies made of anise grains in sugar syrup from the commune of Flavigny-sur-Ozren. In 1923, Jean Trouba bought a candy factory and came up with the idea of selling them in elegant tin boxes. The Trouba family is still a monopolist in the production of anise candies and complements them with dozens of unusual flavors. For example, violet, mandarin, rose, and jasmine.
- Berry desserts, clafoutis, are popular in Burgundy, thanks to harvests of grapes, cherries and blackcurrants. In pastry shops, look for grape jam, blackcurrant sorbet, cherry tarts and berry-filled cakes.
- Tarts, such as Tarte aux mirabelles (Tarte aux mirabelles), a classic French tart, are popular all over France, including Burgundy.
- Melon with ratafia (Melon au ratafia de Bourgogne) – a classic appetizer (sometimes served as a dessert) of half a melon in which ratafia (grape liqueur) and several slices of cured ham are poured.
- Pears in wine (Poires au vin) is a traditional dessert of the Beaujolais wine region, belonging to the cuisine of Burgundy and Lyon.
- Biscuiterie Bourgogne (Biscuiterie Bourgogne) is a relatively new dessert, but has won the hearts of all local and visiting tourists. Biscuiterie Bourgogne is a producer of cookies and biscuits with different flavors. Biscuiterie de Bourgogne, founded in 2012 by Geoffrey Chopard, is a family business located in Franche-Comté in the Yonne department, near Auxerre.
I will share with you some more pictures of food (and pictures from stores) in Burgundy.
Thanks to my work in gastronomy in Burgundy, I was able to know and collect a list (as well as access to buy them) of the best producers of meat, wine and sweets. Many of the wines are unique, with lines lined up a year in advance, and you won’t find them in stores or even retail at the wineries themselves!
If you would like to order a package with the best local unique products, carefully thought out and assembled by me, email me.