Do you love artisan French food, but can’t find a retailer near you that stocks the produce that you’re craving? Do you want to explore and experience more of the finest culinary delights that France has to offer? La Gourmet Box brings the very best of independent French food and drink straight to your doorstep. Their dedicated team travels all over France to source the most exquisite luxury products from artisan producers, and everything is carefully chosen based on the highest standards of quality, tradition and authenticity.
I’ve always enjoyed French food and drink, particularly their cheeses, bread, sweet baked treats and of course their wines, so La Gourmet Box instantly appealed to me. Their dedication and passion, as well as their high standards, ensures that every box that you receive from them will take you on a culinary journey to a specific region of France. I think this is a great idea to help expand your horizons and experience something new and different every month.
La Gourmet Box were kind enough to send me their Nièvre-Burgundy Gourmet Box to try out, which is full of delightful products from the famous Nièvre region of Burgundy. The large sturdy box arrived via courier and came beautifully presented, wrapped in tissue paper with lots of cushioning.
Inside were the following eight products:- “Les Charmes” AOC Côteaux du Giennois 2015, White Wine (75 cl)
Burgundy is home to some of the finest and oldest wineries in the world, and La Gourmet Box have included an exceptional bottle of white wine from the Domaine Catherine et Michel Langlois winery. This Sauvignon Blanc is full bodied with fruity notes of Apples, Peaches, and Grapefruits, combined with a subtle floral aroma. Fresh and dry, it makes a great accompaniment to a starter and is really enjoyable to drink on its own during a relaxing evening.Boeuf Bourguignon by La Maison du Charolais (500g)
Boeuf Bourguignon is a popular traditional Burgundy meal consisting of beef stew in a rich wine sauce with potatoes, onions, and carrots. This particular meal by La Maison du Charolais features the region’s famous beef stewed in Burgundy Red Wine, and only took two minutes to be heated up. Being a vegetarian, I gave this to my sister to try out as she loves beef, and she really enjoyed it. She said that “the beef was fully flavoured and tender, and the sauce was rich and meaty with a good balance of vegetables included. It was a lovely warming, comforting, hearty meal to enjoy on a cold night.”Fowl Liver Mousse with Burgundy Snails by Bernard Loiseau (80g)
As well as its beef and wines, Burgundy is famous for its escargots (snails) and my sister was more than happy to try these out for me as she always has snails whenever she visits France. This is a savoury mousse which combines fowl’s liver with snails and can be served on mini toasts or with a salad for a main meal. My sister said it was “very rich and creamy, with the strong, distinctive flavour of snails coming through the most”. Savoury Puff Pastry with Goat’s Cheese by Les Craquants du Val de Loire (100g)
My favourite product in this box, other than the wine, were these amazing pieces of puff pastry with goat’s cheese. They’re hand made in Pouilly-sur-Loire in Burgundy at a small, traditional bakery using only the finest ingredients. The savoury pastry had a moreish buttery, melt-in-your-mouth consistency, and that tang of goat’s cheese perfectly complimented it. I shall have to make a special trip to Burgundy just to purchase more of these! Les Craquants du Val de Loire by Christian Leise (100g)
These ‘Crackers of the Loire Valley’ are based on a traditional old recipe and have been made by Christian Leise at his bakery since 1998. They won the ‘Best Biscuit in France’ award in 2002 International Sugar Fair and have been popular ever since. These almond and hazelnut biscuits have a satisfying crunch, aren’t overly sweet (just right), and are the perfect accompaniment to a cup of coffee. Artisanal Blackcurrant Jam by Mathien Bouchard (250g)
Morvan in Burgundy is home to many artisan jam makers who still use traditional methods involving hand picked fruits which are stewed in copper pots to get the very best flavour. This particular jam won a Gold Medal at the 2015 General Agricultural Competition in Paris, and it really is one of the most delicious jams that I’ve ever tasted. The blackcurrants taste so vibrant with just the right amount of tartness balancing out the sugar. I made pancakes earlier and everyone in my house was spooning on this amazing jam!Blackcurrant Flavoured Cream Cakes by Les Ruchers du Morvan (160g)
Hidden within the Morvan Nature Park, lies Les Ruchers du Morvan who have been successful in bringing back the traditional cream cakes that Burgundy is famed for. These aren’t cream cakes like you’d expect to have in the UK as they’re much more like thin, hard, sugar biscuits instead. They’re an interesting sweet treat as we don’t have anything like them in England, and these particular ones are made withcrème fraîche and flavoured with real Blackcurrants for a fruity twist. Lovely with tea or coffee.
There was also a jar of Artisanal Wholegrain Mustard by Huilerie Brossard (200g) included which I haven’t photographed as it experienced a little spillage in transit which covered the paper label (all of the other products arrived in perfect condition, I think the mustard was in the corner of the box that may have experienced some extra movement during transit). This mustard was excellent – I buy handmade, artisanal mustards all the time because the ones from the supermarket just don’t cut it for me anymore, and this one was really good. Sharp, tangy and full of flavour.
I thoroughly enjoyed my culinary journey through Burgundy and I can imagine a box like this making a great gift for anyone who enjoys fine French food and drink.