Just say "no" to the globalisation of cuisine and tastes: Master Vinaigrier Martin Pouret remains true to traditional Orléans recipes when creating their wine vinegars and highest quality mustards.
The traditional recipes handed down over the years and currently being used by Martin Pouret remain virtually unchanged since 1797. As an official Master Vinaigrier Martin Pouret is a producer of vinegars and mustards in the traditional Orléans style and Jean-François Martin, head of the [artisanal vinegar maker since ?] has a passion for local agro-food products and specialisms. As the latest artisanal vinaigrier from Orléans he makes sure all of his products and creations are packed with flavour.
At Martin Pouret we strongly believe in taking our time to get things right. We use only French wines from the Loire Valley, Bordelais or Champagne for our classic Orléans-style vinegars whilst our varietal vinegars are made using varietal wines chosen for their organoleptic properties. Sauvignon varieties give our white vinegars a hint of a woody, citrus taste; merlot varieties provide roundness and a splash of fruity flavours for our red vinegars.
But regardless of whether it's traditional vinegars or varietal vinegars the wines we select are always emptied into the 240 litre oak casks we keep in our cellars. They are stored there for three weeks which is the precise amount of time needed for acetic fermentation to kick in naturally as a result of the indigenous bacteria used. Once the acetic fermentation process is complete our vinegars are aged for one year in oak casks (we weren't joking when we said we like to take our time - vinegars produced industrially are only aged for 48 hours and we think you'll agree the flavour speaks for itself!). This is the time needed to achieve a perfect balance in the flavours in the vinegar: just like a good wine, a good vinegar gets better with age.
During the noughties Martin Pouret decided to tackle a new challenge and begin production of mustards in line with traditional Orléanaise methods. For Jean-François Martin this meant having the right materials which were suited to the product, i.e. mustard seeds harvested in France but more specifically from the Loire Valley. Mustards seeds have progressively disappeared from France, with those being supplied since the start of the noughties effectively being Canadian. This is why, together with Loire Valley farmers, Jean-François Martin decided to resurrect the regional mustard seed supply chain, which, starting in 2017, will provided 100% of the seeds used. Once transported to the moutarderie seeds are traditionally ground using a millstone which is what gives the condiment its creaminess. Afterwards Guérande salt is added, which is a vital ingredient when making mustard the traditional Orléans way.
Building on his association with Loire Valley farmers Jean-François Martin then set off to try to bring back the tastes and textures of pickled foods from the olden days, creating his own range using Orléans vinegar. Pickled fresh immediately after harvest, Martin Pouret cornichons (French-style gherkins) offer unrivalled crunch and texture. Tradition and the quest for authentic flavours are likewise central to the production of pickled capers which come from Sicily, the birthplace of this Mediterranean condiment par excellence.
Looking to the future for Martin Pouret means looking to the past, with a love for traditional agro-food products ingrained in the company. And with his new selection of Orléanaise specialisms Jean-François Martin has connected his gastronomic heritage to the singularly dynamic and inventive world of French cuisine, as recognised by UNESCO. In recent years the biggest names in French gastronomy have taken an interest in condiments, being constantly on the look-out for new associations and, in their quest for supremacy of flavour, going back to artisanal production processes with their focus on agro-foods and fuller taste. As more acidic flavours make a return to French kitchens and the wide range of condiments available becomes a greater source of inspiration Alain Passard, chef at l'Arpège in Paris poetically described mustard as "perfume for your mouth" as it helps him place greater emphasis on vegetables.
Ever faithful to the creation of the highest quality products, Martin Pouret is likewise on a quest for new sensations and has developed new types of mustards mixing sophistication, opposing flavours and gourmet expertise. Mustard with Loire Valley cornichons and poppy seed mustard both combine sweet and crunchy flavours whilst candied mustard, which is worked up like a jam and then cooked in a pot is a complete surprise. Then there's our wasabi, ginger and chili vinegars tickling connoisseurs' taste buds with all new kinds of flavours!