The word 'Terroir' has origins in the French language, most commonly a recognised term throughout the wine industry, to encompass environmental factors and contextual characteristics that go into giving wine individuality. This gave birth to the 'Appellation' or AOC system that presumes the land from where the grapes are grown imparts a unique and specific quality to the end product. 'Terroir' and the appellation system extends to many natural products including cheese, coffee, chocolate and so on... Terroir gives a 'Sense of Place' providing a distinction between the same product produced elsewhere or with different factors. The symbiotic relations within an ecosystem of a certain 'place' come together in harmony allowing a product to express its self.
I see the concept of Terroir in every day life as the interaction between all of us and our environment to create individuality. This is surely the path to uniqueness and creative expression. Interactions within the community and environment shape regional cultural traits giving rise to originality. Terroir is expressed in products and services creating value and richness!
Terroir is most noticeable in what we eat and drink, and where we go to do this, even if just at home. Terroir encompasses human skills and traditions, both learnt and passed down through the generations, giving a responsible alliance with our environment enriching what we create with our own uniqueness. The world of wine has long celebrated this, giving us the well know example of Champagne, and extends to many other drinks such as Cider, Whiskey, Coffee and Tea. The culinary world is also full of examples where terroir has been respected. The world of cheese is perhaps the most noted, together with chocolate, flour and many other artisan products.
Culinary cultures the world over showcase and celebrate their finest by embracing and championing 'terroir'. Whether a person or a product, the sense of place is paramount in creating something special that stands out from the crowd because of its uniqueness and quality . Italy has 'nostra', meaning ours or our products. Spain refers to products deal tierra, while Norway uses indigenous or native. In fact Norwegians put far more emphasis on the human influences, and quite rightly so! Craft knowledge, recipes passed down through the generations and cultural influences have such a huge part to play alongside the biological and environmental factors.
The importance of terroir gave rise to the Slow Food Movement and perhaps more recently the desire to create and seek out Artisan products. The draw towards Sourdough Baking has been prevalent recently and is perhaps the most perfect example of what terroir can give to us.
Creating with terroir imparts a societal importance, almost a sense of pride for the area. If handled well and respected, terroir creates a consumer confidence and implies a given level of quality, ultimately giving a 'Known For' aspect to a product, business or person. This is at the heart of my business ethos, a chance to create a terroir of your own. A true expression of creativity and drive, fuelled by passion! Leave a footprint on the culinary map for all to see, embrace Terroir!
Welcome to Terroir Culinary Consultancy.