France is a land of milk and honey for food lovers. In every region, in every department, there are culinary specialties to discover and make the acquaintance of passionate producers. The awareness of food is particularly pronounced in France. Regionally protected specialties abound. But behind many of the products now bearing an AOP label lies a long road that producers have had to travel to protect their product from the abuse of a good name. Long before AOP and the older French designation of origin, AOC, Appellation d’origine controlée, the Roquefort region managed to protect its famous blue cheese. It was a real stroke of marketing genius when the Parliament of Toulouse decided on August 31, 1666, that only cheese originating from Roquefort could call itself Roquefort. In contrast, Dijon mustard lost its name over 100 years ago. Today Dijon mustard is produced all over the world, but it can still be called after the city in Burgundy. Also the Paludiers in the Guérande did not pay attention and did not have their Fleur de Sel protected. So today fine sea salt flowers are scooped around the globe and were allowed to call themselves Fleur de Sel. One could certainly write a thick book about the many dramas that have taken place around the Appelation d’Origine Protégée (AOP) label, which is now awarded by the European Union. Champagne, truffles, cheese, cassoulet, olive oil and even white beans, all good foods are surrounded by exciting stories that look far into history and also tell you a lot about the lives of people in past centuries. Why, for example, was absinthe so wicked? If one looks into the history it becomes clear, it was a defense strategy of the winegrowers. Protectionism with a hard line. So if the world is full of culinary stories, often going way back in time, France is a bit like an epi-center of food stories. Here come some of them:

  • Avignon, the popes and a lot of theater

    Avignon, the popes and a lot of theater

    A visit to the Palais des Papes is worthwhile. The Unesco World Heritage Site offers a vivid look at the time as a papal residence, also thanks to modern museum technology

  • France and the desire for beer

    France and the desire for beer

    The Auvergne – Rhône – Alpes region is home to a particularly large number of breweries. Why France is discovering a love of beer, tells a brewer from the Drôme Valley

  • Mediterranean oysters

    Mediterranean oysters

    Oysters are a popular appetizer in France. They are hardly filling, low in fat and carbohydrates, but contain many vitamins and minerals.

  • Louis Vuitton scores with Yayoi Kusama

    Louis Vuitton scores with Yayoi Kusama

    On an advertising stretch of four infinite pages and the slogan “Creating Infinity”, luxury brand Louis Vuitton launches its collaboration with Japanese artist Yayoi Kusama.

  • Cooking with Lavender

    Cooking with Lavender

    In the kitchen, lavender is also used in the form of lavender salt or lavender sugar. As a tip for use: lavender has an aromatic proximity to rosemary

  • A marathon for connoisseurs

    A marathon for connoisseurs

    The run through the vineyards of the Médoc is called the longest marathon in the world. Georg Berg took part and is thrilled by the atmosphere

  • Lavender flower in Drôme Provençale

    Lavender flower in Drôme Provençale

    The attraction of flowering lavender fields is as great as the famous Route Nationale 7 is long. What types of lavender are there and how to cook with them?

  • Mourèze – beautiful and spectacular

    Mourèze – beautiful and spectacular

    In a remarkable landscape of France, the starting point for walks is the village of Mourèze, where you can discover expressive works of art

  • Footpath to the Moulins-de-la-Foux

    Footpath to the Moulins-de-la-Foux

    On a hike through the gorge of Navacelles to an ancient mill, you casually learn how rural life was a thousand years ago

  • Frigoulette chocolate from São Tomé

    Frigoulette chocolate from São Tomé

    Bernhard Xueref discovered his passion for cocoa from São Tomé in 2010. It turned him into a chocolatier and ambassador for sustainability and Fairtrade.

  • Palace of the Popes in Avignon

    Palace of the Popes in Avignon

    The Gothic Papal Palace of the southern French city of Avignon conveys its historical significance. Exhibitions and events bring culture to life.

  • Montpellier celebrates

    Montpellier celebrates

    Montpellier wins the French Rugby Championship. The final against Castres was broadcast from Paris for public viewing on the Place de la Comédie.

  • Cassoulet. Stew with history

    Cassoulet. Stew with history

    This hearty specialty from the south of France was a poor man’s food. Ingredients: White beans, duck, sausage, bacon. Preparation classic in the cassole.

  • Olive oil from Provence

    Olive oil from Provence

    The harvest season for olives in the Var region begins in November. This is where tradition meets modernity. The differences could hardly be greater.

  • Menu for lunch break

    Menu for lunch break

    A perfect stop in France for anyone on their way south. Café de la Page serves very good food with fresh and local products

  • Dijon mustard in dilemma

    Dijon mustard in dilemma

    A tragic story from the culinary world describes how Dijon mustard lost its home: Edmond Fallot is France’s last family-owned mustard manufacturer.

  • Beurre Bordier from Saint Malo

    Beurre Bordier from Saint Malo

    In 1984, Jean Yves Bordier opened a butter shop in the Rue de l’Orme. He wants to make butter again as his grandfather did, with time, wooden tools and traditional techniques.

  • Hiking in the Vosges

    Hiking in the Vosges

    The Vosges are a varied low mountain range. Nevertheless, you do not have to do without good wine, hearty cuisine and picturesque towns.

  • Truffle – Favorite of gastronomy

    Truffle – Favorite of gastronomy

    In France, they call it the black diamond of gastronomy. Truffles are among the most expensive edible mushrooms in the world. Before Christmas, the price per kilo rises to 1,000 euros or more.

  • In Alsace on foot from hotel to hotel

    In Alsace on foot from hotel to hotel

    The concept of Horizons d’Alsace sounds like it was created during the Covid pandemic to cater to the wanderlust and love of nature

  • Oysters always go

    Oysters always go

    Oysters are invigorating and energizing, like the primordial sea from which all life originated. It is recommended to chew them for a long time instead of swallowing them with fright.

  • Absinthe, legendary cult drink

    Absinthe, legendary cult drink

    Absinthe, this name carries the taste of the forbidden. A journey along the route of absinthe in France and Switzerland.

  • Winter truffle with chefs of Provence

    Winter truffle with chefs of Provence

    Winter truffles are available in Provence from December. Then the upscale gastronomy in the Var department always has one or more truffle dishes on the menu

  • Truffle: Great delicacy – Big business

    Truffle: Great delicacy – Big business

    Visiting a global player in the international truffle market. In the small provincial town of Draguignan, truffle products are produced for gastronomy.

  • Olive growing at Château Léoube

    Olive growing at Château Léoube

    Provence is one of the most beautiful and oldest cultural landscapes. For more than 2,000 years, people have been growing wine and olives on the Côte d’Azur

  • The truffle and its host, the oak tree

    The truffle and its host, the oak tree

    In the Var department in Provence, oak trees are used for truffle cultivation. Only after 10 years the first truffles can be harvested.

  • The Aups truffle syndicate

    The Aups truffle syndicate

    Every year at the beginning of December, the truffle growers of the French department of Var line up in the marketplace of Aups for the opening of the truffle season. Who is allowed to sell here, to whom and at what price has been regulated by the syndicate for over 50 years.

  • Fly, dog or pig? In search of truffles

    Fly, dog or pig? In search of truffles

    In the Var region of Provence, most truffle growers own private land where they plant oak trees. The precious black truffle is mostly tracked down with dogs.

  • A trip to Saint Chamond

    A trip to Saint Chamond

    The Partnership Association Grevenbroich offers a trip to Saint Chamond at the end of May 2022. A preview and travel info.

  • Burgundy and its truffle specialty

    Burgundy and its truffle specialty

    Truffles take six to eight months to reach maturity. The degree of ripeness is not indicated by the size, but by the smell they emit

  • Absinthe – forbidden and rediscovered

    Absinthe – forbidden and rediscovered

    A rewarding look at the turbulent history of this drink, which translated into German simply means wormwood. Absinthe is the taste of the forbidden

  • Flamenco in Les-Saintes-Maries-de-la-Mer

    Flamenco in Les-Saintes-Maries-de-la-Mer

    Every year in May it gets crowded in Saintes-Maries-de-la-Mer. Roma families make a pilgrimage to Black Sara. Flamenco of the Camargue Gitanos resounds in the narrow streets

  • Brittany Ferries in the Irish Sea

    Brittany Ferries in the Irish Sea

    Every trip through Europe sets something against the isolation caused by the Brexit. A ferry founded by Breton farmers carries mainly tourists

  • Brittany Ferries and the worlds of the Celts

    Brittany Ferries and the worlds of the Celts

    Brittany Ferries has been transporting agricultural products from Brittany to the British Isles since 1973 and is now particularly used by travelers

  • The most famous mustard in the world

    The most famous mustard in the world

    A legal dispute ended the protection of the origin of Dijon mustard in 1937. The designation is no longer linked to the place in Burgundy, but only to the recipe

  • Breton delight with Loïc Le Bail

    Breton delight with Loïc Le Bail

    Brittany & Spa in Roscoff. The hotel focuses on local freshness and combines tradition and modernity. If the star chef works alone, there is simply lobster

  • La Ferme du Vent in Brittany

    La Ferme du Vent in Brittany

    Beautiful cottages in a former farmstead give city dwellers new energy away from meetings, business meals and mobile permanent availability

  • Hugo Roellinger’s cuisine of the corsairs

    Hugo Roellinger’s cuisine of the corsairs

    Hugo Roellinger raves about scallops and has his own philosophy on wild oysters. For him, an oyster is the transformation of stone into life

  • Guerande salt

    Guerande salt

    The profession of paludier has a long tradition in Guérande. The sea salt was seasoning, vital mineral and valuable preservative.



Der Tatort: Schwarzbrennerei, Transhelvetica #60.20, Aug. Sep. 2020, S. 92.


Deutsch-Französischer Dialog ( Großes Kino im Weinbaugebiet. Ein Erlebnisbericht über die Teilnahme am Medoc Marathon von Georg Berg

Deutsch-Französischer Dialog ( Aus eigener Produktion – Französische Biere


Die in Frankreich entstandenen Fotos von Georg Berg können für alle Nutzungsarten bei der internationalen Bildagentur Alamy lizensiert werden.

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