A City Known for Mustard in a Region Known for Wine

16 10 2009

Maille boutique, Dijon

Dijon, located in the Côte d’Or département, is a city full of great food, wine, and shopping opportunities.  Nick and I arrived in town Saturday morning and headed straight for the market, which was packed with local and regional cheeses, charcuterie, wines, and produce.  If the weather had been nicer, we would have picked up some goodies and found a picturesque spot to enjoy a picnic.  Alas, it being October, we got gray skies and intermittent rain.  Nonetheless, we did not go hungry.  After a long lunch in a restaurant near the market, we wandered over to the rue de la Liberté, the city’s main shopping street (in fact, it is what I remember most about my last visit to Dijon, in 2000, particularly the H&M).  This time, though, I was shopping for mustard.  The Maille boutique features dozens of flavors of mustard, from cassis to herbes de Provence to marc de Bourgogne.  I wanted to try them all, but feared for my sinuses.

Stoneware mustard jars

My favorite feature of the shop is the mustard taps, where you can have a stoneware mustard pot filled with your choice of fresh mustard.  Apparently Maille has one other boutique in France, located in Paris – D’oh! – so when I run out, I can go there to get my pot refilled.

Mustard Tap

And then we were off in search of wine…

… which we found at the charming Ô Gré du Vin.  (Or is it Ogre du Vin?  The former roughly translates to “In the Mood for Wine,” while the latter becomes “Wine Ogre.”  While I enjoy silly mistranslations as much as the next language geek, I’m fairly certain the first spelling/translation is the correct one.)

Ô Gré du Vin

Either way, the shop, run by the very friendly Bertrand Joinville, had a lovely selection of French wines, with a focus on Burgundies and organic wines.  We had an informative chat with Bertrand as we tasted a few of his offerings, and we let him convince us to buy two different reds (pinot noir  – nearly all the red wine from Bourgogne is pinot noir) from neighboring parcels (wine classification and nomenclature in Burgundy is arguably the most complex in France) to compare the effects of the terroir.  Hey, I’m all for educating my palate.

Ô Gré du Vin, interior

We also picked up a couple of bottles of white wine.  I love the Burgundian style of Chardonnay – it’s crisp, clean, and food-friendly, in stark contrast to the American perception of Chardonnay as buttery and almost sweet.

Now, seeing as it’s Friday night, I think I’ll go cook something mustardy, crack open a bottle of Burgundy, and pretend I’m a Dijonnaise.

Originally published on Croque-Camille.




6 responses

18 10 2009

Mustard Taps! Doesn’t get any better than that! 🙂 We used to have 6-7 kinds of mustard in the house at any given time. In deference to the recession, among other cut-backs, we only keep two kinds;)

I do enjoy a nice French Chardonnay, unencumbered by buttery oakiness–I’m a wee bit jealous.

19 10 2009

pastrychef – Wow, I think we have about 3 kinds of mustard in our kitchen right now. (They don’t count if they haven’t been opened, right?) Do you ever make your own? It’s something I’ve been meaning to try.

20 10 2009

I’m a bit of a mustard addict, the Maille shop looks like heaven to me! I would love to try the cassis mustard, I can’t quite imagine how that would taste.

20 10 2009

Sam – Me, too! It was a beautiful, vibrant magenta… I should have just bought a jar. 🙂

21 10 2009

Mustard taps? Wow… you have just broadened my horizons… I know where I’ll be headed as soon as I get back to Paris…

21 10 2009

emiglia – Or Dijon… 😉

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