In search of the black diamond
Address : Jean-Luc Bénard
Town/Suburb/City : 04150 Redortiers
State/County/Province : Alpes de Haute Provence
Country : France
Phone : 04 92 73 28 96
Fax : 04 92 73 38 92
A few miles from Banon, in a wooded vale supplied in water by permanent springs, you'll discover the place where Jean-Luc Bénard lives and works. The circuit begins around his house, filled with history, built near a stream that talks of its past function. A tool in his hand and a few biscuits for the dog in his pocket, Jean-Luc takes the way that leads to the mysterious « black diamond ». What are the secrets of its growth in these grounds ? Why has it chosen to associate with these oaks ? So many questions to discover and understand this black fungus that wonderfully flavours the dishes. From the end of the valley, catch a glimpse of the ruined village of Redortiers, and fancy the life of those who used to live there, with more rocks than soil under their feet... .
Then, after following an ancient stream bed, you're back to the greenhouses. It is there that the alchemy of the symbiosis between tree and fungus takes place. Jean-Luc explains the inoculation of the saplings, the diverse tree species he uses, and how man has learned how to bend nature to his purposes. After so many explanations, the visit ends with a tasting... of truffle of course.
Jean-Luc is a member of the association of truffle producers of Alpes-de-Haute-Provence. He offers direct sale of :
• mycorrhizae-inoculated saplings
You can also meet him at :
• the truffle festival
• Bed and breakfast (room for 2/3 people), table d'hôte. Theme week-ends are offered during the truffle season.