Exploring Distilleries de Provence: A Journey through Craftsmanship and Flavours
During my trip back home, I had the pleasure of visiting Distilleries de Provence in Forcalquier. This charming distillery, owned by Alain Robert and his son Jean-Baptiste, captivated me from the start.
At the Forcalquier market, I had the joy of tasting their incredible Henri Bardouin Pastis.
In the realm of pastis, one exceptional brand stands out for its unmatched elegance and flavour richness. Henri Bardouin Pastis, awarded the prestigious Gold Medal at the Paris Agricultural Show (Concours Général Agricole de Paris), is a true masterpiece that sets itself apart from the rest. What makes Henri Bardouin Pastis truly exceptional is its meticulously crafted blend of 65 thoughtfully selected plants and spices. This perfect balance ensures a flavour profile that is both captivating and enduring. Every ingredient is chosen with utmost care, specifically for its aromatic qualities. This rigorous selection process results in a pastis that is not only refined and elegant but also seamlessly complements the flavours of the food and wine served during a meal. You can indulge in this exquisite beverage without worrying about it overpowering your palate or interfering with your culinary experience.
A few days later, I was fortunate enough to embark on a tour of their distillery. Jean-Baptiste guided us through the showroom, laboratory, tasting room, ageing room, and manufacturing area. The vibrant yellow and red colors exuded a distinct Provencal feel.
Notably, Distilleries de Provence enjoys high demand not only in France but also internationally, with successful sales in New Zealand.
The tour revealed shiny new barrels and beautiful Henri Bardouin posters dotted around the property.
Afterward, I couldn't resist visiting their boutique in town, where I purchased some glasses and the authentic 'Grande Absente' absinthe, boasting the original Absinthe percentage.
Distilleries de Provence left a lasting impression, showcasing their passion, dedication, and craftsmanship. This renowned establishment truly embodies the essence of Provence.
Established in 1898, Distilleries et Domaines de Provence inherited a tradition that goes back several millennia: collecting medicinal plants on Lure mountain, known for its wealth and abundance of plant species. They have made their mark through the wide range of quality liqueurs they produce - the excellent Henri Bardouin Pastis, the traditional qualities of the Absente range and particularly the audacious Crème d’absente.
In 1974, Henri Bardouin retired but continued to work with the new team headed by his son, Jacques Bardouin, and Alain Robert. The latter is still in charge now with his son Jean-Baptiste, selling to over 60 countries around the world.
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