Perigord Truffles, or Black Winter Truffles, are the most desirable variety of truffles from France. These Perigord Truffles belong to the Aquitaine gourmet products renowned worldwide such as the traditional Aquitaine Foie Gras. This special variety of mushrooms typical from the South of France has a very distinctive, fancy taste that can complement many local dishes and Grand Chefs’ recipes.
Generally speaking, in France, truffles used to be detected by pigs that have been especially trained to find these rare mushrooms but dogs more commonly used nowadays. In Perigord and the other neighbouring regions of France, they like to mention another intriguing – yet funny – method of finding truffles: observing where the “truffle fly” lays its eggs. It is believed that these flies choose only the finest truffle in which to do this! Considering such particularities, Perigord Black Truffles are known as a luxury French product sometimes called “black diamonds” and especially appreciated by foodies.
Varieties of truffles that can be found in South-Western France include 6 types, amongst which the Perigord Black Truffle (tuber melanosporum) and the Burgundy Truffle (tuber uncinatum /aestivum). The other famous variety - White truffle or Alba Truffle is the most expensive and rare type, it only grows up in Italy because of the soil's pH.
For black winter truffles - known as Perigord Truffles, the growing period is from November to March, but benefiting from a long growing season, this French variety of truffle can be enjoyed almost throughout the year. That is why these special mushrooms typical from the South-West regions of France are now the best known and most widely used variety of truffle.
Top Tip! Do not mix up White truffles and Black Truffles! Compared to the Perigord Black Truffles, the white variety of truffle is very rare and expensive, mainly produced in Italy. In 2004/5, the average price in European markets, per kilo, was £1100 for White truffles and £600 for Black truffles. You may now understand why South-West typical dishes and most famous Chefs' recipes widely tend to include the French Black Truffles!