Discovering Vendée’s gastronomy
An overview of the sea specialities to be tasted in Vendée!
When we talk about Vendée, we must have poetic images in mind: the Vendée Globe ships at the start of the race, the sandy beaches spreading as far as the eye can see, the canals of the Marais Poitevin … But Vendée is also a gastronomic tradition taking root both in the land and in the ocean. A small zoom today on the gastronomy of the sea …
Your hotel in Vendée allows you to taste a large part of local specialties. Oyster pots, sardines and Fisherman’s pot are on the menu at the seafood buffets served at Le Plaisance restaurant in your hotel.
At the heart of oyster farming in Vendée
Our hotel in Vendée, les Jardins de l’ Atlantique, is an ideal place for oyster lovers. It is located in Talmont-Saint-Hilaire, where lies the Payré estuary, the largest natural area in the region. The oysters that are raised there benefit from remarkable conditions, with a very mineral and nutrient-rich water.
Moreover, the companies approved to exploit the pond still work with the traditional technique of wooden fish traps, more respectful of the environment and favoring the development of the ecosystem. Finally, the estuary allows the production of oysters in clear waters, which gives them a less pronounced taste than those from the open sea.
Restaurants of Vendée regularly offer oysters and other seafood on the menu. All you have to do is choose the size and the wine to accompany them.
The sea on your plate
Vendée gastronomy knows all about iodine flavours. The seafood and other sand fishes are the basis of many regional dishes, not to mention the white gold of the region: salt! Local specialties include:
- Sardines: fished since the 17th century, sardine is a classic from Vendée. The technique of canning with olive oil comes from the region, for a maturing process that can take decades! The sardine of Saint Gilles-Croix-de-Vie has also obtained the Red Label Quality assurance, unique for a wild fish.
- The sole of the sands: also known as “la Sablaise”, is regularly found on the menu of restaurants in Vendée. Its firm flesh is cooked as well in fillets in a miller way.
- Mussels: in addition to oyster culture, mussel farming also contributes to the region’s reputation. Especially the mussels of bouchots, raised on these piles of oak planted in the water, sometimes a few centuries old. The result is a small but full product with a beautiful yellow color and a pronounced taste.
- Salt flower: in Noirmoutier or in Sables d’Olonne, salt marshes use ancestral techniques to extract the salt flower from the brine, and then refine it to make it edible. Salt that one finds afterwards on the tables of the restaurants of Vendée and elsewhere.