A delicious and protected crustacean
A protected species, barnacle fishing is highly regulated. The season runs from mid-January to mid-March, then from September 16 to November 14. The barnacle grows in clusters and lives attached to rocks beaten by the waves, in the tidal swing zone, mainly on the wild coast of Belle-Ile-en-Mer, at the foot of the shale cliffs. It is here that we find the largest deposit of France! To get some, go to the market of Le Palais, the small capital of the island. This is where you have the best chance to buy your barnacle* directly from a professional fisherman.
Black bee honey, a flavor made unique
By the preserved flora of Belle-île
Another treasure of the island: the black bees and the honey of Belle-île. Protected because so fragile. The black bee, distinct from other species on the mainland is perfectly adapted to the wild flowers of Belle-île, and thus produces a unique honey. Each honey is a piece of the island, the reflection of a territory and a season. The wild flora of Belle-île gives the honey a taste that can hardly be found anywhere else. The chestnut and acacia flowers that the bees of Belle-île gather give the honey a spicy flavor.
Lamb du large, a traditional breeding
An exceptional meat
Very mostly based on grass-fed breeding in human-sized farms, this production allows the maintenance of landscapes and food autonomy to limit imports or transport of fodder and grains. It is, moreover, a real asset for biodiversity: by maintaining the meadows, sheep farming preserves a balance between the fauna – including pollinating insects such as the black bee – and the flora.
In Brittany, the breeding of salt-meadow lamb concerns several sectors of the coast, in particular the Crozon peninsula, the island of Ouessant, and of course, Belle-Île. The fine, soft and tasty flesh of this lamb does not require sophisticated preparations and its flavor is best expressed when it is grilled with herbs (rosemary, thyme or pleuric, the local name for oregano) or roasted in salted butter.
The lamb of Belle-Île-en-Mer benefits from the oceanic climate, full of sea spray, which combined with the grass and aromatic flowers have comparable effects on the quality of its meat. To qualify for the label, created in 1994, the lambs must be born on Belle-Île, spend a minimum of 60 days in the pasture and feed only on farm products.