Once you land in the real heart of this huge country France you start to feel like in the middle of nowhere, but a lovely and green middle of nowhere. While crossing Burgundy you see sign for a castle or the castle itself almost every 10 minutes...Then when finally arriving in the region Centre lovely ancient architecture welcomes the visitors.
Several timber-framing (in French: maison à colombages or maison à pans de bois) houses decorate the centres of the cozy villages here, like for example in the cute town Aubigny sur Nere.
Today we discovered the Road of wine and cheese, visiting the wine-town Sancerre. Several cheese farms around offer one of the most famous for the Loire Valley cheese sort "Crottin de chavignol". This cylindrical goat milk cheese has been produced in the area around the village Chavignol since the 16th century.
Depending on its age the taste varies from subtle and slightly nutty to a stinky and hard one (with the aging the rind changes from white to bluish). The word "crotte" has two meanings: one is an oil lamp made from burned clay. The second one is "dung", most probably because of the changing colour with the aging of the cheese. On the pic above one can see the riping "crottin de chavignol" on the first floor and then the cheese (made from the same milk just different shape) called bouchons de chevre, looking like small white mountains.
Accomodation-tip: a lovely and very cozy place to stay in Aubigny-sur Nere is the charming B&B "La Grange des Cardeaux". A big thanks to Isabelle and Pascal for their warm welcome, delicious breakfast, comfortable room and helpful tips!