Mustard originating from Meaux.
The Paris region is characterized by fertile soil composed of sediments. The limestone, formed thousands of years ago and covered with a layer of dense millstone, was used for making millstones used for grinding grain. During that time, businesses would establish themselves near the extraction sources due to the lack of modern transportation. Thus, in the 15th century, the town of La Ferté-sous-Jouarre, located a few kilometers from Meaux and connected by the Marne River, became an important center of renowned quarrying, exporting its millstones to England and North America. These millstones were considered the best in Europe. Thanks to this local expertise, clergy members, responding to Charlemagne's demand, cultivated mustard in the bishoprics. The millstones were used to grind mustard seeds and obtain flour, which was particularly used for medicinal purposes as poultices. Later on, the mustard as we know it today was used to mask the taste of food that wasn't always fresh. In the 18th century, numerous mustard makers in Meaux revived this tradition, already producing on an industrial scale for that time, thus perpetuating the legacy of the Canons.
The Pommery family and Meaux mustard.
J.B. Pommery, originally from the Champagne region, was assigned to Meaux during his military service. During this time, he fell in love with a young woman, the daughter of a miller, and decided to settle in the Meaux region for several generations. It was in 1760 that a prominent member of the venerable Meaux Chapter transmitted to him the famous recipe derived from the preparation of the canons. J.B. Pommery dedicated himself to perpetuating this high-quality preparation, which quickly gained great renown and was highly appreciated on royal tables for many decades. Thus, Moutarde de Meaux® Pommery® was born. In addition to mustard production, J.B. Pommery also operated a millstone quarry. The Meaux and La Ferté-sous-Jouarre region housed the most renowned quarries for these special stones. Over time, the Pommery family became the last to continue the tradition of mustard-making in Meaux, thus perpetuating a precious heritage.
When Les Vinaigreries du Lion took over the production of the famous Moutarde de Meaux® Pommery®.
In 1865, a man named Mr. Mathon founded Les Vinaigreries du Lion, a company located in Lagny-sur-Marne. In 1890, it was acquired by the Chamois family. At that time, the company specialized in producing high-quality vinegar from white alcohol. France was divided into two regions, separated by the Loire River. The northern part of the country sourced its raw material from sugar beets, while the southern part used wine. For many decades, the vinegar factory produced and supplied the vinegar used in the preparation of the famous Moutarde de Meaux® Pommery®. It was only natural for the company to take over the production of this renowned mustard. In 1949, Pierre Chamois received the recipe and established Les Assaisonnements Briards to separate the mustard business from the vinegar business. With its local and national reputation, this centuries-old ancestral recipe began to be exported in the 1970s. Pierre Chamois set out to introduce this typically French culinary preparation, which was internationally appreciated, to the rest of the world.
An unchanged recipe since 1632 for a collection rich in flavors.
Today, Moutarde de Meaux® Pommery® carefully guards its manufacturing secrets and remains unchanged since 1632. Through meticulous ingredient selection and the successful familial transmission of unparalleled craftsmanship, Moutarde de Meaux® Pommery® has successfully traversed the centuries. The collection now offers unprecedented flavors, such as Moutarde Pommery® with black truffle, Moutarde de Meaux® Pommery® with preserved lemon zest and basil leaves, Moutarde de Meaux® Pommery® with wild Voatsiperifery pepper, and Moutarde de Meaux® Pommery® with Espelette chili pepper. All of these flavors will delight even the most discerning palates of epicureans. Les Assaisonnements Briards, in collaboration with the Chamois family, remains the only company today to perpetuate the tradition of Moutarde de Meaux® Pommery®.
How to open a wax jar:
To open the jar, gently break the wax around the edges using the back of a knife. Then, carefully slide the knife tip between the cork and the pottery and go around the jar. Next, use a small brush with stiff bristles to remove any remaining small wax particles that may still be sticking to the jar.