Alex is in France: Dijon, That Is!

by Guest Contributor

We’re still following Alex around France. Today he’s sharing about the region where he is living and learning – Dijon!  (Yes! Like the mustard!)




by Alex Lopez



So there’s been a mustard shortage in France. However, in the heart of the mustard producing region, there are plenty of local producers keeping the supplies up for us Dijonnaise.




The reason we have a supply of mustard available to us in Bourgogne is thanks to local agriculture. The artisanal producers of historical Dijon grow their own plants in the Bourgogne countryside. Meanwhile, mass production French mustard is the result of seeds that come from Canada. Canadian seed production has been impacted by a poor harvest due to climate change.

American Mustard

Did you know that the mustard we consume in the United States is actually from a different species of mustard than that of Dijon?Brassica Juncea, or brown mustard, provides the pungency and depth of flavor that we associate with Dijon. Meanwhile, American mustard comes from the white mustard plant (sinapis alba).

Making Mustard

Once you have seeds, those seeds need to be made into mustard. Seeds are ground using heavy mill stones. The ground seeds can then be mixed with a variety of liquids to create different base flavor profiles. A white wine, wine vinegar, or mixture of the two can be used to create a paste containing the residual seed pods. Grey Poupon, the mustard that breathed new life into Dijon, uses a variety of sieves to extract the leftover pods and create the paste that we know so well. In Dijon, however, mustard doesn’t stop with the creation of the product that we all know.





Wandering through stores here in Dijon, you’ll see mustards you’d never even thought about. The most common is cassis, or blackcurrant, which is another common ingredient grown locally in Bourgogne. Other flavors I’ve seen include mushrooms, Madagascar Black Pepper, Curry, and roasted red pepper. It’s an incredible thing to explore. 


Related Articles

Echoes Books Reprinted With Help From Local Students

by Nancy T. Duncan, Co-Chair Collections Committee Travelers Rest Historical Society   During the last few weeks, the Travelers Rest Historical Society has had the pleasure of working with some delightful young

Pamela Evette: South Carolina’s Lieutenant Governor & a TR Local

The whir of the coffee beans roasting just over our shoulders kept us company throughout the interview. Behind us, Taylor was hard at work at Leopard Forest prepping the beans

Volunteers Needed: Meals on Wheels

Doing nothing for others is the undoing of ourselves. ― Horace Mann Volunteering to help others changes us. It shapes us and it grows us. Because we all know, if