AUP Food Culture Communications



In January 2013, Christy Shields received a research grant from the CIGC to undertake ethnographic research focused on the elaboration and use of Comté's "Wheel of Aromas" as well as the related “jury terroir” (terroir tasting panels). Learn more about Christy's research ...



Le Comité Interprofessionnel du Gruyère de Comté


Observatoire Cniel des habitudes Alimentaires

aaicCentre Edgar-Morin

In the Jura

Comte cheese

After classroom instruction in Paris, we join Claire in the Jura for an in-depth exploration of the French notion of "terroir" and taste, focusing our attention in particular on the renowned Comté cheese, which we follow from the cow to consumption.

We begin our stay with an in-depth introduction to taste and tasting led by Claire, and then follow our senses through the rest of the trip. Participants meet farmers, cheese makers, cheese agers, the director of communications, etc. during visits to farms, "fruitières," cheese cellars, taste laboratories, and so on. Participants also get a sense of the larger regional fabric by meeting with wine makers, snail farmers, sheperds, chefs, botanists and others.  All of these experiences are focused on gaining an in-depth view of the French notion of "terroir," a concept which links place, taste and culture.

And we eat well. We dine in gastronomic restaurants, but also share simple and delicious meals prepared by Denis and Valerie, the owners of the "Gite de Planches," where we stay during our trip. Other eating establishments include a mountain auberge, a corner bistro, and a school cafeteria. We taste a variety of the region's artisanal products, including: the famous "yellow wine," the smoked "saucisse de Morteau," and locally made absinthe. Finally, we also do a fair amount of cooking ourselves. Indeed, the journey ends with the students preparing pizzas from scratch and inviting their various hosts from the week to share in the meal.

Conviviality is the crux of the students' experience in the Jura, because it is central to eating well in France and often inaccessible to those visiting, who generally consume in public places, privately.

Visit the Photo Gallery

Learn more about the Jura region.

Jura waterfall