FAVOURITE ice cream flavours such as caramel and fleur de sel are giving way to … oyster in an ice cream parlour on the Ile-de-Ré.
François-Xavier Cathala is one of France’s top five glaciers and his shop in Saint-Martin-de-Ré, Charente-Maritime, serves 7,000 customers a day and, as he makes all the ices himself, tries innovative flavours and textures to tempt people to try something different.
And the oyster flavour from La Martinière is certainly that. Oyster flesh is used to make a “stock” or bouillon with white wine and then mixed in with cream with zest of lemon and topped with a teaspoon of Aquitaine caviar.
French people eat six litres of ice cream a year with their firm favourites being the classics of vanilla, chocolate, rum and raisin, coffee, mint, pistachio and caramel. Among the sorbets, lemon, pear, coconut and cassis are the favourite flavours.
American food flavour expert Dr Alan Hirsch says favourite ice cream flavours help reveal a person’s personality:
Vanilla is for someone impulsive, idealistic and impressionable; chocolate is for someone dramatic, seductive and naive; strawberry is tolerant, dedicated and introverted, coffee is scrupulous, conscientious and perfectionist. No mention of oyster.