Stages of manufacture
Gravity fed irrigation happens by submersion: the meadow is flooded but the water mustn’t sit. It tends to begin around March 15th. The same plot is watered several times for 8-10 days until the first heavy autumn rainfall (September and October). Watering can be stopped depending on rainfall or hay harvest.
Environment and Foin de Crau
The Foin de Crau meadows are integral to Salon’s identity and landscape. They also play a key role in the land’s environmental balance. Gravity fed irrigation enables the Crau’s phreatic zone to get a regular supply of water and provides water to communities (300,000 people). It’s also an essential resource for business sectors and enhances remarkable ecosystems.
Fine dining and Foin de Crau
Alain Passard bought his former mentor Alain Senderens’ L’Archestrate restaurant (3*) in 1986 and renamed it L’Arpège. That’s where and when he started making chicken with hay. His innovative use of hay saw him joined by David Toutain (hay-smoked brioche buns with foie gras and eel), Marc Veyrat (frozen hay), Emmanuel Renaut (pigeon roasted in hay and juniper), Cyril Lignac (Lozère lamb with caramelised skin and Foin de Crau) and many more. Chefs love cooking with hay as it gives the dishes a smoky taste with plant-based flavours.