Text and Photography by Allison Connolly • Photograph Courtesy of Tourisme de Nantes Métropole
All the gastronomic delights of western France—crêpes, Muscadet wine, salted butter, seafood, and tea, sure, tea—are discovered in town of Nantes, located on the Loire River, 40 miles inland from the Atlantic Ocean. This birthplace of novelist Jules Verne is traditionally and culturally linked to each Brittany and the Loire Valley. Countless guests descend on town to go to the Château of the Dukes of Brittany, stroll alongside the banks of the river, admire superbly preserved 18th-century structure, and taste distinctive regional wines.
The French are studying to prize tea as they do their superb wines. As tea consumption grows in France, so too does curiosity in excessive-high quality tea and distinctive tea experiences.
Proof of French ardour for tea is Nantes’ tea-drinkers membership—Le Club des buveurs du thé. Founded in 2002, the membership at the moment has 30 energetic members who take part in numerous actions, together with tea tastings, modern tea and meals pairings, conferences with tea authors, tea-infused meals, and excursions to different European cities to share and find out about tea. In addition, membership members have the privilege of harvesting tea from town’s backyard of tea bushes, a present from Nantes’ sister metropolis Suncheon, South Korea. Enthusiasts will uncover a spread of tearooms and tea outlets to quench their thirst for a correct teatime.