What Is It?
An artisan culinary oil company, La Tourangelle specializes in artisan oils (grapeseed and sunflower, pistachio and truffle, etc.) and also crafts a line of gourmet pantry items, including nut butters. La Tourangelle, which translates to “the woman from Tours,” uses traditional practices such as hand roasting and filtering oil through cotton instead of centrifuging to remove small particles. They run a heritage oil mill and business in Saumur, France (west of Tours) as well as mills in Woodland, California (west of Sacramento).
How Does It Taste?
The craftmanship employed in roasting almonds is evident from the moment you open the jar. Roasted in cast iron, the almonds emanate a rich, toasty aroma unlike any almond butter I’ve tasted before. There is depth and a whole-hearted fullness to the flavor as well. Spooned straight from the jar, it is an almond butter that envelops you with its full-bodied character.
+ The French Roast Almond Butter contains only almonds. There is no added salt, palm oil, sugar or other stuff to distract your palate.
+ I would call the butter “creamy” but there is a fuller mouthfeel than with other almond butters. The company does not declare the style on the package. It is definitely not crunchy.
+ Because of the traditional process, the nut oils will rise to the top, even after stirring to incorporate them.
+ The body of the butter is smooth enough to make the process rather easy, not nearly as stiff and challenging as with some other, more dense almond butters. Perhaps it is the additional almond oil that gives these nut butters their smooth, not too dense, character?
+ The butter is packed in a plastic jar sourced from post-consumer recycled waste on plastic packaging.
Fleur de Sel Almond Butter
Just the right amount of salt makes everything better. In this case, the Fleur de Sel almond butter is just as fragrant as the French Roast Almond Butter, but that pinch of salt adds brightness to the warm nuttiness. It comes in at 140 mg sodium for 2 Tablespoons of almond butter, on par with other competitors in the natural foods space. The added sea salt adds a delicate crunch to the experience. Recommend.
Almond butter with a toasty, well-rounded, creamy to the max flavor. No funny stuff! French style almond butter made in California for the win. Très bien.