Black PÉrigord truffle
The prized black Périgord truffle (Tuber melanosporum Vitt.) is so-called because of its dark skin and its flesh, which ranges in colour from very dark red to brown. It has a roundish, warty appearance and is firm to the touch. It can reach a considerable size in ground particularly suited to its growth.
The black Périgord truffle is harvested and sold from winter to spring, between 15 November and 15 March to be precise. During this period, truffle hunters harvest the most aromatic and flavoursome black truffles for restaurants and gourmets all over the world. When it reaches maturity, the prized black Périgord truffle is at its most aromatic, with compact flesh characterised by marbled narrow white veins.
It grows beneath different types of trees, the most common being the downy oak, the hazel and the hornbeam. It is mostly to be found on the plains or in airy hillside woods, where the trees are spaced well apart from one another. This is because the black Périgord truffle needs light and good air circulation to grow into the exquisite product used by chefs in the preparation of sophisticated and aromatic dishes of many kinds.
Its flavour is not as strong as that of the white truffle, with aromatic notes that tend towards sweetness, so that it is known by experts as the sweet black truffle. It is best suited to short cooking times and is therefore mainly shaved over dishes, transforming them into culinary works of art thanks to its unique aroma and delicious flavour.