For the Love of Food and Community
“L’art de la table” is at the heart of our lives, and we have found that truffles are the perfect metaphor for our aspirations in life. They embody connection and community: the reunion between hard labor and the pleasure of sophisticated fine dining, the symbiosis between mushroom and tree, the partnership between huntress and dog. When paired with even the simplest of rustic dishes, this earthy mushroom shines and displays its aromatic brilliance. It is our strong belief that our “joie de vivre” is centered around the dining table and the community it builds, and what better medium than with the truffle, the symbol for “simple quality.”
A supportive community
Jumping into an unknown and uncertain future is a scary yet exciting decision. A major reassurance for us was finding partners. New World Truffieres and it’s annual Oregon Truffle Festival have created a community of enthusiasts and dreamers that live by “talking about truffles;” by contributing and sharing, and following the Open Source model of development. We felt truly welcomed. We knew that, with the support of this dedicated community, we could throw ourselves full heartedly into this adventure.
This community has taught us most of what we know, and seeing that so much of the world of truffles is still undiscovered or wrought with superstition, we want to actively give back. Our contribution will come in the form of detailed logs of our cultivation processes and their results. We are also looking for researchers interested in partnering with us to better understand the mysteries of truffle farming.
One question we are already attempting to answer is whether transplanting seedlings with bare roots impacts future truffle production. There is empirical evidence that transporting the trees bare, without their original potting soil, should not affect the colonization of the roots by the truffle fungus. However, we do not have scientific data supporting this observation. Answering this question will help nurseries and future producers decide on the optimal method for transferring the trees from nurseries to orchards.
In for the long haul, this project goes beyond the truffle itself and has connections to us on several levels. On a global scale, we are proud to contribute to the greater good by reducing our carbon footprint with our fully organic orchard of approximately 3,600 trees. On a personal scale we feel that the truffles tie us back to our roots. Inspired by our family’s truffle orchard in southern France, we celebrate our heritage with Clos Racines. On the most personal level, we find joy in the labor associated with the cultivation of each individual tree, and the length of this process is what brings us to a deeper connection with the land around us. We look forward to the days of roaming the orchard with our dogs, unearthing these hidden gems, and would be so proud to bring these amazing experiences to the Bay Area and beyond.
Facts about Clos Racines
A truffle orchard (truffière) located in Lake county, California, family owned, family managed.
Twenty six acres planted with oak inoculated with Tuber melanosporum (Perigord truffle).
Largest known truffle orchard in California to date.
Phase one, first 1,000 English oak (Q. robur) trees planted in April 2018.
Phase two, with over 2,600 trees planted in April 2019 included mostly English oak (Q. robur), and a group of experimental trees comprised of 200 Valley oaks (Q. lobata), 35 Oregon white oak (Q. garryana), and 34 California black oak (Q. kelloggii).
Gopher infestation are killing the trees
Bind weed (morning glory) control
Wild fires and floods
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