Truffle and Truffe
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French truffle cultivation
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The principal varieties grown
   in France
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Principal truffle varieties in France

Among the varieties that have been categorized, five are essentially produced and sold in France. They include the following types:

Tuber melanosporum Vittadini

Black truffle said about the périgord or about the Tricastin

This variety is harvested from mid-November to Mid-March; its peridium (outer layer) is composed of small wart-like bumps in a polygon form, and it is a dark brown, and black at maturity.

The truffle is normally round, and slightly bumpy. The flesh is noir/violet at maturity, with fine veins that are well marked and divided. White when cut open, the flesh turns red on contact with air.

To the nose the perfume is of a dry mushroom, humus, and wet forests. In the mouth the truffle is crunchy and soft simultaneously; at first spicy with a slight taste of black radish, then a hint of hazelnut, with a finish of wooded forest floor, sometimes earth when tasting the skin.

Tuber brumale Vittadini


This truffle is harvested between November and March. The outer skin, dark brown with black patches is fragile, and comes off easily. In a rounded bumpy form, the flesh is grayish black, translucid with large white veins that are widely spaced.

To the nose, the perfume is sometimes agreeable, but often strong and musky. On the palate there is a slight bitterness and taste of humus soil.

Tuber uncinatum Chatin

Truffle said about Bourgogne

Black with flesh at maturity that is dark brown; there are numerous white veins. To the nose a smell of mushroom, and on the palate the taste is variable; well mature the bitter taste is replaced with a pleasant hazelnut taste.

Tuber aestivum Vittadini

Truffle of Saint Jean, summer white Truffle.

This is the most common truffle but little sought out; it is harvest from May to September. The truffle is generally large in either a rounded or bumpy shape. The skin is blackish/brown.

The flesh becomes beige at maturity and it has numerous white veins.

Tuber mesentericum


This truffle is either round or irregular in shape, with a very dark outer skin, with wart-like bumps of 3-5 mm in size on the top. This truffle always has a small channel on the bottom.

Normally small in size, but it can reach the size of an egg, with grey, then dark chocolate brown flesh at maturity. It possesses white veins that form a labyrinth pattern.

Always agreeable to the nose, often strong in odor, with an after thought of phenol or tar, which disappears shortly after harvesting. Although bitter in taste, this truffle is well married with certain dishes.

Harvesting takes place from September to January, and its production zone is the same as that of the melanosporum and the brumale.

These five varieties of truffles all have different tasting and cooking qualities, which then translate into different prices.

If one takes a quality scale of 100 for the Tuber melanosporum, then the Tuber mesenterique would be in 15, 20 for the Tuber aestivum, 50 for the tuber uncinatum and 60 for the tuber brumale.


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