Pont Noir

Live Life in Creuse

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A rare sight!
by Creusebear • Sat 21 Apr 2018 15:51
Saw this parked up in a local village car park. 'Le brouyeur de cru' (sp?) I had heard there were still a few around but had never seen one up close. There was a plaque on the boiler dating it at 1926!
I wish I had stayed longer to chat to the owner. He told me that once he retires there will be no-one to take his place and the still will be destroyed by the police. I hope he will be able to donate it to a museum at least! A real piece of French rural history.
alambic3.jpg alambic2.jpg alambic1.jpg
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May 2007
Re: A rare sight!
by sevy1 • Tue 24 Apr 2018 21:26
Hi Creusebear
Really interesting piece of Kit. Is the use of a still against the law?
I saw something similar at the apple festival in St Feyre a couple of years ago.
Sep 2013
Re: A rare sight!
by virtdave • Tue 24 Apr 2018 21:43
I think French law allows the owner of a still (alembic) to continue using it until he dies....it cannot be sold or willed to an heir. A broyeur de cru is the machine which grinds stuff up, for instance the stuff one wants to ferment, then distill. We had some brandy produced by what was probably the last legal still in Magnat l'Etrange, many years ago.
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Sep 2008
Re: A rare sight!
by Creusebear • Sat 28 Apr 2018 12:50
Our neighbours took along nearly 100 litres of fermenting soft fruit (mainly plums) they had been keeping in a plastic vat and feeding with sugar since last summer. It was processed and distilled in one day. They came away with 17 litres of 'la goutte' or there was another name they used too ( nueaulle sp?). I had a sniff and it had a heady fruity aroma. Apparently the guy was very complimentary about the quality they had achieved. You have to pay duty on the stuff so it is entirely legal. Obviously the men in grey suits want to phase it out so the business cannot be passed down the family as before, although apparently if some someone had got the right college qualifications they could still carry on the trade. I have seen more modern travelling stills in Normandy. They move around the apple orchards transforming dry cider into Calvados at the individual orchards.
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May 2007
Re: A rare sight!
by patricksussex • Wed 09 May 2018 13:26
Not posted for ages, so thought I would add that we are just back from Normandy (after 5 days in the Creuse). Last weekend was the annual AOC festival in Cambremer, Calvados, and yes there was a mobile still on display. Hardly modern though!
Dec 2013
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