National Geographic Traveller (UK)
Q // I’d like to try a truehunting tour or course in the UK this season. Are there any you recommend?
English trues are on a trajectory similar to that of our sparkling wine: going from little-known product to drawing deserved respect in culinary circles. While it’s accepted that our native trues don’t pack the punch of their French cousin, the Périgord ( Tuber melanosporum), which is now cultivated worldwide, English native trues can be a revelation.
A prerequisite of any experience should always be a seasoned guide who can explain the full picture. The English
True Company will get you up to speed in Dorset, Wiltshire and Hampshire between late September and January each year. A day-long experience starts with a true 101 of sorts, delving into the fascinating mycology at play, as well as where they grow, what to look for, and the important question of eating. In between lunch and aernoon tea, where you’ll be served a simple true dish, you take to the woods with true hunter James Feaver and his dogs. The prize? The delicacy that is black autumn true ( Tuber uncinatum).
Wiltshire Trues is a name known to the country’s top chefs. While founder Zak Frost doesn’t operate tours or courses, he does recommend booking in-season at restaurants that have nurtured the renaissance of English trues. Among them are The Fat Duck, in Bray, Berkshire, and The Pig’s portfolio of restaurants with rooms, many of which are in the true heartlands of the South West. Adam Handling’s restaurant, Ugly Butterfly, in Cornwall’s Carbis Bay, gets the nod. englishtru es.co.uk wiltshiretru es.com