Mustard - some love it, some hate it, but a trip to Ghent’s most famous mustard purveyor, Tierentyen-Verlent, is a pleasant and surprising experience. Housed in a listed building, this famous speciality of Ghent has been trading the powerful condiment to the public since 1790.
The story of Tierentyen-Verlent is as much a story of the love of food as a tale of real expert craftsmanship and pride in its final product. Once it was established that the Dijon mustard grains should not be ground dry due to their high oil content, news travelled fast and the shop’s founder, Peter Tierentyn, started to ground dark mustard seeds using an old steam engine to power the mustard mill.
The store, which started mainly as a general store, continued to operate through the generations using the family’s secret recipe, using just mustard, vinegar and salt to create one of Ghent’s finest (fat free!) products.
Nowadays, the public can visit this unique building which is housed within Roman ruins. In fact, the back wall of the shop is still one of the oldest in the city and the cellars are distinctly Romanesque in design. The shop interior is beautifully preserved with all signs of modern cash registers and weighing scales carefully obscured around the multitude of ornate glass vats. The mustard is never more than 3 days old, and there are many varieties to try. Before you purchase, the shop assisntant skilfully ladles your selected mustard into a variety of labelled signature jars and jugs with not a drip in sight.
No visit to Ghent should be without a visit to Tierentyen-Verlent whether it to buy the perfect souvenir or complement the fine local Ganda ham, on sale in the medieval meat market, just across.
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