There’s a great article in the September issue of GQ which explores the world of Tom Michael’s, a man who grows Tuber melanosporum, aka black truffles, in the hills of Tennessee. Black truffles are normally known to be collected in France, but Michaels is changing all of that, mining “black gold” as you could call it. I knew absolutely nothing about the truffle business before this, but it’s a good read and author Alan Richman does a great job of making me quite curious about trying them one day.
“The black truffle found in Périgord and Provence, and now Chuckey, Tennessee, has dozens of fungal relatives, some of them used in cooking, a few of them not bad at all, none of them its equal in beauty or bouquet. Once cleaned, the black Périgord truffle glitters. Cut open, the veins resemble mica. (When they are cooked, the marbling disappears.) Although the truffle possesses a pleasant crunch, it is treasured not so much for its taste or appearance but for its aroma, which has been likened to bedsheets after a night of abandon, slatterns who disdain to bathe, all that is dark and alluring about the human body and soul.”