The Region

Didier de Courten has retained his farming grandparents’ love of nature.  As the seasons progressed, he was attracted by the scents, colours and breath of nature itself.  He is inspired by his Valais. «I feel very close to my country. It revitalises me. The steepness of mountains, richness of vines and the scent of the undergrowth... This backdrop has shaped my way of being, living and thinking »

Didier de Courten lived in the Val d'Anniviers area for several years. He raised several Herens breed cows there. This is an emblematic breed from Valais which has been attached to the region for more than 5000 years. Didier de Courten has also prevented producers from breeding cows for creating stars of cow fighting. Looking after cattle allows him to share in the producers’ sense of well being. This is one way for him to reconnect with the country.

«Between plain and mountains»

A "frontier" town between German Haut-Valais and French Bas-Valais, Sierre is a small town with 35,000 inhabitants. Situated at an altitude of 533 metres, it enjoys a privileged climate which has given it the title of “the town of sunshine”.

The town contains several houses which are worth visiting. The 18th century Maison de Courten houses the Rainer Maria Rilke Foundation and the Caves de Courten cultural area.

Built in the 16th Century the Château de Villa has been converted into a cheese and wine restaurant showcasing Valais wines. The nearby Musée de la Vigne et du Vin traces the evolution of wine growing in the Valais region.

As an area for pleasure and relaxation, the lake at Géronde attracts water sports enthusiasts as well as those who enjoy romantic walks.

Those who play golf can use the excellent 18 hole Brèche course at Sierre. The course is a true gift of nature with viewpoints over the Alps and the surrounding area, with numerous varieties of flowers and trees as well as fish, birds and other fauna.

Attached to the right bank of the Rhone the Val d'Anniviers displays true authenticity. Walking or mountaineering in summer, as well as snowy slopes for piste or cross-country skiing...Nature truly holds the key to life’s pleasures.

On a plateau overlooking the plain, Crans-Montana is home to all the finest attractions of the right hand bank. This small mountain town is a capital of deluxe shopping which boasts ski slopes of 1500 to 3000 metre altitude as well as the world’s most beautiful alpine golf course. Those who are less sporty can enjoy walks in the grandiose scenery or profit from visits to numerous art galleries.

40 km from Sierre, Martigny has one of the most prestigious museums in Switzerland: La Fondation Pierre Gianadda, however the country also has other exhibition houses and museums of interest.

Local cuisine

Didier de Courten loves working with local products. Cured Valais AOC meat, Val d'Anniviers ham, Heren breed beef, alpine cheeses, rye bread, saffron, fruits and vegetables... A true Garden of Eden, the Valais region provides Didier with ingredients which are bursting with sunshine and flavours.

For Didier de Courten many products are good enough on their own. "Our alpine cheeses are excellent. Tasted with a good Ermitage and a slice of rustic rye bread, they provides sure-fire bliss.”

Using local products pays tribute to the producers and traditions of the country. Memory and permanence also travel through excellent food.

Saffron is one of Valais’ most mythical products. Saffron was common in the middle ages and its production still takes place today at Mund, Venthône, Sion and Martigny. Didier de Courten is directly linked historically to the production of Valaisan saffron: On 30 June 1647, Suzanne de Courten sold a saffron production site at Anchette to Jean-Antoine de Preux with this agreement of her husband Antoine de Cabulo. Those who sold the property could not have imagined that 350 years later their descendants would share their same passion for wonderful spices and in the Autumn season Didier de Courten scents his dishes with saffron picked from the Bernard de Preux plot.