Quality produce from the abbeys and convents
© Mayenne Tourisme

Monastic produce

So familiar, and yet on a different spiritual plane...

“Be in the world without being in the world”, the famous biblical injunction is the daily life of the monastic community.

The brothers and sisters share a life of prayer and hard work, hidden from view but always welcoming to the respectful visitor. At the heart of Mayenne’s serenity, three monastic communities flourish today.

They sell their produce and offer guided tours as well as spiritual retreats in their hostels, allowing you to get closer those who have chosen an alternative way of life.

La Côtellerie, a “brand new” priory

In 1971, the community of the Little Brothers of Mary arrived in the Bazougers countryside. Since then, the buildings of the old property have been restored and extended. A church was built, starting in 1989 and was consecrated in 1994. The architecture, of Romanesque inspiration, is sober and meditative.

It is possible to visit the abbey, with its blend of contemporary and medieval monastic traditions. The brothers produce cider and apple juice, nougat and fruit jellies.

Their shop also sells beautiful religious books.

La Coudre, an oasis of calm in the city

At the heart of the vast Coudre Abbey in Laval, you can cast-off the surrounding city and the nearby road. This large Cistercian nun community brings together some fifty sisters, and has often been the subject of television reports.

The Sisters of La Coudre make a cheese from cow’s milk which is the direct heir – using the same process – of the famous cheese created by the monks of Port Salut. We also recommend their flans and desserts.

The Port Salut, on the Mayenne

This place is historic in many ways. The best way to approach the majestic abbey is along the Mayenne towpath, with its small islands and beautiful homes… an enchanting walk. Notre Dame du Port du Salut, abbey of the Trappist brothers, is a haven of peace, while its auberge is highly sought-after.

At the entrance to the abbey, the monastic produce store is particularly well stocked.

Find out about guided tours.

Monastic produce, discover the spiriual world

For many religious communities, the manufacture and sale of high quality produce ensures their economic survival, allowing the contemplative life to continue. Each monastery sells its own products alongside products from other monasteries and convents.

It is a tradition among the different religious communities that they also sell their rivals’ products – there is always a wide variety of food sweets, drinks, beautiful books, music and sacred art for sale.

These little shops are a treasure trove of secret skills and crafts.

Fromage Port Du Salut EntrammesFromage Port Du Salut EntrammesFromage Port Du Salut Entrammes

Did you know…

The Abbey of Entrammes (Port Salut Abbey) was the first monastery to reopen in France after the Revolution. The monks of Entrammes created Port du Salut cheese in 1874, which then became the famous Port-Salut, which they produced until 1959.

 

Jacques B.

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