Kintoa Ham

Exceptional meat and ham

Kintoa Ham is an exceptional ham, just as a Grand Cru is for wine. The breeding and processing of racy Basque pigs is the subject of ancestral and natural know-how that results in a tender and juicy meat that will release exceptional aromas in the mouth, based on nuts and roasted spices.

1. The Kintoa terrory
2. AOC
3. Recognize the Kintoa

It is in the heart of a privileged natural environment that breeders and animals flourish. The Kintoa production area covers 231 municipalities, 157 of which are in the Basque Country, 69 in Béarn and 5 in the Landes.

The Appellation area enjoys a mild and humid climate under the influence of the Atlantic Ocean and warm winds from the South. The south wind, the Foehn, called Haïze Hegoa in Basque, is a fundamental element for the maturing of Kintoa Hams. It intermittently brings strong heat and dry air all year round, with temperatures that can rise by 10°C in a few hours.

The geology of the Appellation, marked by the proximity of the Pyrenees, explains its particular relief, consisting of a succession of massifs with rounded and grassy passes, imposing and steep hills, and deep valleys.

Where to buy Kintoa Ham ?

In half ham, whole or boneless, kintoa ham is of course the other specialty of the house. “Our hams are certified Protected Geographical Indication (PGI) and come from pigs born. Raised and slaughtered in the Basque Country,” says Cédric Bergez. In the shop’s stall, the jewel of Bayonne gastronomy happily mixes Basque sausages and dry sausages, traditional smoked bellies or those rubbed with Espelette chilli pepper, Basque tripe, Basque sausages, andouilles…

The Aubard delicatessen also offers all the specialities around duck and it is very difficult not to succumb to its foie gras[fresh or canned], duck breasts, aiguillettes, homemade confits. When you turn around, on the delicatessen side, you will be seduced by the pretty variety of preserves, pâtés, rillettes, ready meals, axoa, piperade).

It is also for its catering qualities that Aubard has been recognized for nearly seventy years. In the Bayonne store first of all, with many local specialities, such as veal axoa, Biscayan cod, paella, chipirons à la luzienne, and even classics of French gastronomy, such as beef bourguignon and veal blanquette l the charcuterie also offers its catering services to individuals and companies, thanks to the quality of its country buffet: delicatessen trays, chiffonades. tapas, canapés, cocktail verrines…

On the occasion of the 55th edition of the Ham Fair, in addition to its traditional stand, the Aubard delicatessen has the honour of holding for the first time the restaurant located under the salting tent. A temple os tastes !

The Kintoa Ham territory

It is in this rich landscape where a diversity of environments coexist that Basque pigs are raised. With a total surface area of 360 hectares, including 222 hectares of meadows and 138 hectares of forests, the animals find all the fundamental natural resources for breeding in the Kintoa Appellation on their way.

The vegetation of the courses is characterized by the dominant presence of grass, eagle ferns, heather, gorse, hazelnuts, pedunculated oaks, chestnuts, and beech trees at high altitudes.

The Kintoa Ham AOC ( Controlled Designation of Origin)

Kintoa has been recognised as an Appellation d’Origine Contrôlée since 17 August 2017. The AOC specifies the different rules in a specification, from the birth of the piglets to the curing of the hams. The breeders, farmers and craftsmen of Kintoa have chosen a demanding set of specifications, based on ancient traditions, respectful of animals and the environment.
The main rules are:

– The geographical area of breeding and processing is limited to 231 municipalities (Basque Country, neighbouring Béarn and 5 municipalities in the Landes).

– The meat comes exclusively from purebred Basque pigs.

– The breeding of pigs is done in small batches of 40 pigs maximum on paths composed of meadows, moors and woods.

– Loading is limited to 35 pigs per hectare of grassland or heathland and 25 pigs per hectare of grassed forest.

– The pigs are fed from the meadows and a complementary ration of non-GMO cereals produced in the geographical area.

– The pigs are reared up to a maximum of 12 months, with a minimum carcass weight of 100 kg and a minimum fat thickness of 25 mm.

Kintoa Ham AOC / AOP

The hams are salted with Salt of Salts of Bearn PGI (Protected Geographical Indication). All the manufacturing steps are specified, from salting to rest, from steaming to drying to maturing. The production time for hams is at least 16 months. The hams are matured on wooden frames and in natural conditions, taking advantage of the alternation of warm winds from the south with the sea air from the ocean. The maturing process gives the product its unique taste, which is inimitable elsewhere.

Kintoa pork and Kintoa Ham, unique products of their terroir,
evokes in the mouth a cultural and gastronomic heritage.

How to recognize  the Kintoa Ham ?

Kintoa Meat

The contrast of intense red meat and bright white fat
A finely marbled meat, infiltrated with intramuscular fat
A tender and juicy meat
An intense taste
A unique meat

Kintoa Ham

An oval and elongated silhouette adorned with Espelette chilli pepper PDO
An intense red colour enhanced by a white colour of fat Intensely marbled
A beautiful aromatic complexity between butter, undergrowth and hazelnut
Melting and juicy with a nice length in the mouth
An exceptional ham

Would you like to discover our recipes? Learn how to mix your delicious spices with our Kintoa products from the Basque breed, ideal to accompany a dish, or to make it a masterpiece!