A chat with Justine and Cédric from the Auberge Kallisté in Porto Pollo

Passionately committed to sustainable tourism

The Auberge Kallisté, situated in Porto Pollo in the Sartenais Valinco Taravo region, boasts 18 beautifully renovated rooms decorated using sustainable, environmentally-friendly materials. Its hotel restaurant offers diners a rich, refined and varied menu using only ingredients that are produced locally or grown in the owners’ vegetable garden. For 20 years now, Justine and Cédric have been successfully meeting the challenges of championing sustainable tourism at their hotel, all without going to extremes and sacrificing their guests’ comfort. In 2018, the hotel was awarded the prestigious ‘Ecolabel’, which requires establishments to satisfy a great many criteria, 29 of which are mandatory. These criteria include saving on energy, water and waste. Establishments are also expected to raise awareness among their guests of the importance of protecting the environment.

You live and work in your village and have chosen to take a thoughtful, environmentally-friendly approach to managing your hotel, which is a sign of quality for your guests. Could you give us some examples how you do this on a day-to-day basis?

 

 It comes down to really simple touches, like making sure everything is homemade, using local products, which helps us reduce a considerable amount of waste. At present we’re wasting absolutely nothing making breakfasts; there’s no individual  packaging and our compotes, jams and yoghurts are packed in reusable glass jars that we’ve been using for four years now. There are tap aerators and water flow restrictors in all the rooms and all of the light bulbs are LED. 

 

Do you have any other environmental projects in the pipeline that build on what you have already done?

 

Do you have any other environmental projects in the pipeline that build on what you have already done?

 

You’re particularly keen to share the importance of respectful, responsible tourism with your guests. How do they react to being ‘educated’ while they’re on holiday? 

Our guests come to us voluntarily to be ‘educated’! We explain the premise of our hotel to them when they check in and tell them where they can find more information in their rooms. Our guests come to us of their own accord during their stay to discuss this subject.

 

Justine, you’re the chef at the hotel restaurant, where there’s a real emphasis on homemade food. What do you look for when selecting produce for your cooking?

We try to make everything ourselves from scratch as much as possible. For example, all of our vegetables come straight from our vegetable garden or nearby vegetable gardens, the meat must come from animals reared in Corsica, so there’s no beef on our menus, and all fish comes from Corsican fisheries. The key is to follow the ‘locavore’ trend without taking it to extremes. We also serve chocolate desserts.

 

You grow your own vegetables – is this something that heavily influences what you put on your menus? Are you working on any farming projects that would enable you to be self-sufficient in food production?

 

Our first vegetable garden was somewhat improvised, but we couldn’t do without it now to maintain the quality of our cooking. The climate in Corsica is perfect for growing amazing vegetables. We’re also rearing pigs and chickens, and the family should grow even more once we take over the rearing of some sheep from Cédric’s father.

 

When we first met, I asked you what your specialty was and you answered ‘friendliness’. Does that mean we’ll feel right at home at the Auberge Kallisté?

 

Yes! Right at OUR home. Friendliness is important to us. We welcome our guests with good humour in a simple, respectful manner. We ask only for the same respect without judgement in return for our team’s commitment and hard work. We don’t make any pretence; we just think it’s important to share our hotel’s message. We serve cooking that reflects our products and values. That’s our specialty. You sleep and you eat at our hotel. 

 

Authenticity and generosity are also part of your life philosophy. Are you happy professionally?

 

Yes. And that’s an emphatic yes! We derive a lot of happiness – both professional and personal, the lines are blurred – from finding harmony and balance between all the different elements of our work, like welcoming guests, our ecology projects, growing things and managing our team. Like a tightrope walker tries not to waver, we fight every day to keep our balance. We are lucky that we both complement one another professionally and work together well to keep this harmony.

 

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 For more information on the Auberge Kallisté, visit

Internet  website

Facebook

Instagram

04 95 74 02 38

contact@auberge-kalliste.corsica

The hotel is also running a delivery service during the lockdown period

 

 

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