Les Grands Rendez-vous – Marie-Nicole Lemieux and Karina Gauvin
July 29, 2017
Challenge Casino de Charlevoix
November 23 to 26, 2017
Co-founder of Champignons Charlevoix
“It is said that people from here are very articulate. That’s probably what made me this tenacious and determined woman. That must be it, the strength of the mountains.
I left Charlevoix to later return, the year of my 40th birthday. So long Montréal, hello Charlevoix. Jean-Pierre – my spouse – and I bought my father’s winter cabin, at the foot of Mont Grand-Fonds. This is where we’ve started to build our dream. While taking a stroll, one day, we hit a mushroom and what do you know, an idea emerged: we would grow oyster mushrooms.
Fifteen years ago, nobody believed that a mushroom farm in Québec would survive. I had not even eaten an oyster mushroom before. No problem, we’ll learn. Today, we grow 10 tons of oyster mushrooms per year and our laboratory is integrated to the Charlevoix Flavour Trail. Every summer, hundreds of tourists stop by to taste our unmatched pesto and our delicious pickled oyster mushrooms.
Whenever our schedules allow it, we go shopping at the fabulous bakery, Pains d’exclamation and then head to Saint-Irénée Beach – the nicest in Charlevoix – or to Port-au-Persil, one of Québec’s most beautiful villages. Sometimes my artist’s past resurfaces. I then run to the Musée d’art contemporain de Baie-Saint-Paul and visit the Symposium d’art contemporain every year in August.
A real go-getter? This is what the Dragons* said about me a few years ago when they proposed to buy 30% of my company. I still hear about it today. You’re the one who refused the Dragon’s offer? It is really me and I have never regretted my decision”.
*Dans l’oeil du dragon is a popular television show broadcasted in Québec.