Breton fish products packer Connétable has developed a solution to the perennial problem of tiny, yet irritating, bones in canned sardines – simply by turning the tin 360º every three months.

For a product whose taste and flavour significantly improves if left in its pack for a minimum of five years, a quarterly flick of the wrist at least helps break up the waiting time. And who else but the French would have the style to treat the best of the summer catch with as much reverence as accorded to fine wines.

Connétable, sadly, only produces 40 000 cans of its designated ‘vintage’ Sardines d’Argent’ each year. Fortunately, ‘Sardines d’Argent’ – a collector’s item if ever there was one, and worthy of a shelf of its own in Robert Opie’s museum – is just one of hundreds of fish products canned by Connétable. The firm is now being managed by the fifth-generation of the founding Chancerelle family at the same Douarenez canning plant it established in 1853.

UK gourmands with time on their hands should contact the sole distributor.