Post by Jenny Bailey
Five Foodie Experiences in Paris
The romance between Paris and fine food has been going on for centuries. As a result, the city has become one of the most renowned foodie destinations in the world.
Paris offers a number of gourmet experiences that tourists can indulge in – from pairing cheese and wine in one of Paris’s famous wine bars, to sampling garlicky escargots (or snails) in a traditional bistro. If snails sound slightly too bizarre for you, then thank your lucky stars you weren’t a visitor during the Middle Ages, when swan and peacock with gilded gold beaks were on the menu!
While most visitors to Paris will seek out traditional dishes such as coq au vin and cassoulet, it’s worth pushing your taste buds and trying the exciting haute cuisine the city is known for. For new and inventive cuisine, the « foodie movement » and the latest openings in the city, be sure to check out Le Fooding, and also L’Express foodie blog La Soif de Miam, by Anne-Laure Pham.
When it comes to classic French food, as the Hotels4U Hungry Travellers infographic above shows, there are plenty of gourmet experiences worth trying. Here are our top five:
If cheese is hands down your favourite thing about French cuisine, you need to go to Barthèlèmy. It’s regularly named the best cheese shop in Paris, which may as well make it the best cheese shop in the world. There are over 200 varieties on sale, but the creamy Camembert is their top seller.
Nearby Attraction: The Eiffel Tower, a must for all first time visitors to Paris. Book your tickets in advance to beat the worst of the queues.
They’re not for everyone, but the restaurant Roger La Grenouille is the best place in Paris to try this French favourite. Try them battered with a side of tartar sauce or go tempura style for another variation. They have been described as tasting like a cross between fish and chicken.
Nearby Attraction: On a summer’s day pack a picnic and head to Jardin du Luxembourg, the second largest public park in Paris and home to the French Senate.
Chocolate éclairs, croissants, tarte tartin… France is known for so many delicious patisserie items, but none more so than the macaron. Ladurèe, Dalloyau, Fauchon and Gregory Renard all make excellent varieties, but it’s the unusual flavours that make those sold at Pierre Hermè so special. Chocolate and foie gras is one such concoction, or try strawberry and wasabi. (Beware, NONE of Pierre Hermé’s macarons are dairy-free)
Nearby Attraction: Visit the unusual Musèe du Service des Objets Trouvès, a museum showcasing unusual items lost and found by the Paris Police.
Rustic French Cooking
French cuisine doesn’t have to be expensive, which is why the restaurant Cheri Bibi is so popular. Although only open for dinner it excels in traditional French cuisine and leans towards rustic home style cooking. The prix five menu is a great way to get a taste of many different regional dishes. The shabby chic décor is a little closer to home with many pieces picked up at the Saint Ouen flea market.
Nearby Attractions: Cheri Bibi takes inspiration for its décor from the nearby Saint Ouen flea market, where you can rummage for antique goods and vintage clothing.
Located in one of Europe’s financial centres is Harry’s New York Bar. It’s probably the most famous bar in Paris and has invented a plethora of well-known cocktails such as the Sidecar and the White Russian. They pride themselves on not having a menu, but they know the ingredients to most cocktails by heart. Why not go local and ask for a Parisian? It’s a delicious cocktail made from gin, dry vermouth and crème de cassis.
Nearby Attraction: The galleries. These covered passages lined with shops are considered to be the inspiration for the first shopping mall.
And now you know how to eat your way through Paris – if you’re ever wondering where’s best to eat and drink in Paris, keep these top 5 hotspots in mind. Your stomach and taste buds will be forever grateful. For places to stay while you’re there, check out the Hotels4U website.