Gourmet Shopping in Paris
09 March, 2016
La Grande Epicerie
The food section of Le Bon Marché department store is a veritable paradise for foodies. It carries a vast selection of all types of exquisitely laid out products imaginable. The best French and international brands are featured here, and the establishment this year launched its own brand. The basement has a beautiful wine cellar divided according to the different French DOs, and a restaurant – Le Balthasar. Some areas, like the cheese and fish sections, have a bar counter and tasting tables. Also on sale are themed gift hampers (retro, aperitif, picnic, Breton, girly, etc.) which you can customise to your taste.
Probably the most famous brand of macarons worldwide and, no wonder – they are super! They come in chic boxes running from €17.10 for six pieces to €127.65 for 55 pieces. The range of flavours includes delicate macarons, such as fleur d’oranger or rose petal; sweet, like the chocolate or salted caramel, and original ones like the smooth fruit and spices or the Marie-Antoinette tea. They have various tea rooms at different spots in Paris with truly delightful retro-romanticist interior design. If you don’t have the time to drop in on on one of their establishments, you can get hold of a box of macarons just before you board your flight, as they have very handy booths at the Orly and Charles de Gaulle airports. You can even buy them online.
This exclusive gourmet store has various branches around the city, although perhaps the most emblematic one is in the Place de la Madeleine. It comprises a pastry shop, a bakery and a food department with the best cheeses, foie gras, caviar, cold meats and seafood, among other delicacies, in addition to cava, wine and champagne. You can also eat right there in the interior, or out on the terrace.
La Maison Plisson
In the République neighbourhood, this food store and restaurant with a terrace is ideal for the bobos (bourgeois, bohemian) of Paris. The decoration is as impeccable as the selection of French and European wares, with the accent on organic, craft produce.The owners have roamed the various regions of France in search of the best producers and conducted blind tastings to ensure they’re getting the finest wines. The premises house a butchery, pork butchery, fruiterer's, bakery and cheese section and, in the basement, wines and packaged foods.
These tea specialists carry over 500 tea varieties from the world over, some with suggestive names like Neige de Jade, White Himalaya or Dragon. Whether classic or rare, they are all excellent quality. Their passion for this beverage encompasses their whole universe, with offerings such as tea sets, and tea-scented incense or candles. Their establishment in Le Marais quarter is priceless – colonial in style and with refined service – although they have other shops across Paris.
The city’s oldest kitchenware store is a veritable culinary museum, with all kinds of pots, casseroles, frying pans, cocottes, pastry moulds and other cooking utensils. Particularly striking are the retro-style copper pots, although here you can find the most unexpected oddities, such as a duck press.
À la Mère de Famille
The oldest chocolate and sweet shop in Paris, founded in 1761 in the emblematic Montmartre, is a must-visit mecca for the sweet-toothed. Sweets, biscuits, macarons, candied fruit and a wide variety of enticing confectionery which you are advised to succumb to. They published a beautiful book which has a Spanish version by Lunwerg.
Text and photos by Isabel Loscertales of Gastronomistas.com
09 March, 2016