The Paris Foodie Guide
Oh the many culinary delights of Paris, from goose fat fried potatoes to sole meuniere to the simple pleasures of an almond croissant. It seems like there’s a Michelin starred joint on every corner, and an equally wonderful cheese shop or bakery to back it up. Here, our favorites of Paris’ gastro treasures. Image courtesy of @parisinfourmonths
Herboristerie11 Rue Petits Champs, 1st | +22.214.171.124.54.68
For 40 years, Michel Pierre has transformed medicinal plants into herbal infusions, nutritional supplements, essential oils, and cosmetics. The staff will prescribe based on your ailments, though there's plenty of lovely stuff here that more preventative then curative. It's by appointment.
Le Bon Marché22 Rue de Sèvres, 7th | +126.96.36.199.80.00
Though it's often (mistakenly) credited as being the first department store, there's no doubt that Le Bon Marché's founders, Aristide and Marguerite Boucicaut, were pioneers, particularly in a culture that so adamantly prizes specialty stores. Launched in 1838 as an extension of the Boucicaut's single market stall, it became a fixed-price department store in 1850 (before that, you would barter), moving into its sweeping, Art Deco home in 1867. While it's been expanded several times since (and now belongs to LVMH), it's still inarguably one of the most beautiful, large-scale shops in existence. Whether you're looking for Chanel, Louis Vuitton, Maje, or Iro, it's likely here: Along with lingerie, kids clothing, furniture, household essentials, and shoes and bags. The food hall, La Grande Épicerie, is pretty insane, offering an embarrassingly rich array of specialty products, from Fauchon macarons to Baltic smoked fish. Many visitors concentrate their buying power here in order to hit the spending level required for VAT.
Astier de Villatte173 Rue St. Honoré, 1st | +188.8.131.52.74.13
Though it's well located on rue Saint-Honoré, this is the sort of spot that's easy to walk right by: There's not really even a sign, and inside it's hushed, dimly lit, cloister-like, and achingly cool, complete with rickety, slightly off-kilter shelves that literally sag under the weight of Astier de Villatte's ceramic tableware. Made from black terra-cotta clay and then finished in the brand's signature milky white, these perfectly imperfect dishes are the hallmark of some of the best-dressed tables we know. You'll also find the house line of geometric-print, gold-rimmed notebooks (made by the last master printer in Paris) and the gorgeously old-fashioned candle and incense collections, along with a handful of oddities, like glassware cast in the shape of skulls and stout little teapots.
E. Dehillerin18-20 Rue Coquillière, 1st | +184.108.40.206.54.80
Since 1820, E. Dehillerin has been outfitting the kitchens of Paris with copper pots, paring knives, whisks—and a million other ingenious gadgets nobody ever knew they needed. It is a huge store and an incredible resource, though come with full pockets (and plenty of room in your suitcase). They also sell online and ship globally.
Poissonnerie du Dôme4 Rue Delambre, 14th | +220.127.116.11.23.95
Dotted with truly beautiful fish murals—all hand-painted on tile—this is one of those family-owned businesses where it's clear they hold a deep respect for what they do. And at this 30-year-old poisonnerie, they do the freshest fish in Paris. When we visited, they were offering beautiful jumbo crab claws along with a variety of in-season whole fish and fillets.
Marché d’AligreRue d'Aligre, 12th | +18.104.22.168.34.26
Occupying an old-world, village-like square, this market near the Bastille bustles with locals stocking up on their weekly groceries. When you need to catch your breath, head to Le Baron Rouge, a great wine bar just around the corner.
Pierre HerméGaleries Lafayette, 40 Boulevard Haussmann, 9th | +22.214.171.124.47.77
Parisians swear Pierre Hermé's macarons are the best in town, and we're inclined to agree. After all, the pastry wunderkind (he began his career as an apprentice to Gaston Lenôtre at the age of 14, before becoming the pastry chef of Fauchon when he was only 24) is known for infusing his ganaches with interesting (and foolproof) combinations, like his famous Ispahan, which blends rose, lychee, and raspberry. The chocolates shouldn't be missed either, and neither should the croissants.
La Ferme Saint Hubert36 Rue de Rochechouart, 9th | +126.96.36.199.15.77
The variegated marble walls, cow figurines, mosaic tile floor, and checkered apron staff sure are charming—but it's all totally unnecessary, too, as we'd happily visit a broom closet for the cheeses here. Sitting on top of a hilly street in the 9th, you'll find a country's worth of varieties—both stinky and delicate—and the know-how behind the counter to point you to something you're going to love. For those who are just passing through, they can vacuum pack fragile cheeses for travel.
Marché Saxe-BreteuilAvenue de Saxe, 7th | +33.1.4511.7111
With the Eiffel Tower as a stunning backdrop, this market focuses on produce and fresh seafood. There are also stands for escargots, meat, eggs, and a smattering of home goods. Photo credit: Natalia Lopes
Barthélémy51 Rue de Grenelle, 7th | +188.8.131.52.82.24
Literally packed to the rafters with cheese, this is one of those tiny little spots you'll smell before you see. Owner Nicole Barthélemy and her team of cheese mongers will always let you sample before you buy—though the recommendations tend to be so spot-on, you arguably won't have to test many. For whatever reason, they don't tolerate photos in the shop—should you whip out your camera, you'll get scolded.
Marché RaspailBoulevard Raspail, between Rue du Cherche-Midi & Rue de Rennes, 6th | +33.6.0843.9023
With more than 150 stalls, this is one of the largest open-air markets in Europe, and one any food lover will not want to miss. Beyond fresh veggies, fruits, eggs, and cheese, there are plenty of vendors who sell premade meals, perfect for an impromptu picnic. It happens three times a week. Photo credit: Neil Conway
Marché MongePlace Monge, 5th | +184.108.40.206.93.30
Complete with cobblestone streets, a bubbling fountain, stands full of fresh flowers, and heaps of fresh bread, cheese, and charcuterie, Marché Monge is pretty much the quintessential Parisian market. Jardin des Plantes is only a few blocks away, so it's a great pit stop before an afternoon of picnicking.
Marché des Enfants Rouges39 Rue de Bretagne, 3rd | +220.127.116.11.20.40
At 400 years old, the Marais-based Marché des Enfants Rouges is worth browsing whether you're hungry or not (you can always stock up on fresh-cut flowers, ephemera, and larder-worthy oils and preserves). But bring an appetite—you'll find a seemingly endless sprawl of food vendors hawking everything from tagines to crepes to hearty sandwiches. Our pick: Chez Taeko's stand, which serves delicious, authentic Japanese fare.
Pascal Beillevaire77 Rue St. Antoine, 4th | +18.104.22.168.48.78
The farm behind this mini-chainlet is located in the Loire valley, where they make a range of unpasteurized cheeses, butters, yogurts, and crème fraîches from scratch—while aging the cheeses of area farmers. The demi-sel croquant unpasteurized butter is crazy delicious, and portable, as they're happy to vacuum pack it for the plane.
Goumanyat3 Rue Charles-François Dupuis, 3rd | +22.214.171.124.05.66
For more than 200 years, Goumanyat has been a go-to spot for Parisian chefs looking for hard-to-find ingredients and spices. They specialize in saffron, which is stored in huge glass jars behind the counter, and grown on their farm in Iran. They’re located in a fittingly historic space that was formerly an apothecary, but they keep very irregular hours, so it’s best to call ahead before you drop by.
Izraël30 Rue François Miron, 4th | +126.96.36.199.66.23
You could spend hours in this exotic shop, where the walls are lined with imported spices and other ingredients and large sacks filled with lentils, rice, and other staples dot the floor. Owned and operated by the same couple for many years, it’s become somewhat of an institution. Photograph by Marshall Segal
Épices Roellinger51 Bis Rue Sainte Anne, 2nd | +188.8.131.52.46.88
A rolling ladder and packed floor-to-ceiling shelves underscore the library-like nature of this storied spice shop: Here, you'll find an encyclopedia worth of salts and peppers, mustards, chutneys, infused oils, and any number of exotic spices. The main draw, though, are the Roellinger house mixes, like the Mauritius-inspired Poudre d'Or, which combines coriander, turmeric, West Indian bay, and unripe mango powder. Since no cookbook calls for this specific mixture, they make pairing suggestions (oysters and shellfish), and even offer links to recipes for those of us who are easily intimidated chefs.