Delicacies and Delights

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Delicacies and Delights

Parisian foodies are flocking to the new location of Daniel Rose’s restaurant Spring, which opened this fall, but the American chef and his French girlfriend Marie-Aude Méry also have a niche boutique near the Louvre selling the kind of top-quality seasonal foodstuffs Rose uses in his cuisine—snails from Burgundy, outstanding charcuterie—Bellota, Bresaola and Basque porc noir—and the most divine-looking cheeses including creamy Robiola, Taupinette goat cheese and Corsican Fleur de Maquis. The new boutique épicerie, says Marie-Aude, who is now Rose’s co-chef, operates “in the spirit of a neighborhood grocery store”, so that local residents can drop in until 9 pm to pick up perfumed cooking oils and vinegars, sea salt from Noirmoutier and organic “slow food” staples such as haricots Soissons (large white beans from Soissons, north of Paris), petit épeautre (small spelt from Provence) and lentilles blondes (beige-brown lentils, a specialty of Saint-Flour, in the Auvergne). Daniel and Marie-Aude source all the boutique’s produce themselves, tracking down Philippe Mordelet’s homemade green tomato-and-verbena chutney in Toulouse, Edmond Fallot’s traditionally made mustards in Burgundy, and Rémy Vanbremeersch’s Miel de Paris considerably closer to home—the old-fashioned beekeeper has his hives in the city’s 20th arrondissement. Spring’s resident caviste Josh Adler has put together a brilliant selection of wines —principally French, focused on small producers, plenty of organic labels—which can be sampled at Thursday night’s lively tasting sessions 5–9 pm. 52 rue de l’Arbre Sec, 1st. 01.58.62.44.30

La Cantine de Quentin in the hip bobo area around the Canal Saint Martin, is a wildly popular cave à manger—think wine cellar-grocery store-restaurant. The foodie haven, created by two Guy Savoy-trained chefs Quentin Hoffmann and Johann Baron, has proved a huge hit with neighborhood residents and tourists alike, offering gourmet-minded folks the chance to lunch in front of floor-to-ceiling shelves stocked with a mouthwatering array of takeaway goodies. Fill a basket with honeys, jams, terrines, foie gras, fig vinegar and saucissons, or grab a bag of Quentin’s ultimate sweet-tooth treat: Sauternes-soaked chocolate-covered raisins. 52 rue Bichat, 10th, 01.42.02.40.32

At Petrossian, the chic caviar restaurant and emporium, if your budget doesn’t run to beluga, ossetra, sevruga or Alverta Royal, you can always treat yourself to a slice of czar-cut salmon or a portion of king crab. Or add a touch of gourmet bling to your next dinner party by sprinkling caviar ice on the starters or decorating your desserts with vodka chocolate pearls. 18 blvd de La Tour Maubourg, 7th, 01.44.11.32.22

Kitchen Essentials

Shopping for kitchen equipment in Paris is remarkably easy, since several of the city’s leading cookware stores are clustered around the old food market district of Les Halles. E. Dehillerin, revered by Americans as Julia Child’s favorite, caters to professional chefs but has also become a tourists’ culinary shrine in recent years, visited by casserole kooks and gadget geeks from the four corners of the world. The store’s dimly-lit nooks and crannies, which appear to have changed little since Dehillerin opened in 1820, harbor everything from sought-after Mauviel copper cookware to all manner of intriguing, specialized implements for slicing, shredding, sieving, whisking, coring and otherwise transforming mere food into French cuisine. 18–20 rue Coquillière, 1st, 01.42.36.53.11

La Bovida is a more upmarket and expensive home kitchenware boutique where the emphasis is firmly on the aesthetic. The tantalizing vitrines showcasing designer toasters, state-of-the-art food processors and miniature Le Creuset casseroles will have kitchen fanatics drooling before they get through the front door. The store’s three neatly organized floors are divided into sections devoted to wine (professional corkscrews, soda fountains and tasting glasses), baking (tart molds and silicone cake trays by Fauchon) and food preparation (an impressive selection of kitchen knives and cutting-edge pepper grinders). After lingering at the spice wall debating whether or not it was worth paying a little extra to have my piments d’Espelette packaged with the stylish La Bovida logo, I eventually walked away with a satisfying €2 gadget that fries eggs in square shapes—the perfect topper for a croque madame. 36 rue Montmartre, 1st, 01.42.36.09.99

Mora is a smaller specialist cookware store where amateur cake bakers can experience the added thrill of shopping alongside pastry chefs and professional chocolatiers. If you can tear yourself away from the gorgeous crêpe pans, the groovy-colored chopping boards and the covetable Staub cocottes by the door you’ll find the most amazing array of cake and chocolate molds hidden away out back. These include professional-quality cake pans and silicone trays to make typical French sweet treats including financiers, langues de chat and unforgettable madeleines. 13 rue Montmartre, 1st, 01.45.08.19.24

Don’t leave the area without dropping into Le Comptoir de la Gastronomie, a 19th-century épicerie with an Art Nouveau décor offering delicacies and delights from truffles, mi-cuit foie gras and moutarde aux cèpes to Calvados, Armagnac and champagne. Le Comptoir also serves a fine gourmet lunch for those in need of sustenance at the end of their foodie shopping trip. 34 rue Montmartre, 1st, 01.42.33.31.32

 

NOTEBOOK

Food Shop Classics

La Grande Epicerie 38 rue de Sèvres, 7th, 01.44.39.81.00

Fauchon 24–26 pl de la Madeleine, 8th, 01.70.39.38.00

Hédiard 21 pl de la Madeleine, 8th, 01.43.12.88.88

Printemps Luxe & Gourmandises Food Hall, 64 blvd Haussmann, 9th, 01.42.82.50.00

Galeries Lafayette Lafayette Gourmet, 40 blvd Haussmann, 9th, 01.42.82.34.56

 

Originally published in the May 2010 issue of France Today

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Comments

  • Sherry L. Brereton
    2010-09-08 20:09:37
    Sherry L. Brereton
    THX for the info on these shops - Do any of them maintain a website for online orders and shipment of products to the USA. Please advise.

    REPLY