Flavors of Paris Gastronomy Tour – 2
Première Pression Provence – 8 Cour du Commerce Saint-André
Olive oils, tapenades and herbs. Oh My! I didn’t know if I was in a science lab, test kitchen or a retail store. Turns out all of the above! It’s a space of excitement, discovery and usability, with tastes and aromas that are unexpected.
I received a serious olive oil education there. Ready? Independent Artisanal Olive Oil Producers exclusively from France supply the store with their “gold wine”. The nature of the soil, the age and size of the tree are très importants, as are altitude, exposure and irrigation of the orchards. But the treatment, storage and conditioning oils make the difference between a good oil and a great vintage. You can read about all the ‘real people’ who produce these oils in booklets that are given to you at the store. Examples of oil descriptions: Notes of almonds, berries, butter. Notes of cocoa, mushroom, candied fruit, vanilla. Is this olive oil? Oui, and from France!
Voilà, now let’s taste! One wall literally has large clear glass cylinders in a wooden case full of ten different Artisanal Olive Oils, appearing like beakers in a lab. You can taste them and fill up different sized glass bottles to take home! I tasted all of them of course and I was blown away! But that’s not all, there’s more to taste. I ended up purchasing five different kinds. But my favorite was the truffle! There’s also at least three tables filled with jars of different kinds of tapenades to taste as well. I took home jars of truffle (bien sûr), and fig chutney.
I can’t even write enough to do this shop justice, so just trust me! Everyone needs a good variety of olive oils and tapenades so just go check it out. You will come out happy and well educated – I know I was!
Suitable for all types of diets and health conscious people.
La pâtisserie Gérard Mulot – 76, rue de Seine et 2, rue Lobineau
Oh La La ! Macarons, miroir des elfes, tarte au citron, millefeuille, fraisier and so much more! For those that don’t know these names in French, they are serious dessert masterpieces! The kind that you stare at for about 30 minutes trying to figure out where to take your first bite. Then once you’ve decided, you still can’t bring yourself to cut it! Talk about ’eye candy’, it really is something to behold in person. They also make sorbets, chocolates, savory pastries and breads! Opening first in 1975, they are known for their seasonal flavors of macarons as well as their stunning pastries. Clearly vegans and lactose-intolerant people will have to ask for suggestions, but for the rest of you, bring extra euros; you’re going to need them! In saying that, there are plenty of fruit tarts and other things to choose from. I dare anyone to try to walk by the windows here and not go in. I stood in front of the display cases for at least twenty minutes wishing I could just crawl in. I think my gastro-guide Lisa Rankin was starting to worry about me! But I was entranced by the sheer genius of design and presentation of their goodies. This is a pastry lover’s paradise! Absolutely BE-YOND!
Bacchus and Ariane – 4 rue Lobineau
Vin ? Oui ! Vin Rouge ? Oui, s’il vous plaît ! And of course there are many other types of wine here as well. This is a small but well stocked wine boutique, located in the covered market at the heart of Saint Germain des Prés. This boutique offers a wide range of wines from all the territories of France, with a special focus on the region of Burgundy. I’m personally a fan of the Rhône region, but you can find a new favorite of your own here. The staff are extremely knowledgeable and they were quite impressed with me when I made a straight line for a certain bottle of “Châteauneuf du Pape” on the shelf to enjoy that evening with friends!
You don’t like wine? Are you feeling ok? Just kidding, wine is the perfect gift for everyone and every occasion. So stop in and stock up for yourself and others.
Let me just say that I could honestly write one full article on each of these places. However I am limited in my word count, so I would like to take an “appreciation bow” in front of all the shops. It was an amazing experience of pure gastronomic pleasure! And a special merci to Lisa Rankin of “Flavors of Paris Food Tours” and “My French Life” online magazine for the unforgettable day! Below are the links to the websites for some of the places that I didn’t write about which you should still check out, they deserve it! Santé!
Merci Lisa Rankin.
You can read Flavors of Paris Gastronomy Tour – 1Image credits:
1. Première Pression Provence.