The Paris Markets: Shopping in Vegetable Heaven on Earth

The Best Paris Marche’s are well known by all the travel experts as they focus mainly on the central Paris area; the outlying areas of Paris are not frequented by tourists so they offer you the “real” experience of shopping with the locals. NEUILLY, which is outside of Paris in a nearby zip code and LE GARENNE de COLOMBE also a few stops away from the end of Line 1 at LE DEFENSE and you take the T2 Tramway and stop at the town. The Marche starts early on Saturday and is located directly next to the church in the town square. Here I discovered some delightful treats from handmade pasta to beautiful meats and fish and of course, the Ultimate French Vegetable the crowning glory of France.  What makes a French chef so important to the world (aside from their talents and skills) is that they remind us of the glories of food from simple to complex that comes straight from the growers. In recent years this has become a ‘food trend’ that has swept the US restaurant world. Now the rooftops of New York are gardens where chefs grow their own “local” produce so that they can bring it to the table so that things are brought in daily fresh from their gardens*.

*(A note of credit to Alice Waters who brought this entire concept to the US, after Julia Childs taught Americans how to cook “like a French Housewife”) which was a public television show and cookbook.  My mother was an early follower).

The NEUILLY area markets on Saturday and Wednesday and are also very good in the vegetable category. This market is off the Line 1 Metro stop “Porte Maillot” and you must cross a busy parkway at the Palais de Congres. Then,  simply head to the center of town on the Avenue Charles de Gaulle, or the Rue Midi and just ask  “Pardon,  ou est le Marche?”  This market is also a great place to shop for clothes, housewares,  jewelry, gifts, and luxury cashmere sweaters. Either market is as good or better than a central Paris market. Prices are a bit lower and the quality is delicious, each vegetable perfect for a magazine shoot or your table.

On your next trip to France let us book you a market day and you can experience it for yourself with one of our local partners and tour guides.   Photographers can also come along and give you a set of photos from your day too!

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