14 foods to try in Paris

14 foods to try in Paris

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One of my favorite parts of traveling is exploring a new place through its food. Food always has something to say about the place, the people, the traditions and even historical events. When you think of Paris, a lot of classic food comes to mind: baguettes, cheese (delicious cheese!), macarons (from Ladurée or Pierre Hermé, of course), crêpes, pain au chocolat, croissants, crème brûlée…

But there are so much more foods to try in Paris than that! That’s why we created this list of all the foods you can’t miss on your next visit to the City of Lights. And what’s best, we also suggest where you can get said foods.

Croque Monsieur/Croque Madame

Marcel Proust mentions it in In Search of Lost Time. The English translation would be something like mister crunch which is an amazing name. This is basically a sandwich with ham and melted cheese on top of it. If you want a fried egg on top of it, then ask for a Croque Madame. This is a quick snack that’s served mostly in bars and cafés.  Have the best Croque Monsieur in Paris in Le Petit Cler.

Paris-Brest

The Paris-Brest was created by Louis Durant in 1910 to commemorate the Paris-Brest-Paris bicycle race. This delicious dessert is made of choux pastry and praline flavored cream. It has the form of a wheel and it was popular with riders of the race because it has a high caloric value. Chez Michel has one of the best in town.

Chocolate and pistachio escargot

Maybe you don’t like the idea of escargots but what about this sweet chocolate and pistachio one? It’s delicious. Your mouth will water just by looking at them: pistachio paste in between puff pastry with chocolate sprinkles. OMG. Try the best one where it was created, at Du Pain et des Idées.

Falafel

One of the best foods to try in Paris! Go to L’As du Fallafel. You’ll know you’re close because you’ll see lines of people waiting in the street for their falafels to be served. You can either eat there or have them to go (which is better since you can walk around Le Marais with food in your hands). It’s said to be Lenny Kravitz’s favorite restaurant and we trust his judgment.

Éclair

An éclair is just a pastry made with choux dough and filled with cream topped with chocolate… but there’s something in that “simplicity” that makes eating one of those a truly flavorful experience. Of course, there are now different versions of the éclair and you can find the best ones in L’éclaire de Génie.

Oysters

There’s a legend that says King Henri IV ate 300 oysters at a time, Napoleon ate them before going into the battle. Oysters have a long history in France (they’re the biggest consumers in Europe). There are two places you can have amazing oysters and feel like a local. Go to Le Mary Celeste for a selection of oysters and nice drinks. Choose Huîtrerie Régis if you want a small intimate space outside of the tourist areas.

Profiteroles

Profiteroles or choux à la crème are choux pastry balls with a filling that can be whipped cream, custard, pastry cream, or ice cream. If you have them when they’re freshly baked they kind of melt in your mouth: an experience that can’t be topped. For the most delicious profiteroles you’ll have in Paris, go to Profiterole Chérie, a pink paradise in which you can choose your kind of profiterole and personalize the filling.

Basquiat Pizza

You can only have this at Pink Flamingo. Don’t miss the chance to taste this delicious pizza with gorgonzola, figs, and parsley. For a better experience, go to the one that’s near Canal Saint-Martin. When you order, they’ll give you a pink balloon so you can sit around the Canal meanwhile they’re preparing it. Once it’s done, the waiters will find your pink balloon and deliver the pizza to you.

Sole Meuniére

Sole à la meunière is a classic! It is sole dredged in flour, pan-fried in butter and served with a brown butter sauce, parsley and lemon. Ok, my mouth just watered while writing that. It’s so simple yet so delicious! For a great sole meunière go to Chez Georges. It may be a bit pricey but it’s worth it!

Praslines

Praslines are roasted caramelized almonds. Although it may sound simple, the recipe has been kept secret since its invention during the 17th century. Nobody knows the exact quantity of sugar or for how long you have to roast the almonds. The only place where you can have the authentic ones is at Mazet de Montargis. And while you’re there, you can also try all the variety of candies this magical place has to offer!

Tentation de Saint-Antoine

An Anthony Bourdain favorite. Have this greasy, amazing meal at Au Pied de Cochon. But what exactly does the Tentation de Saint-Antoine is? Well, readers here’s a photo:

Enjoy tail, ear, snout and a pig’s foot with Bérnaise sauce. And if you’re already at this amazing 24-hour-service restaurant, try the French onion soup. This is definitely one of our favorite foods to try in Paris!

Escargots

You may be skeptical at first but when in Paris… you have to try them! Escargots are typically cooked with garlic butter, chicken stock or wine. L’Escargot Montorgueil has the best escargots in town. Order a dozen per person (you won’t regret it) and try to seat near a window. The restaurant is located in a busy area of Paris so you’ll love eating your escargots while watching people passing by.

Frog legs

If I had to explain how do frog legs taste, I’d say that it’s a weird mix between chicken and fish. You have the mild flavor of chicken and some of the texture of fish. A fun fact about cooking them: when you cook frog legs they tend to twitch. Luckily, you can go to places like Roger La Grenouille where you don’t have to see that. Order Grenouille à la persillade.

 

Coq au vin

If you’re a fan of Julia Child, you already know this dish. Coq au vin a classic French dish: chicken braised with wine, mushrooms, lardons and, sometimes, garlic. If you’re into wine, this one’s for you. They usually cook it with red Burgundy wine but if you go to other places in France there may be variants with local wines (like coq au Champagne, for example). Go to A la Biche au Bois for a truly French coq au vin.

 

Don’t miss the chance to experience Paris through its food. Let us know if you have any suggestions, we’d love to hear from you!

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