A Foodie's Guide to Paris

Written by Erica Paredes

Aside from hanging out with locals, the best and easiest way to get to know a new city is through their food. When visiting a new place, especially one as renowned for food as Paris, direct yourself to the nearest bistro and order a moderately priced but delicious meal every time you think of going to a fast food chain.

Many may use the excuse that they don't know where to go or what to expect, but this unfamiliarity is actually the most exciting part of it all. If it makes you more confident and comfortable in your Paris foodie adventure, do your research in advance to make yourself familiar with the names of dishes that sound interesting to you. Here are a few tips for foodies visiting the City of Light.

  • Visit the weekend food markets - There's no better way to taste and sample the many foodie delights that France has to offer than from their weekend food markets. If your accommodations include a kitchen, this is your chance to go crazy and bring things home to cook on your own. Research on a recipe you would like to try, or a type of food you'd like to sample before going, and you will most likely find what you are looking for here.
  • Sample the street food - The most famous of Paris street food is the crepe, akin to a very thin pancake a stuffed with sweet or savory ingredients. You can eat this anytime of the day, but the best combination is banana and Nutella. If you are into more savory food, try a galette, which is essentially still a crepe but made with buckwheat flour and filled with anything savory under the sun. Try a ham, mushroom and cheese galette for an instant, filling meal!
  • Take a cooking class - If you want to get to know the ins and outs of Paris markets and produce, then a cooking class is the way to go. You'll have a guided tour of where to get the best ingredients and a few hours in a Parisian kitchen learning a few authentic French dishes to add to your kitchen repertoire.
  • Visit a cheese shop - If you want to sample one of the things France is most famous for- it's cheese, then head over to the closest "La Fromagerie" to make your taste buds happy. Another option would be to take a wine and cheese appreciation class so you can learn about the different types of cheese France has to offer, and what wine would work best with it. A great way to know what you'll need for your next wine and cheese gathering.
  • Take a food tour - If you want to know where to eat in Paris, without having to go through trial and error, a guided food tour might be the best option for you. A local foodie can take you to the best places to go for croissants, for a cocktail, for the best macarons and whatever else you fancy eating.
  • Say Yes to an invitation - If a Paris local invites you over for a meal in his or her home, say yes! This is the perfect way to eat like a true Parisian and see what a typical meal is like for them.


Dr. Jean-Michel Cohen
is the founder of The Parisian Diet, which is about the pleasure of eating and being able to eat all types of food.

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