May 28, 2014

It Was That Thing With Parisian Food Markets - Place d'Aligre

What's Cooking In Paris

or rather where... Last year I visited Paris and I wrote about the food markets there - click here to get to the old post. In Paris everything is expensive and I am again and again disappointed with the food - and then I realise/remember it is because I go to the super markets.

In Paris you need to stay away from the supermarket. In Paris you need to go to the local places, to the butcher, to the vegetable shop, to the cheese shop, to the local little chicken roastery. You don't go to the supermarket, you go to the little shops - as long as they are away from the touristy areas - and you go to the open markets, the farmer markets, and you buy what's in season. It is not much different from  any other country although here it is even more obvious, price wise.

Last time I wrote about Place d'Aligre, but since I didn't include a map, I thought I'd bring it up again.

Place d'Aligre and the food market, Marche d'Aligre, is not that easy to find, not at the first glance, and I had walked past it several times, without knowing it was actually there - well, not the actual indoor market, but the area where the market stands tend to be.

If you walk around Place d'Aligre in the late afternoon, you don't see much interesting going on, it is hard to believe that the area is full of food related shops - and that's why I missed it the first time I went; The shops open up early in the morning and close towards the afternoon, which means you have to go early or save it for a weekend. No wonder the Parisians use the less-than-interesting big supermarkets. But if you come early, you will find a symphony of flavours, smells, sounds and inspiration. Around Marche d'Aligre (the link takes you to a website with the opening hours etc) there will be market stands on the street, and vendors dealing with you; It is marvellous. 

This may not be the biggest market I have seen, but it is one of the oldest and it is genuinely good and very inspiring. There are few things I love more than going to the market to shop, and decide there and then, depending on what I find, what I cook. It requires a head full of ideas and some knowledge but this is where I get that from - take the time and listen and you will learn a lot. 

How to get there

Take the metro to Ledru-Rollin and walk from there. It is also possible to go to Gare de Lyon, but the walk will be a bit longer.
If you come on a Saturday there will be a lot going on, in every corner, weekdays are more quiet.

View AK-The Next Chapter - travel and tours in a larger map

Links

Marche d'Aligre website, full of great info - but mainly in French

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