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Paris grocery shopping - weird question, sort of.

Paris grocery shopping - weird question, sort of.

Old Sep 3rd, 2018, 05:00 AM
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Paris grocery shopping - weird question, sort of.

Hello everybody,

I'll be in Paris with a friend next week. I've been to Paris several times, for him it will be the first time.
Aside from the usual sightseeing, there is one special interest involved.
He is working in retail/groceries/supermarket and likes to "visit" usual and unusual places that sell foodstuff.
So the point is to see those place but not the actual need to buy foodstuff.

This can be the very ordinary supermarket (not Lidl or Aldi, or any hypermarché in the banlieue, though), department stores with somewhat "spectacular" food halls, or street markets or market halls (not so much the touristy ones which sell souvenirs and snacks).
So not the small shops that cater to certain food products, like a specialty store for mustard or seafood.

Since none of the above is on my usual list of sights (I'm happy that one cannot visit Rungis), I would not know more than taking him to any Monoprix to tick the box for a regular supermarket. Or is there something better or more "normal"?

With regard to upscale food shopping I'm a bit lost.. if money was not much of an issue would any of the bigger department stores be where the affluent Parisians shop for groceries and foodstuff in general?
Any street markets to recommend? Or any other type of establishment I might not even think of?

Thanks for any kind of input...
Getting tickets to Versailles was easy in comparison.
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Old Sep 3rd, 2018, 05:06 AM
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https://www.lagrandeepicerie.com/en/index

Sensational!
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Old Sep 3rd, 2018, 05:34 AM
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The Grande Epicerie at the Bon Marché is considered to be the main large showplace for food, along with Lafayette Gourmet. For smaller spectacular presentations, you might want to drop into Fauchon.

Actually, you can visit Rungis by guided tour for about 80 euros. The buses leave from Denfert-Rochereau at 4:30 a.m. I took the tour once and it was quite spectacular.

The Rungis market | Any Port in a Storm
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Old Sep 3rd, 2018, 05:39 AM
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Wow.. thanks!
La Grande Epicerie it will be.

And I was afraid that one can visit Rungis as I was expecting that un-godly hour of departure.
But since we are staying just 200 meters from Denfert-Rochereau, I will take a look at it.. sigh..
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Old Sep 3rd, 2018, 06:10 AM
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Rungis was a must for me. Yes, woken up early but this is really something for somebody working in the stuff. Markets are always great -seems to be an attraction of itself for US tourists, when we take it for granted.
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Old Sep 3rd, 2018, 06:44 AM
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Unfortunately / fortunately, there is just one ticket left for the visit on the 14th - the only date we would be able to do it.
So no early rise this time...
But I must admit that the tour looks very interesting in kerouac's pictures
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Old Sep 3rd, 2018, 07:21 AM
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I hit Picard if I have an oven or microwave in Paris. I think their store is unusual so a person in the grocery business might enjoy. The food is very good btw.
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Old Sep 3rd, 2018, 07:23 AM
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Interesting - thank you very much.
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Old Sep 3rd, 2018, 07:27 AM
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I agree that Picard is a very interesting experience for people who want to see the amazing things that are available in frozen foods. There are more than 100 locations in Paris.

Vos magasins Picard Paris - Ventes de produits surgelés Paris
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Old Sep 3rd, 2018, 07:57 AM
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>>Unfortunately / fortunately, there is just one ticket left for the visit on the 14th - the only date we would be able to do it.
So no early rise this time...<<

generously allow your friend to take the final ticket -- you can have a lie in til a civilized hour and he can see the amazing place - best of both worlds
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Old Sep 3rd, 2018, 08:27 AM
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I think that if one ticket is left, it should be possible to wangle a second one. There are always no-shows for things like that because, hey -- 4:30 a.m.! Not everybody manages to arrive.

It might be useful to know that the Café Oz just a step from where the buses are (which is actually the bus stop for the Orlybus, which is not running that early) is open until 5 a.m. so it makes an excellent refuge for people waiting.
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Old Sep 3rd, 2018, 08:49 AM
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I can't comment on whether it is still good, as I visited way back in 1999 when it was fairly unique. First time I discovered that you could actually have an olive oil tasting

https://www.oliviersandco.com/content/about/our-story
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Old Sep 3rd, 2018, 09:58 AM
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Go to the Belleville market if you want some dichotomy.
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Old Sep 3rd, 2018, 10:14 AM
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Or the Barbès market!
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Old Sep 3rd, 2018, 10:51 AM
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And if going to the Belleville market, The Paris Store (Asian) at the N end of the Belleville market at the junction of rue Belleville and the junctions of Blvd de Belleville and Blvd. de la Villette might be an interesting stop.
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Old Sep 3rd, 2018, 11:27 AM
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My Paris Store is on rue de l'Evangile in the 18th but the original is right next to Tang Frères in the 13th.

https://www.paris-store.com/

Tang Frères - Supermarchés asiatiques depuis 1976

Tang Frères (of Laotian origin) is the biggest Asian importer to France (and apparently the largest customer of Air France Cargo). However, Paris Store is the chain that has spread into the greatest number of cities throughout France.
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Old Sep 3rd, 2018, 03:54 PM
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Thanks! What a wealth of options!
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Old Sep 3rd, 2018, 08:47 PM
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One of my main supermarkets for years has been https://www.lagrandeepicerie.com/en/index. One of my best Parisian friends and I go there and get deli food and relax and eat at the park across the street. There are also some products that I can find there that I can't find in other supermarkets when I'm preparing meals.

We also go to Picard.

Happy Travels!
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Old Sep 3rd, 2018, 10:20 PM
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I remember a trip report that somebody write after shopping at the Grande Epicerie. One of the lines was "I didn't realise that pineapples were so expensive in Europe. We paid 13 euros!" Well, actually in a normal place, a pineapple costs about 2 euros, so that should give you an idea of the prices in that place. I would not ever buy anything there, but it's nice to look at.
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Old Sep 4th, 2018, 08:23 AM
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Go to the rue Poncelet also, if upscale is what you're looking for.

We can eat really good, entire meals here in the Périgord for what a few pieces of fruit cost at La Grande Epicerie. Yes, it's a showcase and worth it for the drama, but not someplace I'd actually buy food.

If you're looking for the opposite, get off the métro at Gambetta and wander around all the ethnic shops between there and the Canal St-Martin.

We have a Tang-Frères in Périgueux now. We LOOOOOVE that place!
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