01 Dec2014


If I died and was reincarnated as a cockroach, I would ask to be assigned to this “grocery”… :) Minutes after settling in to our small but wonderful flat in Paris, the sun had set and we knew we had to venture out to the nearest “grocery” to stock our empty fridge. The first day after a long plane ride is always discombobulating and combined with the jet lag, you never know when you are going to be sleepy or famished or both, so it’s best to be prepared…


La Grande Épicerié is one of the most amazing “groceries” I have ever been to, and it was just a five minute walk from our place. After spending a few minutes browsing (and I took no photos indoors as the last time I was curtly asked NOT TO by grocery security), we decided to get two kinds of pate (a country or campagne and some duck pate), some Poilane bread, some sliced ham, three kinds of pre-washed lettuce, a bottle of salad dressing, some cheese and fruit. Closer to home, from the corner “sari-sari store” we loaded up on water and sodas. I had had my heart set on a foie gras sandwich like this one I had the last time I was in that grocery, but they where nowhere to be found. Bummer.


For dinner at say 6pm, I had a half of a thick slice of both pates, a huge salad, bread and some cheese. We really should have had some wine with this, but I forgot to buy a bottle. This “meal” totally hit the spot, a taste of Paris, fast! And after a brief attempt to put stuff away, I was snoring and in a deep, deep slumber…


Meanwhile, a side lesson in lettuce, some ready to eat supposedly washed and dried lettuce, from the grocery — here some hearts of frisee, a type of endive that is crunchy, slightly bitter and wonderful on the palate, one of my favorites!


And here, some lamb’s lettuce or mache, which is soft and gentle and provided an altogether different mouthfeel and flavor. We also had a pack of mixed greens that I didn’t bother to take a photo of.


Jet lag had me rising at 3am, (almost lunch time in Manila) and my stomach was growling again. So in the wee hours of the morning, I had some ham, cheese, bread and a salad with some slices of golden apples with the most amazing pre-packaged salad dressing from Maille. If I could have brought back a case of that stuff, I would have. I don’t usually buy pre-packaged dressings, but to minimize bottles and such we did — and I was sopping up leftover dressing on my plate with the bread. It had been less than 12 hours since we settled into the flat, and we had had four meals between us at an average cost of roughly Euro4-5 per person, not bad eh?



  1. Dragon says:


    Your French trip would certainly be a gastronomic, epicurean experience…

    Dec 1, 2014 | 10:00 pm


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  3. scott says:

    I like how you roll MM! the midnight err 3am snack sounds the best!

    Dec 2, 2014 | 3:26 am

  4. Anna Banana says:

    I love this and your earlier post about the airbnb flat! airbnb-rented flat plus grocery = living like a Parisian even for just a couple of days! My brother and I did the same in Paris for a week a couple of months ago and I loved the experience (and the savings haha!)

    Dec 2, 2014 | 3:58 am

  5. Caesar says:

    Don’t forget to buy the Christine Ferber confitures and les Beurre Bordier (if you want, I’ll give you tips on how to pack those yummy butters) at the La Grande Épicerie. Must visit G. Detou (58, rue Tiquetonne 75002) and l’Epicerie Bruno (30, rue Tiquetonne).

    Dec 2, 2014 | 8:05 am

  6. millet says:


    Dec 2, 2014 | 8:44 am

  7. ami says:

    Oddly enough, my dream last night was that I was in a grocery in a foreign land. I couldn’t tell for sure which country though but I did buy roquefort cheese in my dream so maybe somewhere in France too?

    Dec 2, 2014 | 8:50 am

  8. Betchay says:

    Your 3am “snack” looks so yummy!

    2nd photo reminded me of a great photography tip: best to do your cityscape photos right before dusk and you will get the bluest sky!

    Dec 2, 2014 | 2:21 pm

  9. Joe Bariring says:

    My wife and I just visited Paris for the first time over a month ago and I swear the heck I knew where to get decent dinner other than at McDonald’s. Everytime we came back from a city tour and wanted to eat at a restaurant before going back to our hotel it was always closed serving dinner although patrons were still abound drinking at tables. Is it customary in Paris not to serve dinner after six because thereafter is set aside for drinking? We both fell in love with Paris inspite of and planning on visiting again. A tip or two would be greatly appreciated.

    Dec 3, 2014 | 3:27 am

  10. Dr Nick says:

    Not a vegetarian, but think foie gras is really wrong and essentially amounts to the worst animal torture ever. Fortunately it’s increasingly frowned upon in places outside France…

    Dec 6, 2014 | 2:07 am

  11. Marketman says:

    Dr. Nick, I understand the controversy, but personally choose to eat foie gras. I eat farmed fish, farmed chickens, cows, sheep, farmed caviar, etc. and most are subjected to the cruelty of death to feed me.

    But to be more specific, perhaps these points by Ariane Daguin, of D’Artagnan fame, clarifies some potential misconceptions about force-feeding and the raising of foie gras. In addition, not ALL foie is from force fed birds, some are from birds that are finished with the “preparation” to migrate and thus have fatter livers (though one can argue its mean to kill those as well.

    It probably deserves a much longer discussion, but it’s interesting to note that some cities like Chicago that banned foie gras consumption in the U.S. have actually reversed themselves in recent years. And California is the only state that has kept their ban so far. And for vegetarians, I guess, I would pose the question about the potential ethical problem with killing any living thing. Just because vegetables and fruits don’t have a brain in the “classic sense” doesn’t mean they aren’t screaming in agony when we chew on them along with a little bit of salad dressing.

    Dec 6, 2014 | 1:53 pm


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