Saturday, January 21, 2017

On a Parisian street that’s been in use for approximately 2,000 years, you’ll find dozens of boucheries, boulangeries, fromageries, pâtisseriespoissonneries and just about any other kind of -erie shop relating to food.

Arriving from the Right Bank in Paris, you’ll find the narrow cobblestone street of Rue Mouffetard as it snakes its way downhill to a small plaza and an outdoor fruit and veggie market. Much of this small street is closed to traffic, so you’re free to leisurely stroll from the butcher to the baker to the pastry maker (sorry, no candlestick makers here). Lining this foodie street are several cafés and plenty of shops to buy the fixings for a wonderful French picnic or a delicious dinner.

As my fellow foodie friend showed me Rue Mouffetard for the first-time last summer, I wondered, how had I missed this fabulous foodie street? The delightful thing is that Paris is filled with sooo many good places to eat. Every visit, I come armed with a new list of places I want to dine at in the City of Lights.
 I can't resist French cheese!
Even Ernest Hemingway described it as a “wonderful, narrow crowded market street” in “A Moveable Feast.” 
But the Romans opened the road some 2,000 years ago to connect Antic Lutetia (what officially became Paris in 360 AD) to Italy via a southern road. The street ran through the small village of Bourg Saint-Médard that became the home of winegrowers and wealthy Parisians’ country houses as it was located on a sunny hill. In the 14th century, the area became undesirable as the butchers, skinners and tanners workshops appeared on the river banks. They dumped their waste into the river turning it into a stinking sewer. The offending odours produced were commonly called moffettes so the street became known as Rue des Moffettes eventually evolved into Rue Mouffetard.

Fortunately, the only butchers you’ll find here now are ones selling delicious types of saucissons and fresh meat if you fancy a homecooked meal.
The prime time for visiting is Saturday and Sunday morning. Remember: everything is closed by Sunday afternoon and remains closed until Tuesday morning. My visits were on a Wednesday and on a Saturday in the summer, with the weekend being the busiest.

Besides gazing into all the shops with food envy, my friends and I decided to grab the fixings for a picnic. We went from shop to shop buying different bits of cheese, bread, wine (that came with disposable glasses), macarons, pastries and just about anything edible. It’s difficult not to buy one of everything!
My girlfriend and I settled down on a picnic bench in a small park next to the 15th-century St. Medard church. Or if you are willing to walk a couple minutes farther – the Jardin des Plantes, next to the Natural History Museum, is a gorgeous oasis for a picnic. The French cops didn’t seem to mind that we were drinking wine in the park. How tres French!
A picnic for two in Paris! 
Or for five!
Good friends and picnics in Paris are a match made in heaven! ;)
As you can see from my photos if you want a one-stop foodie shopping experience, then head to Rue Mouffetard when you visit Paris. I know I’ll be heading back here again…and hopefully soon!
My Traveling Joys

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Unknown said...

Want to go to Paris so badly now! Although the weather may not be best for picnics yet! This street sounds wonderful, reminds me a bit of the old town in Krakow x

Katy said...

Off to Paris in a couple of weeks for Mother's Day and to start my kids journey on a life long love affair with the city. Will take a stroll down Rue Mouffetard for sure!