Top Things to Eat in Paris: 10 Must-Try French Delicacies

Top Things to Eat in Paris

1. Croissants

Croissants are a quintessential French pastry popular in Parisian bistros, known for their flaky texture and rich buttery taste. Originating in France, these pastries have become an iconic symbol of French cuisine, enjoyed by locals and tourists alike. Typically consumed for breakfast or as a snack, croissants can also be found filled with delectable options like chocolate, almond paste, or other sweet fillings.

When strolling through the streets of Paris, indulging in a freshly baked croissant from one of the city’s charming cafes is an experience not to be missed. Whether paired with a steaming cup of coffee at a cozy bistro or savored during a leisurely picnic near famous landmarks like Sacré-Cœur or along the Seine River, croissants offer a delightful culinary journey through Parisian flavors.

For those seeking an authentic taste of Parisian cuisine, renowned restaurants such as Ladurée provide exceptional croissants that showcase the expertise of skilled chefs dedicated to preserving traditional recipes while adding modern twists to classic dishes. In every bite of this beloved French dessert lies centuries-old craftsmanship combined with contemporary flair – truly embodying the essence of dining in Paris.

2. Baguette

The crusty baguette is an iconic long French bread that holds a significant place in French cuisine. It serves as a versatile option, perfect for creating delicious sandwiches or pairing with cheese and wine at bistros.

Baguettes are often enjoyed fresh from the bakery, offering a delightful crunch on the outside while maintaining softness inside. The simplicity of this bread makes it an ideal choice for various occasions, whether as part of a picnic or alongside a gourmet meal.

Visitors to Paris can experience authentic foods at renowned bakeries like La Bourse et La Vie or by simply strolling along charming streets like Rue Montorgueil where bakeries line the sidewalks.

Indulging in a freshly baked baguette under the Parisian sky can be an unforgettable experience, providing not just sustenance but also a taste of true French culinary tradition. Embrace this staple of French gastronomy, foods, and wine to truly immerse yourself in the flavors and culture of Paris.

3. Macarons

Delicate French cookies made with almond flour, macarons are famous for their vibrant colors and exquisite flavors. These sweet treats come in a variety of fillings such as rich ganache, luscious buttercream, or fruity jam.

Macarons are not just a dessert; they are an experience that encapsulates the essence of French pastry craftsmanship. The intricate process of creating these confections involves precise measurements and techniques to achieve their signature light yet chewy texture.

When in Paris, embarking on a food tour solely dedicated to sampling different macaron flavors at various restaurants in different arrondissements is a must for any food enthusiast. From classic favorites like pistachio and raspberry to more exotic combinations like salted caramel or lavender-infused varieties, there is a macaron flavor to suit every palate.

The beauty of macarons lies not only in their taste but also in their visual appeal. Their dainty appearance makes them perfect for gifting or indulging in during a leisurely afternoon visit to one of Paris’s charming patisseries.

Indulging in these delightful treats may transport you into the heart of French culinary artistry while savoring each bite amidst the enchanting streets of Paris.

4. Cheese (Camembert, Brie, and Roquefort)

Camembert is a soft and creamy cheese encased in a bloomy rind that offers a rich and earthy flavor profile. This French classic has been enjoyed for centuries, originating from Normandy.

Brie, another popular choice, is renowned for its mild taste and velvety texture. With its soft interior beneath the white edible rind, Brie makes for an excellent addition to any cheese platter or pairing with fruits like grapes or figs.

Roquefort stands out as a distinctive blue cheese crafted from sheep’s milk. Its bold flavor profile with tangy notes sets it apart in the world of cheeses. Hailing from the South of France, Roquefort undergoes specific aging processes in natural caves to develop its unique characteristics.

French cuisine prides itself on an array of exquisite cheeses known collectively as “fromage.” These varieties not only showcase the diversity of flavors but also reflect the rich cultural heritage deeply rooted in gastronomy.

Whether you prefer the creamy indulgence of Camembert or the pungent kick of Roquefort, exploring these iconic French cheeses promises a delightful culinary journey through Parisian flavors.

5. Escargot

Escargot is a traditional French dish that features cooked land snails served in their shells with either garlic butter or herb sauce. This delicacy holds a significant place in French cuisine for its unique taste and cultural significance.

  • Delicacy Status: In France, escargot is considered a delicacy, often featured on upscale restaurant menus and enjoyed during special occasions.

  • Preparation: The snails are carefully cleaned, cooked, and then placed back into their shells along with the flavorful butter or sauce before being served hot.

  • Culinary Experience: Eating escargot involves using specialized utensils like small tongs and forks to extract the tender meat from the shell – providing an interactive dining experience.

Escargot introduces diners to a distinctive aspect of French gastronomy, showcasing the country’s culinary expertise beyond mainstream dishes like oysters or raw seafood.

6. Coq au Vin

Classic French dish of chicken braised in red wine, Coq au Vin is a culinary masterpiece that embodies the essence of traditional French cooking. The combination of tender chicken, earthy mushrooms, savory onions, and smoky bacon creates a symphony of flavors that has stood the test of time.

This dish is slow-cooked to perfection, allowing the ingredients to meld together and develop a rich sauce infused with the deep flavors of red wine. The result is a hearty and comforting meal that warms both the body and soul, making it a favorite choice for those seeking quality food with an elegant touch.

Coq au Vin can be found on menus across Paris, from quaint bistros to upscale restaurants. Its presence signifies not only a delicious meal but also a nod to France’s culinary heritage and its love affair with wine-infused dishes. So when in Paris, indulging in this iconic dish is not just about satisfying your taste buds; it’s about experiencing centuries-old traditions plated before you.

7. Duck Confit

Preserved duck leg slow-cooked in its own fat results in tender meat with crispy skin, a hallmark of this classic French dish. The method of preparation involves marinating the duck in salt, garlic, and herbs before cooking it slowly to achieve the perfect texture.

Duck confit is often served with accompaniments like roasted potatoes or a fresh salad to balance out the richness of the meat. This dish is a staple in traditional French cuisine and is widely appreciated for its indulgent flavors and succulent taste.

When visiting Paris, experiencing duck confit can provide insight into the depth of French culinary traditions. Its popularity among locals and tourists alike showcases its status as an iconic dish that embodies the essence of fine dining in France.

The rich history behind duck confit adds an extra layer of appreciation for this delicacy; dating back to times when preserving meats was essential for survival, it now holds a revered place on modern menus across Parisian restaurants.

8. Ratatouille

Ratatouille is a delightful vegetable stew originating from the Mediterranean region. It combines eggplant, zucchini, bell peppers, and tomatoes in a harmonious blend of flavors.

This dish is not only flavorful but also versatile. It can be enjoyed as a side dish to complement other main courses or stand on its own as a satisfying meal.

The colorful array of vegetables used in ratatouille not only provide an appealing visual presentation but also offer a variety of essential nutrients.

Ratatouille’s simplicity belies its complexity in taste; each ingredient contributes uniquely to the overall flavor profile, creating a symphony for your taste buds.

Whether you are exploring Michelin-starred restaurants or local eateries in Paris, trying ratatouille should definitely be on your culinary bucket list.

9. Crêpes

Crêpes are thin pancakes that can be made from wheat flour or buckwheat flour. These delectable treats offer a versatile dining experience as they can be filled with a variety of toppings, ranging from sweet options like Nutella to savory combinations such as ham and cheese. In Paris, crêpes are not just a food; they are part of the culinary culture and an iconic street food enjoyed by locals and tourists alike.

When strolling through the charming streets of Paris, you will likely come across numerous vendors skillfully preparing these delicate delights right before your eyes. The aroma of freshly cooked crêpes fills the air, enticing passersby to indulge in this classic French delicacy. Whether you opt for a simple sugar and lemon filling or go for more elaborate choices like strawberries and cream, each bite offers a delightful burst of flavors that epitomize French cuisine.

With their widespread popularity globally, crêpes have become synonymous with France’s gastronomic identity. Their simplicity in preparation coupled with endless possibilities for fillings make them an enduring favorite among food enthusiasts worldwide. So next time you find yourself in Paris, don’t miss out on savoring these deliciously thin pancakes that embody the essence of French culinary tradition.

10. French Onion Soup

French Onion Soup is a classic dish that boasts a rich flavor profile derived from caramelized onions and savory beef broth. The soup’s crowning glory is the gooey melted cheese topping combined with toasted bread, adding a delightful crunch to each spoonful.

This comforting soup has been enjoyed for centuries in France and beyond, earning its rightful place as a beloved culinary masterpiece. The sweetness of the onions, paired with the robustness of the broth, creates a harmonious blend that warms both body and soul.

Whether you’re seeking solace on a chilly day or simply craving something hearty and satisfying, French Onion Soup fits the bill perfectly. Its simplicity belies its depth of taste, making it an ideal choice for those looking to experience traditional French cuisine at its finest.

Indulge in this timeless favorite during your visit to Paris; it’s not just food but an embodiment of culinary artistry that encapsulates the essence of French gastronomy.

Frequently Asked Questions

Is it true that croissants are a must-try in Paris?

Absolutely! Croissants in Paris are like sunshine on a rainy day – buttery, flaky perfection. Whether plain or filled with chocolate, they’re an essential part of the Parisian culinary experience.

What makes French onion soup so special in Paris?

French onion soup in Paris is like a warm hug for your taste buds. The rich beef broth, caramelized onions, and gooey cheese topping create a symphony of flavors that will leave you craving more.

Are macarons worth trying while visiting Paris?

Definitely! Macarons are delicate almond meringue cookies sandwiched with flavorful fillings like ganache or buttercream. In Paris, these colorful treats are not just desserts but edible works of art that will make your taste buds dance.

How authentic is the escargot experience in Paris?

Escargot may seem adventurous, but trust me – when prepared with garlic herb butter and served piping hot in their shells, they’re surprisingly delicious. It’s an iconic French delicacy that embodies the essence of traditional cuisine.

Can I find good crepes easily around Paris?

Absolutely! Crepes are ubiquitous street food in Paris – thin pancakes filled with sweet or savory ingredients like Nutella or ham and cheese. You can’t walk far without stumbling upon a charming creperie ready to satisfy your cravings.