On this delicious three hour immersion into French artisanal food, we will explore some of the finest specialty shops on the Rive Gauche (Left Bank) of the Seine. Winding our way through the charming Saint Germain des Pres neighborhood, with our expert, a chef or food writer, we will sample and learn about the history of such French staples as the baguette, a vast variety of cheeses, and charcuterie, and how they fit into the daily Parisian diet.
On our gastronomic journey, we will meet the purveyors of these small multigenerational, family run shops, and gain an understanding of the importance and pride they feel in being part of the local food community. We’ll discover the parallels between the artisanal products available in France and what we may be familiar with from home. We will also learn about the differences between such speciality shops as a pâtissierie and a boulangerie, and experience the French approach to food as an art form, where pastries are presented as jewels, and each tasting selection is handled with the greatest care. Our education in the French palate will extend to understanding the aging process of cheeses at a fromagerie, the technique of gavage used in producing foie gras, and the science and art form of making the perfect baguette. Since our group is small, there will be plenty of time for dialogue and questions to round out our immersion into French artisanal food.