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Special Market of Regional Producers in the Marais on Dec. 3-5

This is an annual event in the tiny Village St. Paul in the Marais, 4ème, Métro St. Paul or Sully-Morland. Producers of foods from various regions of southwest France offer their products to taste and buy. I've eaten things from fresh oysters to woodfire roasted mushrooms. The département de Corrège is featured this year.

It's especially worth a visit if you've never seen the Village St. Paul. This is a delightful series of connected courtyards behind the rue St. Paul, between the quai des Celestins and rue St. Antoine.

It opens on Friday at 14h00 and Sat/Sun at 09h00. Feel free to drop me an email if you're coming and would like company. I am a few minutes away, just around the corner. I use Gmail. My address name is RandyParis4. (Please don't post meetups on this board.)

Website for this Marché des Producteurs de Pays (in French):

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  1. Near there, I have to add that since I'm a well-known curmudgeonly critic of food opportunities in the Marais, I chanced upon a great cheese shop earlier this week as I was walking from the Bastille to the MEP, it's just past St. Paul (the church) before you get to St Paul (the Metro Station) among awful drecky places and had a local crowd spilling out the door. I got an Epoisses, some Abondance, and a whole creamy moderately creamy goat. All were super. (I promise I'll save the wrapping paper next time).

    27 Replies
    1. re: John Talbott

      I'll have to check it out tomorrow. I know the fromagerie in the other direction from the church, past the greengrocer as you head towards rue St. Paul. I have not liked them in the past, but haven't been there recently. If you have a different place close by, that would save me going to the Ile St. Louis (Ferme St. Aubin) or Alléosse, except for special occasions.

      1. re: RandyB

        Oh Randy, I'm not sure, what happened was I was walking from the St Paul church to the MEP and I passed all those crappy places on the South side of the street and suddenly saw this host of folks standing "on line" as they say, and joined them. Those three cheeses were the equivalent on my local - Marie Quatrehomme.

      2. re: John Talbott

        If you are talking about 77 rue St Antoine, that's Pascale Bellevaire, not only cheese but arguably some of the best butter around.

        1. re: mangeur

          "You've got it, by George, you've got it." At least, according to Google Maps, those invasive Socialist/Capitalist geek/nerds.

            1. re: John Talbott

              "Pascale Bellevaire"

              JT, there is one much nearer chez toi, on 48 rue des Martyrs. The butter there is ace. I was steered by Julot.

              Excuse me, for reference sake, should be "Pascal" not "Pascale", and "Beillevaire" not Bellevaire".

              1. re: John Talbott

                Ok, this had me totally confused, but I think I've figured it out. My problem was that there are two churches on rue St. Antoine, one between rue St. Paul and the métro St. Paul, the other between rue St. Paul and the Bastille. So, here's what I wrote long ago in my guide to the neighborhood for apartment guests:

                Between the green grocer and the Caves St. Antoine is a small cheese shop that may be ok, but I’ve never found them friendly nor with the best selection. [This is the one I incorrectly thought John meant.] The cheese shop I prefer is on St. Antoine, but past (east of) the rue St. Paul. They also have fresh-made ravioli. [This is Bellevaire at 77, rue St. Antoine.]

                The main reason I stopped going to Bellevaire was they don't carry some of my favorites.

                1. re: RandyB

                  If you go to rue des Martyrs, you can have a battle of the butter bands: do an A-B comparison of Beillevaire butter and the beurre Bordier aux algues sold a few doors down at Les Papilles Gourmandes.
                  Hubby Poo prefers Beillevaire. In general I do too but honestly I break down with whichever I taste last.

                  1. re: RandyB

                    As I said I was aimlessly walking from the Bastille to the MEP and paying no attention until I saw this horde; then after we spent the evening gorging on the cheese I thoughtlessly threw out all the wrappers. I'll be by again for sure.

                    As for 48 rue des Martyrs, I'm sure I'll be by too but I've got fine butter at Quatrehomme on my street so why schlep?

              2. re: John Talbott

                Are we speaking of Pascal Trotte? Small but serious....

                1. re: Gman

                  No we are speaking of Pascal Beillevaire.

                  1. re: Gman

                    There's this thing called Google which very old people like me find very useful and if you put in MEP you come up with #1 on the hit list the Maison Européenne de la Photographie http://www.mep-fr.org/us/ It's a fabulous 4 storybuilding with great photo shows.

                    1. re: John Talbott

                      C'mon, John. We are an inbred group. Most of us understand the acronyms posted. But I've spent considerable time chasing down others. You recently suggested that we include meal prices, a great idea, and I'd add whether it is a lunch or dinner price.

                      It takes a poster only a few extra keystrokes to provide precise coordinates and menu information, but it saves exponentially more time from both current and downstream readers.

                      1. re: mangeur

                        "it is a lunch or dinner price. "
                        That's easy; with me its always lunch.

                      2. re: John Talbott

                        It is possible that Google takes into account your computer's location. Out of curiosity, I just Googled MEP and after wading through 3 pages I still didn't find Maison Européenne de la Photographie...most prominently displayed was Member of European Parliament. Even though the MEP is a place we visit nearly every trip, I must confess that I also didn't recognize the acronym...does this failure disqualify me from future government employment (FGE) ?

                        I am one of the worst offenders of not including the prices of meals...my usual response when queried is to check out John Talbott's web-site.

                        1. re: Laidback

                          Google automatically checks your location and gives you the local version. To circumvent this, say to get to Google.fr when you are in the US, you go to www.google.com/ncr. For Belgium you'd do www.google.be/ncr, meaning "no country reset" or something like that.

                          To find MEP without doing the google trick, the search phrase would be "MEP paris"

                            1. re: John Talbott

                              And if you use gmail, they track the text of your emails so they can direct advertising towards your inclinations or kinks. Very scary.

                              1. re: John Talbott

                                yep, socialist/capitalist geeks!
                                the DH calls them the commander of the alien-robots, and when war breaks out between us and them robots, he'll side with google.

                              2. re: RandyB

                                Brilliant -- just tried it. Without the "paris" part, I also got many links related to member of european parliment, but with the addition of "paris", immediately I got the photography museum. As an aside, this is one of my favorite venues in paris, but I also did not recognize the acronym).

                                1. re: Nancy S.

                                  yep, I didn't recognize it either (I have my photographer's hat off when I have my glutton's hat on) and I go to EVERY expo. btw, it's free on wednesday afternoons in case anyone didn't know.

                                  1. re: kerosundae

                                    Thanks for the tip. I didn't know about Wednesdays being free. But that's 5pm to 8pm, according to the site. I'll be at a pastry class in the am at Lenôtre, but can walk over to MEP in the late afternoon after I deposit my Opéra at home.

                            2. re: John Talbott

                              Merci John. Saw your posting about this place on your blog and didn't put deux and deux together, which, speaking of deux, is ironic since our Paris perch for six years running is just up the pave on Deux Ponts... will stop in this Decembre!

                              1. re: Gman

                                I agree with Nancy that this is a go-to quarterly place.

                        2. As noted in my first post, and now more immediate, the little special market starts tomorrow. I and another hound will be going around 11h on Saturday.

                          5 Replies
                          1. re: RandyB

                            I am also planning to go, that is, if the weather is above 0°C for cryin out loud.

                            1. re: Parigi

                              Probably won't be. What will that do to the oysters, for crying for real?

                              See my note in first post about meeting up, with off board contact.

                              1. re: RandyB

                                D'acc. Last year I actually met up with a hound and toured the market togother. Justement, had great Cap Ferret oysters and foie gras.

                                1. re: Parigi

                                  The Arcachon oysters are lovely. However, eating them sur place at 0°C is not as inviting as previous years when it was warmer. If one brings a platter, they will shuck them for you at no extra cost. That works well if one lives nearby. That's what I've done at this market in the past, although I don't mind shucking oysters myself.

                                  Here is the information page, by the way:

                                  1. re: Parigi

                                    DH and I will go tomorrow if I'm no longer puking out my entire bodyweight like I have been the last couple of days. sorry for the TMI

                            2. I just got home from this and it was really great - not too crowded in the early evening, friendly producers, several offers of samples. We got some duck legs (on the stove right now), some figs stuffed with foie gras, a couple cheeses, and some sausages - the lady selling the sausages exlained that they were from 2-year old cochons de Limousin and gave me some (I think) pretty solid cooking instructions for them, too. There were a lot of interesting-looking honeys, confitures, aperitifs and wines, as well, plus lots of foie gras and charcuterie.

                              9 Replies
                              1. re: LiaM

                                Sounds lovely. I look forward to going tomorrow late morning. I will look for those sausages.

                                1. re: RandyB

                                  A great time was had by all, ending on a note of Opéra pastry by Randy freshly taught by Lenotre. Yum.
                                  And now my fridge is replenished with foie gras, gésiers, aiguillettes…

                                  1. re: Parigi

                                    was it just the one small courtyard off of Rue St Paul? Went yesterday (wasn't being a snot in not doing a meetup; didn't expect to be there!) and just saw the one cluster (in the pink courtyard) of producteurs from the Sudouest. (still managed to score foie gras d'oie)

                                    We walked around, but that was all we saw..and that was in the thick of the snow/slush/mess in the early afternoon, so we weren't highly motivated to do a lot of exploring, either.

                                    1. re: sunshine842

                                      Village St Paul is actually a series of 4, 5 courtyars, all occupied by the market.

                                      1. re: Parigi

                                        I know it's a string of courtyards, but I was afraid of that -- the pink courtyard was the only one that was marked in any way (the purple was empty) -- but it was too sloppy and nasty at that point in the day to do too much exploring.

                                        1. re: sunshine842

                                          There are five entrances with signs to the different courtyards, all joined. Four entrances on rue St. Paul, one around the corner on a street whose name I forget.

                                          1. re: RandyB

                                            Oh well...next year. Got my foie gras, though. (was just hating life that it's too soon to buy fresh for New Year's -- they had some *gorgeous* foie)

                                            1. re: sunshine842

                                              The market is still on today (Sunday).

                                              1. re: Parigi

                                                but life intervenes, alas.

                                                Went to two local marches de Noel out here in the provinces, and bought confit, more foie gras, Champagne, Bourgogne, a good range of delicious terrines and pates, all from small regional producers who've made the trip to our departement for the marches, as well as some killer-awesome Limoncello and mandarin marmalade made on a small citrus grove in Sicily.

                                                (I stock up on terrines and pates during the Christmas season to enjoy through the year!)

                              2. wow! sounds awesome! Wish we could have been there. Hope you are having fun in Paris. . . .

                                1. We got very nice pruneaux, sausages from "cul noir" pigs (not a variety I've heard of before, but the product looks amazing) from Ferme de La Combe. Also some nut oil and Nyons olive oil. I think the market was very unlucky with the cold and snow but I saw some of the vendors also had stands in the extreme sensory overload at Espace Champerret, so it wasn't a total loss for them.