Psst... We're working on the next generation of Chowhound! View >
HOME > Chowhound > France >
Nov 16, 2011 12:22 AM

Paris area large supermarkets that worth visiting ?

I know this question may seem weird with all the great street markets possibilities in the central Paris areas, but maybe there are truly good large supermarkets at more distant suburb areas worth exploring, that will give me opportunity to see the widest selection of produce and nation food condiments etc., and still will have wide varieties of artisanal cheeses, charcuterie, chocolate tablets, speciallity preserves etc. ? Maybe it is also possible to find there those "speciallity" produces in better prices?
Thanks !

  1. Click to Upload a photo (10 MB limit)
  1. While large hypermarches as Carrefours and Auchan have a Walmart appearance and gobs of good stuff, they do not offer the really artisanal items that a Gallery Lafayette and Bon Marche does with a large selection as well. The former are just outside the peripherique and available by metro but not easily. You should probably do both styles to see the differences. Today l am doing Auchan as well as Gal Lafayette.

    1 Reply
    1. re: Delucacheesemonger

      Excellent, thanks. I assume that those places will not have the really "highend" artisanal offerings available at Lafayette and Bon Marche, but as long as it has an interesting wide range of products from all around France, i'm really curious to visit those places also.

    2. While I hate going to supermarkets here in France, as a cultural experience I love going to them when abroad.

      I know of two huge Auchan hypermarkets easily accesible by metro: One in the 4 Temps mall at La Défense, and another right near the Gallieni metro station in Bagnolet on the other side of Paris. Your choice will probably depend on where you're staying in Paris, but I prefer Bagnolet as it's nearer the métro and I find La Défense harrowing. Also the Bagnolet Auchan is near to the Porte de Montreuil flea market which is open on the weekends and mondays.

      4 Replies
      1. re: vielleanglaise

        "While I hate going to supermarkets here in France, as a cultural experience I love going to them when abroad."
        I hate to admit I also share this perversion.
        And La Défense itself is a violation of human rights.

        1. re: vielleanglaise

          Apart from of course the "culinary cultural" aspect, I have to admit my very very weak spot for supermarkets and especially "unknown" ones abroad - when i used to be younger, working months and long crazy hours abroad,wondering the isles of those places after a very long day, was like therapy before heading back "home" :-) I'm still pretty much addicted to this stuff. Thanks all for the info..

          1. re: oferl

            I'm with you, oferl -- my evening entertainment when traveling abroad was wandering a supermarket.

            1. re: sunshine842

              same here! actually...that's true even when I am at "home"

        2. You can also go to the Carrefour in the Place d'Italie.. I went for the first time a few weeks ago and nearly fainted at the aisle selling chocolate bars- my favorite 4pm snack at home. there were so many choices! Then I walked to the rue Monge which is not too far away - you can experience the mass and the class in the same trip..

          1. If you're headed out to the eastern suburbs (for Disney or the La Vallee Village "outlet" shopping) there's a massive Auchan hypermarket at the Val d'Europe stop on the RER-A, or a Carrefour Planete (the largest and newest Carrefour store format) about 5 minutes' walk from the Torcy station on the same RER-A line. (the Carrefour has been there for years; it was just converted to the Planete format as of November)

            1. Supermarkets are a treasure trove of inexpensive gifts to bring those who have never seen the inside of Dubois or tasted Bordier. They carry artisanal butters and cheeses, decent chocolate and confitures. Look for things that are ordinary in France but pricy here, like canned chestnuts or Lentils de Puy or tarbais beans. Most supermarkets have a fancy food section or local product aisle. I would think that close to Paris one might find a good selection of brie and coulommiers cheeses. Bring shopping bags because supermarkets do not (necessarily) give out bags, a fact learned humiliatingly in the country after we bought a dozen small packages and jars of stuff for a picnic.

              1 Reply
              1. re: mangeur

                In September in Beaune, we hit the local E. LeClec for goods to stock our gite. We knew about the no bags policy, but not about the shopping cart deposit. A couple of our group spread out to find carts and took empty ones near the front of the store. Whoa, they were besieged by the ladies who paid a 1 euro deposit for the carts. It took awhile to sort out, we didn't speak French. Kind of exciting at the time, now its part of our adventure.