I used to go a lot to the Aligre Market when I first moved to Paris, and I remember discovering anis flowers and other exotic spices unfamiliar to me at that time. However, working abroad and eventually living in different arrondissements in Paris kept me away from this charming market for years –until now. Since this summer I have been rediscovering the market and even if it is less African and Arab than it used to be, it is still more ethnic than most of the markets in the center of Paris.
Yesterday we were tired after another wedding, and decided it was going to be a quiet dinner at home. My husband, a loyal follower of Le Fooding restaurant reviews, had recently read about a butcher’s shop/restaurant called Les Provinces at 20 Rue d’Aligre, so we decided to eat some beef for dinner. One of our favorite dishes, Côte de Bœuf (ultimate French meat dish), usually sells for a bit less than 30€/kg. The butcher at Les Provinces presented us with two options: Irish beef with a very small bone for 26€/kg and French côte de bœuf with a much bigger bone (as we usually buy our beef) for 36€/kg. Following the butcher’s recommendation, we opted for the Irish piece of 700gr for two. After taking notes of the butcher’s cooking tips, we purchased some tomatoes from the covered market (I did not know they are open so late!) and headed to the next address: the wine shop. One of the important things I have learned in France is that a good, well-prepared meal always deserves to be served with wine, and this rule can only be broken under specific, rare conditions….
If you read one of my previous posts Food shopping around the Aligre market, you may remember that one of the few remaining places in Paris where you can purchase your wine directly from an oak barrel is situated near the Aligre Market. Le Baron Rouge is an institution in Paris, and highly recommended. In addition, there is a bonus for oyster lovers, as they serve oysters during the winter months (this year they will start in the early October). Inside the wine bar, we returned the old bottle to the bar tender and he filled a new bottle with organic Côtes du Rhône (5.20€ for one liter). I find this tradition so cute, and I hope they keep their oak barrels for many more years to come! Tomatoes, beef and wine in our bag, we returned home to prepare the dinner. Doing groceries in France can be so much fun, and if you know the right places, you can buy fabulous products for a very decent price. Even in Paris. Vive la France!
The Aligre Market (Le Marche d’Aligre): Place Aligre, 75012 Paris (http://marchedaligre.free.fr/) Metro Ledru-Rollin
Restaurant Boucherie Les Provinces: 20, rue d’Aligre, Paris 75012 (http://www.lefooding.com/restaurant/restaurant-boucherie-les-provinces-paris.html)
Le Baron Rouge: 1 Rue Théophile Roussel, 75012 Paris (http://www.lefooding.com/restaurant/restaurant-le-baron-rouge-paris.html)