French open-air markets a must see

The open air markets of France all boast, Jambon...
The open air markets of France all boast, Jambon…

(Editor’s Note: Travel and Hospitality Director, Alain Piallat is currently traveling in Paris. He sends this report.) Paris, France, August 19, 2014- Sonoma Friday’s Farmer’s Market has become a place for many Sonomans to go to on Friday morning. It is enjoyable to the eye, interesting to look at and you are sure to meet someone you know. The food is fresh, good looking and the aromas are sure to titillate your appetite.

Farmers Markets have been around for a while in the US, but open-air markets have been in existence in France forever, so it seems.

Fish and seafood are an abundant staple at the markets of France.
Fish and seafood are an abundant staple at the markets of France.

I remember, as a child living in Paris going with my mother to Rue Tournefort where everyday merchants would display an array of meats, poultry, hanging from hooks for all to grab for the evening’s dinner. Vegetables and fruits were plentiful and the variety of items to buy never ceased to amaze me.

Open-air Markets in France have become even more plentiful. The French like to shop there, as they are sure to get the freshest of items. They know the butcher, the fishmonger, and the grocer and trust them to guide them through their purchases. The open-air markets have also become a tourist destination where visitors are fascinated by the variety of produce, breads, meats and other items being featured.

Cameras keep clicking and clicking and clicking.

I recently visited the President Wilson Avenue open-air market on a Saturday morning. While the number of stalls was less than normal (It was August, and in August the French are on vacation) I was not nevertheless disappointed. The prepared food filled the air with wafting aromas tempting the senses.. The fish was fresh. The fruits and vegetables were plentiful and beautiful to look at. There were plenty of meats one would not find in the US. All of it was a pleasure to the senses. When going to France, visit the museums, the churches, the castles but don’t skip the open-air markets, it’s a culinary adventure you’ll never forget.

(Alain Piallat is the travel and hospitality director of Foodie Tout and a regular contributor. Mr.Piallat is presently in France and will be sending reports regularly.)






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