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Sure, scarves and beanies are still out in force, but it’s OK to start thinking about the summer already. It’s only a couple of months until drinking en terrasse in a T-shirt becomes vaguely comfortable again… and a couple more until the city empties out for the grandes vacances.
But now get your calendars out, because there’s another reason to get excited about the sunny season. The line-up for food extravaganza Taste of Paris has just been released – and what a thing of beauty it is. For this fifth edition, which runs from May 9 to 12, the organisers have invited the crème de la crème of Paris’s food scene to prepare dishes and run cookery classes in situ. And where is it exactly? Oh, just the enormo-dome that is the Grand Palais.
Taste of Paris has always gone a bit over-the-top, in a good way, and this year is no exception. Some 40 top chefs are offering 60 exquisite (and very affordable) one-off menus – think €6-€12 a plate – while a vast local producers’ market will allow visitors to take something appetising home. Here’s all you need to know.
From Michelin stars to next big things
What’s best, and most bizarre, about Taste of Paris is that one moment you might be in the presence of a two Michelin-starred chef, the next staff from the Ritz or the Plaza Athénée kitchens, the next an award-winning baker, all in one room, in an atmosphere as lively as it is laid-back. There’s a Hollywood feel to this year’s cast, which features fabled chefs Michel Roth and Thierry Marx, star pâtissiers Hermé and Conticini, and the up-and-coming likes of Pierre Sang and Juan Arbeleaz.
Also worth discovering are pâté kings Gilles and Nicolas Vérot, of Maison Vérot, and Jean-Edern Hurstel, whose Champs-Elysées address Edern has proven a refined hit over the past year. Meanwhile, Mohammad Elkhady, who was spotted at the city’s Refugee Food Festival, will prepare a specially curated Syrian menu.
Join a masterclass… and sample the finest local produce
If you’re not feeling full after one of these exclusive blowouts, we’d recommend a wander under the astonishing Nave of the Grand Palais, which was built for the Universal Exposition of 1900. And why not try one of the many on-site cooking masterclasses? There are all sorts on offer, so think about your culinary weak spots and choose accordingly. To round off your trip, head to the growers’ and artisans' market, where 100 stalls will showcase the finest produce from the Île-de-France region. Basically… there’s no way you’ll be going home on an empty stomach.
What? Fifth edition of Taste of Paris
When? May 9-12 2019. 11.30am-4pm and 7pm-11.30pm (Thursday : 7pm-11h30pm)
Where? Grand Palais, Avenue Winston Churchill, 8th