Culinary tours in Paris, French cuisine workshops, and wine tastings

Culinary tours in Paris, French cuisine workshops, and wine tastings

Food and wine are an integral part of the French culture, as much as history, art, or chansons. Therefore, it isn’t surprising that culinary tours in Paris have become so trendy. These tours, which I like to call “tours of the fine palate”, include a tour between food markets, patisseries, boulangeries, cheese and meat shops where you don’t only learn about the French culinary culture, but also taste quite a few of its delicacies.

Over the recent years, the culinary tours were also joined by the cooking workshops and wine tastings, which provide you with a practical option of being, if only for a few hours, a part of the tradition of the French cuisine. In short, this is a wonderful experience that can upgrade your next vacation in the City of Lights.

One major problem when it comes to culinary tours in Paris, cooking workshops and wine tastings, is the price. For example, one of the most famous guides in the field charges about 150 Euros per person for such a tour. However, it doesn’t have to be like that, and if you search a bit more thoroughly, you can find excellent tours for a wide price range.

On my last vacation in Paris, I discovered the culinary tours in the city, and I realized that if you stick to tours in English (even if it means taking tours not in your native language), you can find high quality tours for a much lower price. Since I don’t tend to keep the secrets of Paris to myself (after all, this is exactly why I created this blog), I decided to share my findings with you, and help you make your next vacation in Paris into a much more interesting and delicious one.

Culinary tours in Paris

Culinary tour in Montmartre with Secret Food Tours

I was given the recommendation for Secret Food Tours by people who know what they are talking about when I was looking for materials for my article about culinary tours in Paris. Therefore, I decided that this time I will join one of their tours in order to see what this is all about, and by chance, what I got was the Montmartre tour.

At first, I was a little sceptic, both because the very American character of the participants, and because the Montmartre is not one of the areas most known for their culinary traditions. However, about one minute after the guide, Jean Pierre Heiss, showed up, all of my scepticism just faded away.

From the moment he appeared by metro Abbesses with a bag of croissants, this guy didn’t stop amusing and interesting his audience, who followed him almost as if they were hypnotized. And don’t let his looks deceive you: this guy doesn’t just come to provide a “show”, but has a profound understanding in French culinary.

We went with him to a boulangerie and a fromagerie and a charcouterie, and in each spot we heard very comprehensive yet interesting explanations about the process of making the breads, the cheese and the meat. Finally, we came to a charming little place owned by him, where we sat down.

While continuing his explanations about the wonders of French culinary, Jean Paul started opening the wine bottles and slice the breads, the cheese and the meat. And so, in a fun and amusing atmosphere, filled with explanations about each and every thing that we have eaten, we got to know our guide a bit more closely.

It turns out that he learned to cook from his grandmother, in a farm in France, and he also worked as a baker and served as a consultant to French restaurants all over the world. In short, this is a fun and intriguing person, and every moment with him is an adventure.

Then, after we finished the meats, cheeses and various breads, and we felt as if we couldn’t eat even a single bite, Jean Paul declared that it was time for dessert. We left his little inn, and he took us to a tiny patisserie that only makes a certain type of pastries called Choupettes, to a stand of someone who makes excellent crepes, and finally to a chocolaterie of two Korean women who formulate the most wonderful chocolate (that was where I broke down, and decided to take the chocolate with me instead of eat it on the spot. After a few hours, I enjoyed eating it at the Tuileries gardens, and it was absolutely wonderful).

You can find more information on the tour and reserve a spot in this link.

Special discount for Anonymous Francophiles: when making the reservation, enter the code ZVI05 and get 5% discount. Also, please note that beyond this discount, there are special prices for children and adolescents.

Culinary tour in Saint Germain with Secret Food Tours

Culinary tour in Saint Germain, photo by Secret Food Tours
Culinary tour in Saint Germain, photo by Secret Food Tours

This is a tasting tour in the heart of the Saint Germain neighborhood, where several of the most famous cafes and food shops in Paris are located. The tour ends with a tastings meal in an ancient wine cellar. The tour includes:

  • A tour in a small group of up to 8 people.
  • A cup of coffee and a pastry at the beginning of the tour.
  • A visit to a patisserie where you will choose the cake that you will eat at the end of your meal.
  • A visit to a boulangerie and tastings of various types of French bread.
  • A visit to one of the food markets in Saint Germain.
  • A visit to a store that sells foie gras (including tastings).
  • A visit to a cheese shop and to a charcouterie shop (including tastings).
  • Wine, champagne, and non-alcoholic beverages.

You can find more information on the tour and reserve a spot in this link.

Special discount for Anonymous Francophiles: when making the reservation, enter the code ZVI05 and get 5% discount. Also, please note that beyond this discount, there are special prices for children and adolescents.

Culinary tour in the Marais with Secret Food Tours

Culinary tour in the Marais, photo by Secret Food Tours
Culinary tour in the Marais, photo by Secret Food Tours

The Marais is not only a neighborhood with fascinating history and beautiful palaces, it is also a place where one can fine many culinary gems. This next tour will help you find those places, and by the way teach you a little about French culinary. The tour includes:

  • A cup of coffee and a croissant at the beginning of the tour.
  • A visit to a boulangerie, where you will learn about the various types of French bread (including tastings).
  • A visit to the most ancient covered market in Paris, including cheese and wine tastings.
  • Enjoying a croque-monsieur in an authentic French brasserie.
  • A visit to a chocolaterie and chocolate and macarons tastings.

You can find more information on the tour and reserve a spot in this link.

Special discount for Anonymous Francophiles: when making the reservation, enter the code ZVI05 and get 5% discount. Also, please note that beyond this discount, there are special prices for children and adolescents.

The best chocolate in Paris

Chocolate tour in Paris, photo by Musement
Chocolate tour in Paris, photo by Musement

This is a guided tour created especially for chocolate lovers. The tour takes place in the 1st Arrondissement, between the Tuileries garden, the super-fashionable rue Saint Honoré, and the Madeleine church, and the abundance of culinary “shrines” in the area. During this tour you will learn all you need to know about chocolate, starting with its history and ending with the latest trends in the field of sweets. The tour includes:

  • A visit to five different chocolate stores, from traditional stores that have been producing classic chocolates for many years, to stores that create new culinary trends.
  • Chocolate tastings in each of those stores.

You can find more information on the tour and reserve a spot in this link.

Patisserie and chocolate tour

Patisserie and chocolate tour, photo by Musement
Patisserie and chocolate tour, photo by Musement

This tour takes place in the vibrant Saint Germain area, and focuses on both patisseries and chocolateries. During this tour, you will discover several of the best chef-patissiers in Paris, and taste some of their most beloved creations. In short, there are not many culinary tours in Paris that are sweeter than this one. The tour includes:

  • A tour in a small group of up to 8 people.
  • A visit to two patisseries.
  • A visit to five chocolateries.
  • A visit to a boulangerie.
  • Tastings in each of the locations you visit.

You can find more information on the tour and reserve a spot in this link.

Culinary voyage in Les Halles in the footsteps of French cuisine and wine

Culinary voyage in Les Halles in the footsteps of French cuisine and wine, photo by Musement
Culinary voyage in Les Halles in the footsteps of French cuisine and wine, photo by Musement

Although the wholesale market was relocated from Les Halles area during the 1970s, you can still find, to this day, “culinary shrines” with the best selection of patisseries, cheese and meat in France. Therefore, it is no surprise that this area is very popular among culinary tour guides in Paris. The tour will take place mainly on Rue Montorgueil, and it’s great selection of culinary attractions, and will include:

  • A tour in a medium group of up to 12 people.
  • A cup of coffee and a croissant at the beginning of the tour.
  • A visit to the most ancient patisserie in Paris.
  • A visit to cheese, fish and meat shops.
  • A visit to a wine cellar, and wine tastings accompanied by a professional sommelier.
  • A picnic meal composed of the products that were bought during the tour.

Please note: that children in the ages 4-17 get a discounted price, and small children get to join the tour for free.

You can find more information on the tour and reserve a spot in this link.

Tastings tour in Marché d’Aligre

Tastings tour in Marché d'Aligre, photo by Musement
Tastings tour in Marché d’Aligre, photo by Musement

Marché d’Aligre (Aligre market) is my favourite food market in Paris, and therefore I was very glad to discover that there is a culinary tour focused on its area. During this tour, you will discover some of the most important food stores in Marché d’Aligre and in the covered market Beauveau. In addition, you will walk the streets in the market’s vicinity, and discover the culinary influence of the North-African cuisine on the French cuisine. The tour includes:

  • A tour in a small group.
  • A visit to stores selling cheese, chocolate, meat, and more.
  • Food tastings.
  • A tea break in one of the cafes in the area.

You can find more information on the tour and reserve a spot in this link.

Cheese and charcouterie tour alongside Canal Saint Martin

Cheese and charcouterie tour alongside Canal Saint Martin
Cheese and charcouterie tour alongside Canal Saint Martin

Canal Saint Martin is not the first place that comes to mind when you think about culinary tours in Paris, due to its relative distance from the city centre. However, in this exact location, which still hasn’t become over-touristy, you can fine the bread, cheese and meat shops where the “ordinary” French people buy their wares.

In this 3 hour tour you will not only discover some excellent food stored, but also meet a cheese maker and a wine maker who have decided to collaborate, and provide you with a culinary experience during which you will enjoy a combination of cheese and wine, like only two experts can provide. The tour includes:

  • A guide who is an expert in French culinary.
  • Tastings of charcouterie, cheese and patisserie that can replace a meal.
  • A tour in Canal Saint Martin area.
  • Tastings of cheese and wine in a chic place by Canal Saint Martin.

You can find more information on the tour and reserve a spot in <a>this link</a>.

A tour in the Marais in which you will learn of the art of complementing cheese and wine

A tour in the Marais in which you will learn of the art of complementing cheese and wine, photo by Musement
A tour in the Marais in which you will learn of the art of complementing cheese and wine, photo by Musement

In this tour, which takes part in the northern part of the Marais, you will learn about the different cheeses in France, and which wines go well with each cheese. During this tour you will visit the cellar in which the various cheeses mature, and learn about cheese-making methods. In addition, you will get to taste 7 different types of cheese, accompanied by 2 wine glasses, bread and fruit. This tour includes:

  • Guidance in English, in small groups of up to 10 people.
  • Tastings of 7 types of cheese accompanied by bread and fruit.
  • Tastings of 2 types of wine.

Please note: this tour is not suitable for children and adolescents under 18.

You can find more information on the tour and reserve a spot in this link.

“Behind the scenes” tour in a Parisian boulangerie

“Behind the scenes” tour in a Parisian boulangerie, photo by Expedia

Would you like to learn how the baguettes and the rest of the wonderful French breads, which you can eat during your trip to Paris, are made? This tour will bring you behind the scenes of a Parisian boulangerie, and there you will learn of the process of baking the breads and the pastries from the moment they become dough and all the way to the moment when they are presented to be sold on the shelf, in the front section of the boulangerie. During the tour you will get tips and recipes that you can try later, when you get back home. The tour includes:

  • A guided tour in an authentic French boulangerie.
  • At the end of the tour you will get a baguette and a croissant.
  • Children will also get a pain au chocolate.

You can find more information on the tour and reserve a spot in this link.

Wine tour at the Montmartre

Wine tour at the Montmartre, photo by Musement
Wine tour at the Montmartre, photo by Musement

This tour is actually two culinary tours in Paris, that take place in two completely different locations in the City of Lights, both revolving around wine. The tour begins in a wine cellar close to the Louvre, which used to provide wine for the kings who lived in that palace. After tasting a few types of wine and learn of their production process, you will travel to the Montmartre, where you will get a guided tour among the charming alleys, and hear stories of the people who once lived there. Eventually, you will get to the Montmartre vineyard, which is usually not open for the public. After learning how this small vineyard produces quite a lot of wine types, you will get to taste some of them, too! The tour includes:

  • A tour in a small group in an ancient wine cellar by the Louvre museum.
  • Wine tasting.
  • A group tour at the Montmartre.
  • A visit to a vineyard.
  • An additional wine tasting.

You can find more information on the tour and reserve a spot in this link.

Bustronome – see the main monuments of Paris while having lunch

 

If you like to multitask and manage to see the main monuments in Paris while not missing lunch at the same time, this bistro-bus was created just for you. This tour combines a voyage around Paris in an especially pampering bus, and a lunch straight from the French cuisine. In short – enjoy both worlds.

You can find more information on the tour and reserve a spot in this link.

The Fine Bouche Tasting Passport – a self culinary tour at your own pace

If you want to take culinary tours in Paris, but at your own pace and without being tied to any guide, this is exactly what the Tasting Passport concept was created for. This is a sort of “passport” that allows you to go on a tasting tour, at your own pace, in six food stores in Paris. In each of those places you will not only taste the goods this place has to offer, but also get an explanation about the place and the food sold there.

You can find more information on the tour and reserve a spot in this link.

Guided tour at the Rungis wholesale market

Until the 1960s, the wholesale market of Paris used to be located at Les Halles, in the 1st Arrondissement. However, due to problems of endless traffic, it was decided to move it to Rungis, located south of Paris. In this market you will find the freshest produce that arrives to Paris from all parts of France, and if you happen to be foodies that are willing to get up at 4am, you’re in for a culinary experience you wouldn’t want to give up.

You can find more information on the tour and reserve a spot in this link.

Before we continue: some very interesting exhibitions in Paris

Visits to the grand museums in Paris combined with a culinary experience

If you’re not so much into strictly culinary tours in Paris, and you’re looking for something with more emphasis on art that will also include a culinary element, these tours can be perfect for you.

Guided tour at Musée d’Orsay combined with a gourmet meal

Guided tour at Musée d'Orsay combined with a gourmet meal, photo by Musememt
Guided tour at Musée d’Orsay combined with a gourmet meal, photo by Musememt

Musée d’Orsay is one of my favorite museums in Paris, for its amazing paintings from the 19th century and the beginning of the 20th century it houses, headed by the impressionists’ artworks. When you arrive at the museum, you will get a 2-hour guided tour among the most important artworks in the museum. At the end of the tour you will reach the fancy museum restaurant, where you will enjoy an authentic French lunch. At the end of your meal you can return to the museum, and continue walking at your own pace and see all of the artwork you haven’t seen so far.

You can find more information on the tour and reserve a spot in this link.

Afternoon tour at the Louvre and wine tasting

Afternoon tour at the Louvre and wine tasting
Afternoon tour at the Louvre and wine tasting

The Louvre is, without a doubt, the most famous museum in Paris, and it contains an unfathomable amount of artworks. If you wish to tour is in a slightly different manner than most tourists, this tour was meant for you. You will visit the Louvre in the evening, when there are significantly fewer visitors there than during the rest of the day, so that you can enjoy the artworks without all of the commotion.

After a several hours of a guided tour between all the most famous artworks in the museum, comes the culinary part, which takes place in a mansion from the 18th century, located not far from the museum. There you can taste three glasses of wine, and enjoy a buffet of cold meats and cheese. Finally, after you finish the meal and wine tasting, you will leave the place with a specially-labeled bottle of wine. The tour includes:

  • Entrance to the Louvre without standing in line.
  • A group tour of about two hours in a group of up to 25 people.
  • Wine, charcuterie and cheese tasting.
  • A bottle of wine with a unique label (for extra charge).

You can find more information on the tour and reserve a spot in this link.

Cooking  and baking workshops, and wine tasting in Paris

If you love cooking and wish to learn the secrets of the French cuisine, these activities were meant just for you.

Macaron preparation class

Macaron preparation class, photo by Expedia
Macaron preparation class, photo by Expedia

If you absolutely adore macarons, and want to know how to make these pastries, which have become one of the symbols of the French patisserie, this class was created for you. It is hosted by a chef-patissier in a private apartment in central Paris, and up to 8 people can participate in it.

During this class you will learn how to turn the delicate meringue and ganache into macarons, and you’ll be able to make macarons in different flavors, such as chocolate, lemon, and berries. At the end of the class you will take home the macarons you have just made, and – of course – the recipe, too, so that you can make them again at home.

You can find more information on the tour and reserve a spot in this link.

Patisserie class in Paris

Patisserie class in Paris, photo by Musement
Patisserie class in Paris, photo by Musement

If you wish to learn how to make patisserie like a real French chef, you have to learn it from a chef-patissier, and this is exactly what you’ll get here. This class takes place at the chef’s home in a small group, and on your time there you will learn to make one or two desserts, such as tarte Tatin, hot chocolate cake, or Madeleine cookies, like the ones Proust wrote about in the book In Search of Lost Time. The class will be accompanied by explanations about the French cuisine and its culinary culture. The class includes:

  • A baking class in English, hosted by a professional chef patissier.
  • All the required ingredients to prepare the dessert that you will learn to make.
  • Tea and coffee, to accompany the tastings of your desserts.

You can find more information on the tour and reserve a spot in this link.

Wine tasting in a wine cellar from the 17th century

Wine tasting in a wine cellar from the 17th century, photo by Musement
Wine tasting in a wine cellar from the 17th century, photo by Musement

Would you like to get to know some of the best types of French wine, and by the way learn a little about the French wine culture? This wine tasting class, which takes place at 17:00 in a wine cellar located not far from the Louvre museum, was created just for you. Over the course of this evening you will taste wines from 6 different regions in France, including Bordeaux, Bourgogne, and Champagne.

Alongside the tastings you will learn about the production process of the wine, and about the differences between the wines in the different regions. The sommelier will also teach you how to properly read the label on the wine and understand exactly what it is  that you’re drinking. In short, this is both an informative and delicious experience. The wine tasting includes:

  • An explanation in English about the different types of wine.
  • Tastings of 6 different wine types.
  • An option to purchase the wines you enjoyed.

You can find more information on the tour and reserve a spot in this link.

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