One of the best gourmet food halls in Paris has a new look and location. Lafayette Gourmet, which is part of the Galeries Lafayette department store, moved its tantalizing delicacies across the street to 35, boulevard Haussmann last fall. It makes sense to locate Lafayette Gourmet in the same building as Lafayette Maison with its broad selection of home goods. (Previously, gourmet foods were in the Men’s Store.) Foods and wines occupy the entire ground floor and lower ground floor in the new site. Several restaurants offer limited seating. The extensive wine selection is dramatically displayed along curving walls and separated by glazed partitions.
Lafayette Gourmet has everything from caviar to cookies, from oysters to octopus, and from Ibérico ham to ice cream. One of my favorite boutiques within Lafayette Gourmet is Pâtisserie Sadaharu Aoki. The Tokyo-born pastry chef arrived in France in the early 1990s. Ever since, he has been turning out extraordinary sweets that mix French know-how with Japanese flavors. The green tea éclair, for example, is unforgettable. His chocolates are a crowd-pleaser too, as was evident at the Salon du Chocolat in Paris.
Galeries Lafayette is the only large department store (grand magasin) in Paris that’s still family owned. Across the river on the Left Bank in the chic 7th arrondissement, Le Bon Marché is another grand magasin with a major gourmet food hall, called La Grande Épicerie. It was renovated in 2013. With one gourmet food hall on the Left Bank and another on the Right, there’s no need to ever go hungry or wander far to find delicacies in Paris. But you weren’t worried about that, were you?
Lafayette Gourmet is located at 35, boulevard Haussmann, 75009 Paris. Open from Monday to Saturday, 8:30 am-9:30 pm.