Tips on food and cooking (#2)
 Cooking schools in Paris   Cookbooks and books about food
  • Le Cordon Bleu, 8 rue Leon Delhomme 75015 Paris 33-(0)1 53 68 22 50, Fax 33-(0)1 48 56 03 96 ; the Sorbonne of cooking schools!
  • Marguerite's Elegant Home Cooking, 35 rue Rouget de Lisle, 92150 Suresnes, France. Phone and fax: 33-(0) 1 42 04 74 00. Information at or email Hands-on simple and elegant French home cooking with Muriel-Marguerite Foucher. In English and French. Class size maximum 8. HIghly recommended.
  • Lenôtre, 48 avenue Victor Hugo 75116 Paris Tel. 33-(0)1 45 02 21 21 (French-speaking courses for amateur cooks)
  • ADAC (cooking courses offered by the city of Paris, French speakers only) : contact Maison des Ateliers, Terrasse Lautréamont 75001 Paris Tel. 33-(0)1 42 33 45 54
  • La Cuisine de Marie-Blanche, 18 avenue de La Motte-Picquet, 75007 Paris. Tel. 33-(0) 01 45 51 36 34. Classes in French , English and Spanish on everything from classic cooking to pastry and flower arranging and table manners.
  • Ritz-Escoffier Ecole de Gastronomie Française, 15 Place Vendome, 75001, Tel 33-(0) 01 43 16 30 50. Lessons for aspiring amateurs and true professionals, in French with an English translation.
  • La Toque d'Or, 55 rue de Varenne, 75005 Paris. Set up by Cordon-Bleu graduate Sue Young, the courses take place in her apartment. With partner Irene Adamian of Shopping Plus, Sue organizes a French For a Day program for groups which includes a morning market visit and cooking class and an afternoon exploring shops on the Left Bank.
  • Outside Paris :
    • On Rue Tatin, cooking in Normandy with Susan Herrmann Loomis
  • More to come

DID YOU KNOW THAT ….? Have you ever tried a "Trou Normand" i.e. a glass of strong alcohol in the middle of a meal ? It can be seen as an example of French know-how when it comes to food questions. If, in the middle of a heavy meal, you drink something very strong (like Calvados) or eat something very cold (like an ice cream with vodka or Calvados on it), your stomach is totally freaked out and it releases whatever is in it into you intestine. Therefore you become hungry again and you can keep eating. You can try the "Trou Normand" trick : it has been working for generations !

"Cooking universities"
Food is taken seriously in France! Some institutions are much more than cooking schools and aim at giving a professional training to people who want become a chef or a restaurant manager. Among them :

  • Le Cordon Bleu, in Paris, founded 120 years ago, a cooking school with programs in English and Japanese
  • Ecole Ferrieres in a castle with a 250-acre park, 30 km West of Paris, the most recent cooking school in a fantastic setting
  • Institut Paul Bocuse, in Lyon, founded by Paul Bocuse25 years ago in a castle West of Lyon, a surprising mix of a cooking school and a business school
  • Ecole Ferrandi, in Paris, founded almost a century ago, famous for its teachers

Most of the most famous French chefs "graduated" from one of these schools.

  • Paul BOCUSE, Bocuse à la Carte-Menus pour la table familiale, Flammarion, 1986.
  • Christine COLINET, Cuisine des Provinces de France, Gründ, Paris, 1981
  • Alexandre DUMAS, Petit dictionnaire de cuisine, Payot, 1994
  • Alexander LOBRANO, Hungry for Paris : 102 restaurants in Paris, Random, 2008 (probably the best guide for restaurants in Paris)
  • Ginette MATHIOT, Je sais cuisiner, Albin Michel, 1990 (the French equivalent of Joy of Cooking)
  • Pierre NOLOT, A la Recherche des Cuisines Oubliées, Berger-Levrault, Paris, 1977
  • Joel ROBUCHON, Le Meilleur et le Plus Simple de la Pomme de Terre, Robert Laffont, Paris 1994 (Robuchon is a genius and he makes potatoes into an Art form!)
  • Joel ROBUCHON, Le Meilleur et le Plus Simple de la France
  • Geneviève de TEMMERMAN, The A-Z of French Food, Scribo Ed. 1998, Arces, a slim pocket-size book, is the most complete French menu translator available ; accurate culinary definitions are included along with wine terms, historical information and gastronomic anecdotes.
  • Patricia WELLS, Food Lover's Guide to Paris, Methuen, New York, updated version
  • More to come...

And also :

  • Robert COURTINE, Le Cahier de Recettes de Madame Maigret, Laffont, Paris, 1974
  • Mort ROSENBLUM, A Goose in Toulouse and Other Culinary Adventures in France, Hyperion, New York, 2000
  • Mort ROSENBLUM, Chocolate, A Bittersweet saga of Dark and Light, Farrar, Straus Giroux 2005
  • More to come

Click on recipes for our suggestions and here for our links on food

AND DON'T FORGET TO LOOK FOR ... Harriet's book French Fried, about the French and their food, published by St. Martins Press in February 2001. Read some letters from readers.

 Wine Courses / Wine Tasting

  • CIDD Découverte du Vin, 30 rue de la Sablière, 75014. Tel 01 45 45 44 20 The Centre d'Information, de Documentation et de Dégustation was founded by Alain Ségelle, winner of the best Paris wine steward of the year award. Courses are on all levels and some are held in English and Japanese. Most of them are with Segelle.
  • Institut du Vin du Savour Club, 11-13 rue Gros, 75016 Paris. Tel 01 42 30 94 11. Georges Lepré, former Ritz and Grand Véfour sommelier heads up these courses which unfortunately are only offered in French. If your French is good, though, it sounds like a great time with "diner-dégustations" with the tasting of six wines with appropriate dishes. Quel plaisir!
  • Read about Wine tasting courses organized by the City of Paris.
  • Click here for more links
  • Back to the wine page

If you want to visit France with French experts in wine and food, contact Fugues en France, a tour operator specialized in the discovery of France's regional lifestyle, traditions and crafts.

And also, kitchen shops :

  • Culinarion, 99 Rue de Rennes 75006 Tel 01 45 48 94 76
  • Dehiller, 18 rue Coquillère 75001 (an incredible choice of kitchen supply)
  • Geneviève Lethu, 91 rue de Rivoli 75001 Tel 01 42 60 14 90 and many other places
  • M.O.R.A., 13 rue Montmartre 75001 Tel 01 45 08 19 24
  • A shop, "Les Délices Daubenton" in the Latin Quarter has a friendly site with many recipes.
  • More to come... (for a complete list, see Patricia Wells)

DID YOU KNOW THAT... French eating habits and table etiquette are very particular in France. For a humorous view of them, you may enjoy an article by Harriet Welty Rochefort : "Don't Eat Your Soup With a Fork - And Other Conseils of French Politesse" !

 USEFUL TIPS.... In France, people use much less ice cubes and it's an absolute no-no to put ice cubes in wine, red or white, and in champagne. Remember also that a "limonade" is not like US "lemonade". If you want a "lemonade" ask for a "soda au citron" or you'll get either nothing (because only children drink "limonade") or an extremely sugarry and sticky beverage...   Theme restaurants ...... 


DO YOU KNOW THAT ...? Alain Ducasse is the only French Chef to have fourteen stars to his name including three for his restaurant LouisXV in Monaco, three for Alain Ducasse in Paris and three for his restaurant in New York. For a fun experience, try his (still expensive) but more affordable restaurant in Paris : Spoon (12 rue Marignan, 75008 Paris, Tel.(0)1 40 76 34 44), serving "world cuisine" (

  • A funny experience is a visit to a really typical French restaurant in the north of Paris which is devoted entirely to the Pig. It is a pig-lover's paradise, with pictures of pigs, statues of pigs, a huge pig suspended from the ceiling, and of course, food that is based on this wonderful animal about which the French say "tout est bon dans le cochon". With its red checkered tablecloths and homey atmosphere, this can be an authentic and unusual restaurant experience in Paris. La Tête de Goinfre - La Cave du Cochon 16 rue Jacquemont 75017 Paris Tel. 33-(0)1 42 29 89 80
  • "Dans le Noir" (51 rue Quincampoix, 75004 Tel. 01 42 77 98 04) is an incredible restaurant : you are in total darkness, served by blind waiters, the food is good and it is an amazing experience (you'll understand what being blind means). Click here for a more detailed description.
  • More to come...

DID YOU KNOW THAT....? Putting the bread upside down on the table brings bad luck : that's what 46% of the French believe ! (Le Figaro, Feb.7, 2009) (and also remember that, in France, you put the bread on the table and NOT on the plate!).

To related pages : more tips on food (#1), French recipes, etc...

To table of contents

To top of the page

Back to home page

Harriet Welty Rochefort writes articles and books about France and the French. Order her books :

  • "Joie de Vivre", Secrets of Wining, Dining and Romancing like the French, St.Martin's Press, New York, 2012
  • "French Toast, An American in Paris Celebrates The Maddening Mysteries of the French", St.Martin's Press, New York, 1999
  • "French Fried, The Culinary Capers of An American in Paris", St.Martin's Press, New York, 2001

More on Harriet's books (excerpts, upcoming events, testimonials, etc..)

 To Wine & Cheese Tastings in Paris with a talk on intercultural differences by Harriet Welty 
To email me

 If you like this site, please bookmark it or create a link!