Where in Paris can one find all of these, in one convenient location?
1. Champion female woodcutters.
2. Goats, pigs, cats, ox, bull, horses, sheep, ewes, roosters, dogs and cats.
3. Rum cocktails. And wines from ALL the regions in France, by the glass, the box, the cask, whatever you fancy my dear.
4. Grand Marnier crepes and for the cerisephiliacs, crepes with cherry confiture with Cherry Marnier. For more cherries, stop by at the griottine counter and enjoy these lusciuous morello cherries in kirsch.
5. Oceans and mountains of pork and poultry products: saucissons, jambons, pates, terrines. Offered by the generous slices by men wearing tattoos and natty berets. Alternatively why not a 5 euro foie gras sandwich, hell, why not a jar of foie when it can be yours for an entirely reasonable 15 euros. At one point the sacrilegeous thought came to mind, is it too much of a good thing? Three days later though, looking at the prices of these treats at Le Grand Epicerie, Bon Marche, we were kicking ourselves for not buying more.
6. Celebrity chefs. See, my french teacher had a useful tip when she advised us to watch lots of french TV. She meant the news channels of course, but if it were not for my diligent sessions of Cuisine.TV, I would not have recognised the face of Eric Leautey. I didn't know his name and had to ask it, but he was very sweet about it, and then he showed me his beautiful new book on 'en papillote' cooking.
All these and more, was what we enjoyed at the Salon International de l'Agriculture (last day today). Unlike most things French, this was an incredibly well organised event: tickets were easily available online, at FNAC or at the venue, they cost 12 euros for adults and children under 6 get in free, and well, I may be easily impressed but even in the big crush the queues to the toilets (clean and dry of course) were not too long. Next year we'll make a two day trip out of it, one for the little girl to ooh and aah at the animals, and yes, for another go at the piggy race so she can get that 'le porc' t-shirt. And another day to stock up on all the edible goodies.
More photos viewable in this flickr site.