Le Foodist Paris Cooking Class

Want to Plan a Wine Tasting Tour: Here’s How!

Read more about our Wine Tasting Classes here

Paris is one of the most amazing places that you can visit. There is a reason it is called ‘The city of love,’ ‘The city of lights,’ and ‘The most romantic city in the world.’ That reason is that Paris is extremely beautiful. There is stunning architecture, outstanding tourist attractions, amazing cuisine and tons of friendly people.

On top of all that, Paris (and France), is also world renown for their wines, champagnes and remarkably beautiful vineyards. The entire country is packed full of wineries, both old and new. So a 1-day wine tour from Paris may be the perfect way to experience this rich part of Paris history.

So what can you expect on your wine tour? How about amazing wine and some delicious eats to pair with it. Since we’re in Paris, you can bet that it’s not going to be some ordinary ‘fingerfoods’ either. This is when the chefs are really able to shine. Being that Paris is one of the most prestigious gastro meccas in the world, there are many top chefs who take residence here, using their culinary gifts of crafting remarkable smells that turns passerbyers into diners. This is great news for you when planning your potential winery events.

Home to culinary arts schools, there a lot of different strategies and tricks that chefs learn and use to make their dishes taste so good. Here are some of the different strategies that chefs use to make their plates pop with deliciousness.

how to plan a wine tasting tour

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Planning Your Tour Aimed for Success

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Before going all out and booking the best and most extravagant wine adventure, maybe a little planning can tie everything together in a pretty bow. It can get complicated trying to determine which winery to visit, which one offers your most preferred flavors or blends. Maybe it’s not wines you are looking for, but a nice champagne for a special occasion. Either way, it starts with planning and from there the rest if tasty!

Whether you are making a day venture to local wineries or have heard of a favored countryside vineyard that specializes in an exclusive variety, you will want to know where to go and how to get there.

Know How and Where to Get Proper Pairings

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From knowing how to identify the different wines properly, you’ll also find that you can enhance flavors of your favorite dishes or even beverages by knowing how to pair certain flavor profiles together. One great way to do that is to research how to buy cheese in Paris. This ensures you will not make pairing mistakes. Now that you know your meats and cheeses, ready to actually plan a winery trip?

Where to look for the Best Experience

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While some regular people tend to either go to a wine event or a cooking activity, some of the best combine the two. You can find some of the top chefs in Paris attached to a few of these walkthroughs. And come on, who turns down a meal from a renowned chef? Exactly! Wine and dine as they say.

When designing or planning perfect wine tours, you have to keep food in mind, not really, but who doesn’t like a little plate here or there. There are so many delicious side flavors to consider. Eating and drink go hand in hand, so it’s always best to pair the two when creating a tasting event.

How many Stops should you Book?

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If you’ve ever been to a tasting event, then chances are you’ll already know this little tip. This is where you’ll want to explore the possibilities of planning multiple stops. Different venues offer varieties, so do a little digging and find at least 3-5 stops. Not sure where to go? There are several wine tasting tours that range from amazing Paris gourmet food tours to vineyard explorations of some of the top wineries in Paris.

Which Season best suits your Regional Travels

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Let’s face it, every business has a peak season, and winery tours are no different. During the Summer and Fall, you can ask any curator at any of the vineyards, and they will tell you these are the busiest times of the year. If you do not mind crowds and the usual tourist experience, then these months will be perfect, but for those who enjoy a more intimate approach and personal experience, you can get the best tour during the Spring and Winter months.

Have Keys? Toss them into the Bowl; you’re not Driving anywhere!

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If you think for one moment that it is ever a good idea to visit tastings and drive, then these events are not for you. Make sure that you have either a designated driver or line up your intended means of transportation before sipping. Let’s be mindful of others and safe on the roads.

Read up on your Itinerary and know what to Expect

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Before you actually start your tours be sure to do a little research and get a feel for what direction the tastings will take. Which locations will be sampled, along with what varieties will be available. Doing this will help you know exactly what is in store for you and will give you a strong sense of how to plan other events around your tasting.

Unbeatable Tastes By Remarkable Curators

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When it comes to wine tasting in Paris, while it is about tasting different types of wine, it is also about pairing those wines with the correct fares. If you have done a great job in planning your Paris wine tour itinerary, then your guides will know exactly how to pair these for you. While this sounds simple, it can quickly become very complicated.

Follow Your Guide and Make The Right Turns

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If you have elected to visit a winery during your trip to this magnificent country, it is generally a good idea to find a guide that will help reduce travel time, simply because they know where to go for the best experience. There is only one right way to do wine, and that is to travel to France and enjoy an authentic tour.

For more information, please refer to the following pages:

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More About Our Baguettes Classes

Getting a bit technical during our Baguette Class in Paris

The French baguette, actually probably better known as the Parisian baguette has beome a true symbol of French popular gastronomy. A true icon of French life even - look around and you will see the Parisians strolling back home with their baguettes under their arm. But if you are French why would you learn how to do this? You can buy a baguette at any corner of Paris for about one Euro a piece.  But in our Baguette Class in Paris  you will learn how do this from scratch. It is somewhat technical, but also full of tips and tricks. But when you leave, it will have not secret left for you. From the original mix to the famous "scarification" through adding water to your oven through baking, you will see and do it all.

Learning more during your Baguette class in Paris: Croque Monsieur Bread and Brioche

This class is like all our other baking or cooking classes: totally hands-on. So you get to practice from beginning to end - and to taste at the end. But not only will you learn how to make Baguette, but you will also learn to make two more types of bread: the French Croque Monsieur bread. The basis for the classic French bistrot appetizer. And in your Baguette class in Paris you will also learn how to make your own Brioche. Probably the most indulgent bread you will find in France - if not the lightest ...

And you might learn some history during your Baguette Class in Paris

While you will learn the techniques to create - and get to taste - three classic types of French breads, you will also learn some of the stories on the origin of the baguette. Just beware it is still being quite hotly debated. What is for sure though is that the Baguette is absolutely part of today Parisian's life. A classic you will be able to take back home with you.

More About Our Wine and Cheese Lunch in Paris

Cheese and Wine in Paris

The pleasures we can derive from French cuisine can seem endless.  However two of the best known and loved French gastronomic heroes are French cheese and wine. Whether we talk about a Brie which actually comes from very close to Paris, to a creamy Camembert from Normandy, or a Comté from the Alps, French cheese has a delight for all palates. And of course, French wines are even better known whether from Bordeaux great wines or Burgundy sophisticated whites – all of which enthral wine lovers.  Well, at our course on cheese and wine in Paris you will come to appreciate that although each is delicious on its own, properly matched cheese and wine together can make the experience of each even more enjoyable and an absolute delight.

How to pair French cheese and wine

Because not all pairings are actually what people expect, at Le Foodist we have decided to call these experiences 'Daring Pairings'. Maybe because we like to step out of the ordinary to challenge our taste buds, but really all we try to do is give you the perfect match fo cheese and wine in Paris.  So not only will you learn how to select the best wine to go with your cheese, but you will also learn what are the big cheese families in France – there are actually only five, and this is one of the keys to great pairing. In discovering all these pairings of cheese with wine you will be convinced that indeed two things together can be better than the sum of their parts.

It is important to have fun with pairing cheese and wine in Paris

Beyond the tastings though, we have found that the best way to help our clients remember and re-use their experience is to vary the way to approach both wine and cheese.  That is why during our courses on cheese and wine in Paris we share sensory games and many an anecdote to bring the produce to life in your mind as well as on your palate. Overall we will feature four excellent wines, one Champagne and demonstrate to you how best each combines with cheese, letting your taste guide you along with our teaching.

Understanding cheese and wine pairing while in Paris

While for many top Parisian wine stores and restaurant wine lists can be confusing and even intimidating, we believe that after our lunch learning how to pair cheese and wine in Paris, you will feel much more comfortable navigating all of those.  And we sincerely hope your knowledge will help you unlock a door to a whole new world of enjoyment of French wine and cheese pairing.  At every step of the way our sommelier will also share unique tips and tricks to understand wines better and how culture and wine are so related in France; hopefully enriching your own experience as well.

And they do not have to do with what you will find in those markets. They have to do with when you can go shopping there. Open Air markets are only open in the morning. Typically from 8:30 am to 1:30 pm. And they are not open every day. As a matter of fact for the vast majority they are open either open every other day (Tuesday, Thursday, Saturday or Wednesday, Friday, Sunday), or sometimes only twice a week. 

This is the case of the Bastille Market (Metro Bastille and Metro Bréguet Sabin )which is open only on Thursday and Sunday morning. We like to send people there because it is a very big market with over one hundred vendors. And it has a nice stand of Crêperie in the middle. Here you get a video of a lady preparing a crêpe there; and you can get that crêpe for only 3 Euros!
There is only one Open Air market open every day of the week, it is called Marché Aligre (Metro Ledru Rollin or Metro Faidherbe Chaligny) which happens on the eponymous street. It is an interesting market because you find all kinds of quality in that market – the good, the bad and the ugly. There is also a nice covered market in the middle of it called Marché Beauveau – sometimes called Marché Beauveau Aligre. On the contrary, Covered Markets are open every day, and not just in the morning, but also in the late afternoon. Typically from 4:30 pm to 8:00 pm.

We are blessed with two markets close to where Le Foodist is located, so we can walk to a market every morning – sometimes it is the Maubert market, and sometimes it is the Monge market. Both nice with their own specififies. Last but not least, none of these markets is open on Monday. Do not sign-up for a Market Tour on Monday, you might never see that money again …

Choosing Ingredients in Paris

While all markets are different, they also have some things in common. First they work on specific schedules as explained before. But also you will find always at a minimum the following vendors: a Maraîcher – this is the name we give to people selling fruits and vegetables, a butcher, a fishmonger, a cheesemonger and a baker. Normally you will find several of each, with different levels of quality, organic or non-organic, local or not local (but mostly not local unfortunately).
And we explain how to recognize each of those of course during our Market Visits and Cooking Classes in Paris. But choosing ingredients can be daunting at first, because of the variety that is on display. A typical fishmonger will carry 20 different types of fishes, and as many shrimp and shelf fish varieties. A good cheese monger will easily carry up to 100 different types of cheese and obviously you could get over 100 different cuts of meat at a butcher (from the type of meat to the cut itself). And a normal Maraicher will carry between 50 and 100 fruits and vegetables as well.
This is what makes these markets so exciting – the variety of products, the beauty of their display, and the exchange you can have with most of the vendors. We give you tips though on how to make sure that exchange with the vendors go well – a few magic words, and everything will be fine!

Cooking in Paris

Obviously going to markets is nice, but actually knowing that you are going to cook what you find there is even more exciting. It is not uncommon for Parisians to buy a little bit too much food because they get so excited at the idea of cooking it all! But as most of us have hardly any space where we live, that can limit the enthusiasm sometimes. Because of the lack of space, Cooking in Paris can be quite different from cooking in the rest of France. And there are also dishes that are typically associated with regions which the Parisian will not cook at home – but taste when they visit friends or families in the various regions of France. However our kitchen has plenty of space, so we can cook traditional French dishes without a problem – whether they come from Paris or any region. And the most important part for us is to ensure that we share techniques much more than just recipes. As a matter of fact, we love to share a bit of the science behind what we do so people can better remember the “what” by understanding the “why”.

Sharing Stories

In November 2010, some experts from the UN cultural organisation, decided tha France’s multi-course gastronomic meal, with its rites and its presentation, fulfilled the conditions for featuring on the “world intangible list” of the UNESCO.
In this list you can find all kinds of cultural practices, including Mexico Day of the Dead festival for example. Importantly this is not suggesting French cuisine is better than other cuisines (even though we the French tend to believe that …). It is only saying that the gastronomic meal and what it entails is a very vivid cultural practice which people in France partake into on a very regular basis. That is why the same experts indicated that the French gastronomic meal is a “social custom aimed at celebrating the most important moments in the lives of individuals and groups”. And in that social custom, there are many parts: the attention we pay to the way we choose ingredients, how we pair wine with food, how many dishes we will present to our guests, how we lay the table, etc… But one big part of the cultural practice is that commensality (the fact of sharing the food) is always accompanied by sharing stories about …. Well, you would have guessed it, Food of course!
To us it is THE perfect example of how Food and Culture come together – actually we decide to share food is a considered a cultural practice. I would argue that it is true of all countries, regions, etc… As the way we relate to Food is such a big part of anybody’s identity. But as a result and to make sure you have the most genuine experience of French culture, after the a coking class in Paris at Le Foodist, you will share a gastronomic meal at a common table with your Chef and fellow participants to the class.

French Wine and Food Pairing

As mentioned above, one of the big cultural practices in France is choosing how to pair Wine and Food in general and Wine and Cheese in particular. We actually have a class which focuses specifically on this. As it is so important though, we always make sure we share white and red wines during our meals, chosen to pair well in our opinion with the food we cook. And being at the table together is a good opportunity to discuss about wine as well, with concepts such as “terroir” (to simplify, terroir means “what you do depends on where you are”) which are essential to grasp the way the French think about Food.
And all this will always go with a cheering “Santé” – which quite simply means, to your good health!

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