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Eat Your Way Through Paris Without Spending Beaucoup Bucks - Europe on a Bite-Sized Budget

Eat Your Way Through Paris Without Spending Beaucoup Bucks - Europe on a Bite-Sized Budget
From The Kitchn - October 12, 2017

If there's one city in the world to blow the bank on food, it's Paris. It's easy to imagine raiding your savings account halfway through the trip; all it takes is a tap, tap, swipe on your banking app to move some funds from that rainy day account. Who needs savings when you are alive and hungry in Paris?

But it does not have to be that way. Even on the slimmest of budgets, Paris is still deliriously delicious. Indeed, some of its simplest pleasures are its most divine. For me, it's a baguette slathered in salted butter and stuffed with pungent Camembert; at just a few euros, it's either the first or last thing I have on each trip. For my husband, it's quiche. Still others wo not leave Paris without a classic crpe from a street vendor.

It would take a lifetime of exploring to find all the amazing and affordable foods in Paris. Or, we could just ask a few people likely to know: writers. Here are some smart, budget-savvy tips gleaned from their experiences, plus some of my findings as a hungry and cash-strapped repeat visitor.

1. Have a pique-nique.

There really is no bad time or place to have a picnic, including your hotel or Airbnb. Lindsay Landis, Nashville-based co-founder of food blog Love & Olive Oil, has spent many an evening in her Airbnb with the good company of crusty baguettes, salted butter, cheeses, and fruits picked up from the local markets. "Add a bottle of wine and you have yourself a perfect light supper feast, and much less expensive than going out for a full French dinner," she notes.

Still, there's just something so right about a meal en plein air in Paris.

"I personally think there is no better city in the world for eating outdoors." Andi Fisher, Portland-based storyteller behind Misadventures with Andi tells us. "I usually drop by a bakery for a crusty baguette (and an clair for dessert!); then a traiteur (like a deli) to buy sliced sausage, pt, and other meaty delights (my favorite is duck rillettes); and then the cheesemonger for a few chunks of creamy goodness. That, my friends, is all the makings for a perfect picnic."

Or, follow the lead of Beth Newberry, essayist and editor living in Bordeaux, who is smitten with the French love for a pique-nique. Her recommendation is to head to the march (she recommends the March Bastille) where "you can pick up your choice of cheese, olives, fruit, bread, saucisson sec (thick, dry cured sausage), sweet and savory tarts, and wine." It's worth supplementing your buys with a corkscrew and a knife, she recommends.

2. Go to the outer arrondissements.

Hop the Metro (or grab a bike!) and bust out of the tourist zone. "Chinatown is located in the 13th arrondissement and has some fantastic restaurants," Virginia Willis, James Beard award-winning author, chef, and editor, tells us. "Also, remember that Vietnam was a French colony so Vietnamese food can also be found in the areaand is incredible!"

3. Take advantage of happy hours and freebies.

4. Show street food some love.

5. When in doubt, go to Monoprix.

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