France is worldly famous for its gastronomy and natural refinement when it comes to food. This culture of bien manger is not reserved to the elites, and the typical day of an average French is punctuated by culinary traditions. Are you familiar with all of them?
The petit-déjeuner is the first meal of the day. France is one of the rare countries where people enjoy a sweet meal in the morning. No bacon and eggs here, it’s all about the French viennoiseries: croissant, pain au chocolat, pain aux raisins, and pain beurre-confiture. A lot of people walk (or cycle) to their closest boulangerie to get their viennoiserie fresh out of the oven.
Have you ever heard of the goûter? This is probably any schoolboy and schoolgirl’s favorite meal: a sweet snack the French enjoy around 4 or 4.30pm — right when french school finishes. Bread and hot chocolate, brioche, biscuits or even cake, the goûter is definitely a celebration.
Last but not least, the apéritif is all about togetherness: this light snack of peanuts, saucisson, olives and other tapas is a pretext for a nice drink — pastis, porto, clairette, rosé or beer — to whet one’s appetite.
Food is everywhere in France, even in the language. There are countless expressions in French that refer to food. Here are a few you can start adding to your vocabulary.
“Avoir un coeur d’artichaut” — literally “to have an artichoke heart” — is used to talk about someone who falls in and out of love very easily. To say “put the pedal to the floor,” the French use “appuyer sur le champignon” which translates as “to push on the mushroom.” And if someone tells you “tu es chou” — “you are cabbage” — they mean “you are cute!”
Although you can probably find French products in your home country, there is nothing like the real thing; so come over to France, throw your taste buds a party and improve your language skills all at once (we all speak better French after a glass of wine, don’t we?).
But where to start with so many culinary wonders and so little time? Do not fear, we have you covered with our bi-monthly « parenthèses gourmandes ». All boasting a different theme according to seasons, those gourmet interludes are catered by professionals bringing you the best French specialties. Our location is also a wonderful opportunity to discover Mediterranean flavours and local delicacies such as tapenade, farcis and socca. Gathering around food and drinks is always a great way to meet people and exchange on various topics. Thanks to our French classes, you will be able to do all of these things en français!