Until I moved to France, I had spent most of my time as an expat living in Montreal. If you’ve so much as dipped a toe in Montreal, then you know about the infamous Marché Adonis, the Lebanese grocery store, that carries everything from arabic coffee to pine nuts from the homeland, and where every employee will more often than not speak to you in arabic. You can say that hadn’t prepared me for living in a country where your eyes swell up with tears of joy at the sight of a man’oushe.
If you’ve ever lived in Paris, I am willing to bet you have suffered from Labneh cravings that could not be satiated. A while back, I wrote a checklist of food items to take with you when moving out of Lebanon. If you weren’t lucky enough to read it before you left for the city of love and Baguettes, and find yourself living in a world without Zaatar you will want to bookmark this post.
Here is a list of places where you will be able to satisfy your homesick tummy.
Les Délices d’orient
This store is THE oriental grocery store in Paris. You will find all the ingredients you could dream of and then some. Dried fruits and nuts, olives, spices, canned goods, fresh fruit, cheese and labneh, and even the occasional Arabic pop music CD (if you’re into that sort of thing). You will even find hollowed out zuchinis and eggplants, just waiting to be stuffed, not to mention yummy oriental sweets. Heads up, control your urges to buy everything in the shop, or you’ll walk out of there with an empty wallet.
52 avenue Emile Zola
At the opposite side of the spectrum, price wise, Sabbah has a great selection of Middle Eastern and North african dry foods. Go there for canned foods, spices, rice, nuts or grains and head for the nearby Marché d’Aligre to complete your shopping with equally fairly priced fresh produce.
140 Rue du Faubourg Saint-Antoine
Head here to satisfy cravings of Soujouk, Makanek and Basterma or to binge on their Fatayer, Sambousik and Bite sized Kebbeh. You may also want to give their house rose water and Ashta ice cream a try.
90 Boulevard Murat
Carrying Egyptian, Lebanese, Greek, and Turkish products, Ahramat Masr is sure to have any ingredient you need to complete a recipe.
75 Rue de Rochechouart
This store was recommended to me by a fellow lebanese foodie. It may look small, but it carries everything you could think of from Labneh to Chiclets gum.
78 Rue de Longchamp
Walk into this modern day oriental souk and allow yourself to be overwhelmed by the smell of spices lingering in the air. With products coming from Greece, Turkey, Armenia, Lebanon and even Russia, this charming grocery store is bound to fulfil your heart’s desire.
6 Rue Lamartine
With jars of olives sitting in the storefront inviting you in, it is impossible not to step into this cute store. The lovely staff are always willing to give you their 2 cents on recipes, ingredients and life in general. You will find all sorts of Lebanese ingredients, as well as ready-made food and oriental sweets.
36 rue Laos
Technically, this is an iranian store, yet it carries products from Turkey, Lebanon, Greece and Armenia, and even has a small corner reserved for Thai and Moroccan products. The catering half of the store produces Iranian and Lebanese specialties and I hear they make a mean hommos.
21, rue Brancion
I found many of these recommendations in a great book called Beyrouth in Sight, a great guide listing the best restaurants, hotels, shops, dance classes or Lebanese cultural spaces in Paris.
If you’re more of an online shopper then give one of these specialised e-commerce sites a try.
Online sinCe 2000 and delivering in more than 100 countries, Buylebanese.com offers a wide range of both food and non food products. Shipping to France will take between 2 to 5 working days and costs $19.5 for the first Kilo and $8.5 for every additional Kilo so factor that into the price before you order.
Libanus.com have been around for some 15 years now and if nothing else that attests to the endurance and quality of their services. Don’t let the dated interface kill your buzz and give these guys a try. Pick up your package at one of their relays and pay as little as $7 or splurge on the door to door express delivery at $26 for urgent cravings.
I hope you have found this list useful. If you have other recommendations on where to shop for Lebanese food products in Paris, please let me know in the comments section below.