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Last week I was inspired by all the tiny madeleines I had enjoyed in tea rooms, crockery I liked in brasseries, and different sizes of glassware for wines, that I went off in search of supplies for my own kitchen.

I headed to Les Halles, which was the site of the very old central market for 800 years until it was moved to Rungis in 1971. In searching for a link about the history, I learned more than I had ever imagined. I love finding entirely new layers of history, and now want to seek out more detail! However, for a small peek at Les Halles in the 1960’s, here is a clip from Charade, where Audrey Hepburn meets Walter Matthau late at night.

Due to the focus on food and cooking in this area, it also became a great place to come for cookware and restaurant supplies. I had limited myself to two, but then found a third nearby!

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La Bovida, as you can see has been around for 90 years. It was two levels of everything under the sun for a professional kitchen, as well as their own spice line!

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I thought this was a pretty fun display, or Christmas decoration. 🙂

While I didn’t think a bag of spices was transportable, I did justify that a few euro for spice tin bearing their name and vintage design was necessary. 🙂

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The next stop was a. simon. A two store front, though single level, establishment of things needed to set up a café. There were both sides, cookware as well as the small details.

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Although very fun, I was unable to justify the need for a crêpe spreader thing. It only seemed to have one purpose. I may have to return for the miniature cocktail napkins (yes, smaller than standard) but I was unable to commit to a color! Great prices on wooden spoons, and spatulas! 🙂 Ahem.

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E. Dehillerin was incredible. A family run business since 1820, they specialize in copper for pots and have their own line of knives. While it would have been fun to get my hands on a tiny saucepan, uh, maybe next time. 🙂

When you walk in the door, you can go right or left, two aisles only. 🙂

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Everything was displayed in these wooden cubbies to the roof, accessible by wooden ladders. Smaller things were grouped in old metal loaf pans, or hanging from the ceiling.

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If your items are out of reach, or extremely heavy, a clerk goes around with you to gather things. Check out the size of this whisk!

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After you select your items, you take them to the desk. A handwritten inventory is written. You then take that to the counter, and a real receipt is printed where you pay. And finally, you return to the desk, where you present your receipt and your items are all packaged, ready to go. 🙂

Mini madeleine pan. Check!

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Do you ever wonder how many people, great chefs or friends of yours may have walked through this door? 🙂

La Bovida
36 rue Montmartre
Metro: Les Halles

a. simon
48-52 rue Montmartre
Metro: Les Halles or Étienne Marcel

E. Dehillerin
18 & 20 rue Coquillière
Metro: Les Halles

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