Situated at the confluence of the Rhône and Saône rivers, Lyon, a city of more than 4,000 restaurants has long been regarded as the gastronomic capital of France. In the 19th century, female cooks known as Les Mères Lyonnaises started their own businesses, serving up simple, hearty cuisine from cheap cuts of meat – classic dishes that are still available today in authentic bouchon restaurants.

Read more: A gastronomic tour of the Rhône

Lyon’s gastronomic reputation took a new direction with the late Paul Bocuse, holder of three Michelin stars for a staggering 53 years and voted Chef of the Century in 1989 by Gault et Millau. As well as his legendary restaurant in Collonges-au-Mont-d’Or, ‘Monsieur Paul’ developed a chic brasserie concept, adopted by many innovative young chefs.

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Unmissable local dishes and produce in Lyon

  • Andouillettes de Lyon: cooked pork sausages spiced with onions and parsley.
  • Coussin de Lyon: sweets made from chocolate and almond paste.
  • Quenelles: light dumplings flavoured with fish, poultry, mushrooms or truffle.
  • Salade Lyonnaise: salad with bacon cubes, egg and croutons.
  • Tarte à la Praline Rose: pink praline tart.

Must do foodie experiences in Lyon

  • Indulge all your senses by browsing the fragrant and colourful stalls of the Halles Paul Bocuse, Lyon’s premier indoor food market. Visit website here.
  • Take a Lyon Food Tour to combine a unique cultural experience with great local food. Tours range from two to four hours and there’s even a vegan one. Visit website here.
  • Enjoy traditional bouchon fare at Daniel et Denise, beautifully prepared by chef Joseph Viola, who is a Meilleur Ouvrier de France. Visit website here.
  • Taste wines made in the heart of the city at Chai Saint Olive, Lyon’s first wine-producing cellar and creator of urban wines. Visit website here.
  • Discover the vineyards and producers of Beaujolais, just 30 minutes’ drive from the city, as well as the local olive oil and a variety of fruit vinegars at Huilerie Beaujolaise. Visit website here.

Article from Taste of France Issue Four.

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