The boulevard St. Germain is best known for its glamorous atmosphere and elegant shops. Its organic food venues? Not so much. Yet some of Paris’s oldest organic food venues can be found in this area. Back in 1989, the Raspail Market (boulevard Raspail between rues Cherche-Midi and Rennes) became the city’s first all-organic market. Today, swarms of foodies descend upon this outdoor market every Sunday morning to snatch up its magnificent bounty. The sprawling market carries almost every kind of food imaginable. Craving whole-grain, dairy-free, English muffins? Check. Wheatgrass juice? Check. Dried goji berries? Vegan pastries? Potato-and-onion pancakes hot off the griddle? Check. Check. Check. Naturally, fruits, vegetables and meats are also abundant. Another pioneer organic venue in the neighborhood is Guenmaï (6 rue Cardinale), a vegan-friendly Japanese restaurant founded in 1986. While the tiny restaurant/ grocery may not appear remarkable from the outside, its fans (including actress Natalie Portman), have high praise for its simple macrobiotic dishes. The menu changes daily, but look for the vegetable tempura, seiten skewers, and steamed fish. Serving food only during lunchtime, Guenmaï becomes a tea salon during the afternoons. Heading east along boulevard St. Germain, you’ll find a several organic groceries including La Nature à Paris (47 boulevard St. Germain) and Touch of Bio (30 boulevard St. Germain), both of which carry a wide range of organic products from cheese to diapers to wine. A slight detour off the boulevard takes you to Holy Planet (34 rue Serpente), an organic grocery that also makes fresh sandwiches and salads. If you prefer a sit-down meal, visit Les Cinq Saveurs d’Anada (72 rue du Cardinal Lemoine) a traditional-looking French café which boasts a 100% bio menu, except for the wild fish, and offers imaginative dishes that often include tempeh, seiten, and tofu.
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