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Le Beurre: Why Butter is Better in France

Why does French butter taste so good?

Frédéric BISSON

I hated butter when I was a kid, unless it was melted in mashed potatoes. Fast forward 20 years and here I am, living in France, regularly licking butter off my fingers while making tart crust or smooshing fat slices onto naked hunks of bread in the morning. Somewhere along the line, someone slipped me a sliver of Echiré and changed my world. There’s no going back once you’ve experienced the tender melt of cultured-cream butter on the tip of your tongue. But I wondered: what exactly makes this ubiquitous ingredient so good here?

Why does French butter taste so good?

JenSteele; jules

According to Luisa Weiss, author of My Berlin Kitchen and founder of the blog The Wednesday Chef, the easy answer is fat. “The main difference between American and European butter is that European butter has a higher percentage of fat than American butter,” she explained over the telephone from her home in Berlin. American butter averages 80 percent fat, while European standards hover around 85 and 87 percent, with the legal French minimum being 82 percent. It’s not a huge difference – we’re talking 5 to 7 percent – but it’s enough to give European butter a deeper, richer flavor than its American counterpart.

Why does French butter taste so good?

Luca Cerabona

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Posted in Food | 4 Comments »

January Events in Paris: Fête du Graphisme, Gueules de Parisiens, Cocktail Week & More

Isabelle Bonté, Sneakers

Isabelle Bonté, courtesy of Sneakers objets de désirs

The champagne has been poured and resolutions made, but January still has plenty in store. From Haute Couture Fashion Week to the always-anticipated soldes, it is a good month to be in Paris. Here are some of our other favorite events this month:

The third annual, five-week-long Fête du Graphisme kicked off this week and runs until February 16. Centered around the world of graphic design, with a collective exhibition entitled “Celebrate the City,” the fest too features projections, meet-ups, workshops, soirées, and more. For more details, peek here.

HiP Paris blog, January Events, Etienne Pouvreau

HiP Paris blog, January Events, Martin H. M. Schreiber

Etienne Pouvreau; courtesy of Martin Schreiber

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Les Pinces: A New-England-Style Lobster Joint with a Parisian Twist

HiP Paris Les Pinces lobster spread

Le Marais is considered by many to be the dining capital of Paris with choices abound. Varying from take-out hot dogs on the corner of rue Vieille du Temple to falafels on the iconic rue des Rosiers to up-and-coming hipster hangouts where the design is equally as important as the menu, choosing a place to dine is a culinary experience in itself. One group of French restaurateurs with a penchant for North American travel decided what the chic quartier needed was a splash of something different, and opened a lobster joint.

Steering away from the opulence that could be equated with going out for lobster in Paris and taking a cue from Northeast lobster restaurants they frequented on their travels, friends Damien Borjesson, Remy Bougenaux, Vivien Mathieu, and Louis Kerveillant opened Les Pinces (meaning “claws” in French) in November 2014.

HiP Paris Les Pinces montage

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