France in Vancouver

Photo from the Pied-à-Terre website

Photo from the Pied-à-Terre website

From Vincent Cassel to tea and pastries at Ladurée, the reasons to embrace life as a Francophile are plentiful. While feeding this love may typically involve a flight to Charles de Gaulle, satiation of this desire does not have to involve a stamp in your passport as Vancouver boasts an impressive array of all things French.

Photo from Les Amis Du Fromage website

Photo from Les Amis Du Fromage website

Les Amis Du Fromage
1752 West 2nd Avenue
Vancouver, British Columbia
Phone: (604) 732-4218

843 East Hastings Street
Vancouver, British Columbia
Phone: (604) 253-4218

Founded by mother and daughter team Alice and Allison Spurrell, this gourmet shop stocks hundreds of types of cheese from all over the globe, including French unpasteurized and AOC varieties. Adding to the gourmet picnic fare is a selection of charcuterie, including duck rillettes, house made preserves, and fancy cheese knives.

For those who wish to learn a little more about French cheese, the shop also offers classes, including Vive la France on October 29, 2014 that highlights some of the best cheese that France has to offer, while pairing them with wines from various regions of the country.

The Hastings Street location also offers meals to take home including custom cheese trays, freshly made soups, fondues and beef bourguignon by Chef Joe Chaput, a 20-year veteran of the Vancouver restaurant scene.

Photo from the Faubourg website

Photo from the Faubourg website

Faubourg
2155 West 41st
Vanocuver, British Columbia
Phone: (604-266-2156)

769 Hornby Street
Vancouver, British Columbia
Phone: (604) 267-0769

Park Royal South, West Vancouver
Phone: (604) 922-7920

These three locations serve to deliver an authentic Parisian experience by experimenting with new tastes, seducing patrons with impressive pastries, and encouraging visitors to indulge in the pleasures that these superb delicacies can offer. Stop in for breads baked from traditional French recipes, sweet Viennoiserie, stunning macarons, and a variety of cakes and pastries that resemble art more than they do dessert.

If you’re in the mood to break out your finest brunch attire, pull on your gloves and head to the Kerrisdale Village location for a meal of tartine à la pissaladière, an open face sandwich with caramelized onions, feta and olive tapenade, along with confit duck legs with mashed potatoes, seasonal vegetables and fig sauce.

Photo from the Pied-à-Terre website

Photo from the Pied-à-Terre website

Pied-à-Terre
3369 Cambie Street
Vancouver, British Columbia
Phone:(604) 873-3131

Minimalist and uncluttered, this neighbourhood bistro offers an intimate experience with seating for 30, and an overall focus on quality and simplicity. Chef Andrey Durbach and business partner Chris Stewart opened their first restaurant over a decade ago, and presently, the duo own and operate four unique dining destinations in distinct pockets of the city.

This venue is open for dinner seven nights a week, and diners can partake in succulent offerings like milk fed veal shortribs with lobster and spring onion mashed potato, and steamed mussels Basquaise with chorizo, smoked paprika and piquillo peppers. The wine list is comprised of an impressive selection of French beauties that can be paired throughout various courses during the meal.

Photo from the Alliance Française de Vancouver

Photo from the Alliance Française de Vancouver

Alliance Française de Vancouver
6161 Cambie Street
Vancouver, British Columbia
Phone: (604) 327-0201

If your memories of passé composé are a little fuzzy, this centre is partially comprised of a team of native French speakers who hold special credentials for teaching French as a foreign language. The class sizes are small and the prices reasonable, sitting at $390 for adult classes (4 hours a week for 7 weeks), along with classes for kids and teens.

While classes are one aspect of the centre, this organization has been promoting interest in French culture and language since 1904 with an extensive library, and cultural events like French film screenings, performing arts and fine art exhibitions.

Image from The Vancouver French Language Meetup Group website

Image from The Vancouver French Language Meetup Group website

The Vancouver French Language Meetup Group
Various locations
Vancouver, British Columbia

Once your French skills are up to par, join the conversation with this social group that provides a focus on the love and practice of the French language. These gatherings are open to all ages and levels of French, so no reason to be shy.

Allons-y!

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