The city you don't want to miss. Lyon
Although Lyon is the second largest economy in France, it does not feel that big at all. It feels quite the opposite with a calm and unpretentious feeling that you might experience in Paris. As the inhabitants say, you might be very rich, but you won’t show it. There are no expensive cars racing through the city, people don’t show off, but they will know their prices. Lyon may not be first in terms of economics, but it still holds Gourmand city status, thanks to its father Paul Bocuse (may he rest in peace) and many other great chefs from Lyon. But you will have to know where to find a good place, as some places are around the city like everywhere, but the gems are hidden well and mostly far away from the centre. Here, Ive shared some places that he discovered in the last three years by going there again and again, as well as some new ones suggested by locals, since those would be places I could never find myself. Why? It’s because the Lyonnais don't like to brag about their local places. They know where the good food is served, but that’s all. You have to be brave to take out a camera in those places to take pictures without asking. And keep in mind, only the bravest argue about food, as the locals do. They just know better, and it’s not that they think you’re stupid. No, you just don’t know what they know. And it is true, because they do know – for them, good food has been part of their everyday life since they were conceived.
Like other big cities in France, Lyon is developing. Just a few years ago, there were two coffee places with decent coffee, but now there are ... let’s say, enough to live a happy life. Of course, these are not the places that the locals in their golden years visit, as those would be considered too modern. But modern or not, they serve fantastic coffee, tea, juice, and meals suitable for a light lunch or Sunday brunch. It is not enough to take one trip, or even two or three to visit all the places in Lyon. It takes time to know the hills and the two rivers, walking on the long promenades just next to them. It takes a strong heart to climb up the hill’s hundreds of stairs, thousands of steps, to see the most spectacular views.
Coffee and food. DiploiD
Well hidden in the 1st arrondisment, this place is a true gem. Along with their nice coffee and other drinks, they have a great selection of breakfast consisting of many very satisfying dishes. Read https://www.storyaboutfood.com/travel/2019/1/11/lyon-coffee-musts. Address: 18 Rue de la Platière. www.diploid.fr
Coffee and food. Les Cafetiers
Serving coffee roasted by the famous Paris roastery Coutume cafe, they make it in the best version possible, but is not only about coffee there – they have a truly great lunch and brunch made from local and fresh products. Read more. Address: 36 rue Ferrandière. www.escafetiers.com/en
Coffee and food. Slake
Hidden in a very central street of Lyon, it’s not the first thing you think you might visit, but how wrong is that, since this place is a gem. Perfectly made coffee, tea, fantastic food and great atmosphere. Read more. Address: 9 rue de L'ancienne préfecture, Lyon. Www.slake-coffee.com
Coffee and sandwiches. Le Boite a cafe
Be prepared to squeeze in, as there is no day when the place is empty. Lucky are those who get in, others order their coffee to sit outside, even in late, late fall, or just order take away. In addition to classic coffee, they have something seasonal in the coffee, drink, and food aisle. Always great to grab a sandwich, and for those who prefer sweets – the cakes are amazing. Address: Rue de l'Abbé Rozier, Lyon. https://www.cafemokxa.com
Amazing pastries. Gouter
Up the hill, this bakery, run by the famous Sebastien Bouillet, is more than you could ever wish for. Their flan is like the king of flans, but that’s not all – kouign aman and chocolate salted butter buns are a must if visiting. Read more. Address: 16 Place de la Croix-Rousse, Lyon. https://www.chocolatier-bouillet.com
Bread and pastries. Partisan
This place, well hidden in a small street of the 4th arrondisment, is worth all of the hundreds of steps up and down, because, at Partisan, they make the breads, and the selection is just unbelievable, using organic flour and natural leaven. Read more. Address: 2 Rue du Chariot d'Or, Lyon. www.partisanboulanger.com
Food and all. La Commune
A place where local, small street food stalls meet, ranging from Asian inspired burgers to éclairs, where, let me tell you, the chorizo éclair is king. This is a great project bringing together local community, producers, and good food. Read more. Address: 3 rue Pré-Gaudry, Lyon. www.acommune.co
Pastry and light lunch. Jeannine & Suzanne
A mixture of American and French, they serve some American inspired drinks and foods, but the pastries - they are, oh so French! Read more. Address: 34 Rue Sainte-Hélène, Lyon. www.jeannine-suzanne.com
Wine and apperitif. Muraato
The greatest wine bar in the city, where Romain, the owner, is king of finding rare and exceptional wines, and a good selection form Corsica, too. Read more. Address: Lyon, 7 Rue Charles Dullin, Lyon. Www.http://muraato.com
Local food at its best. Cafe Terroir
It is so hidden in the deepest corner of the smallest street that you have to know the place, but once you know, you never forget. Very local, typical Lyonnais food. Read more. Address: 14 Rue Amboise, Lyon. www.cafeterroir.fr
Food and shopping. Las Halles de Lyon Paul Bocuse
Paradise of food, one might say. Others – a trap. Introduced to Lyon by the chef and master Paul Bocuse himself, this place is all you ever wanted, if looking for traditional French cuisine, if looking for lots of laughter with oyster in your mouth and a wine glass in your hand. Read more. Address: 102 Cours Lafayette, Lyon. www.halles-de-lyon-paulbocuse.com
More places to visit
Le Kitchen Café – reliable sources say their food is amazing as well as their pastries. Breakfast needs no reservations, dinner – always. Address: 34 Rue Chevreul, Lyon. www.lekitchencafe.com
Le café du Peintre - very local, very special, and traditional bouchon Lyonnais. One of the best in town, and not at all in the centre. But do go there.
Reynon – chic, golden and shiny, classic as classic can be with all kind of pâté, puff pasty in meat and meat in puff pasty, appetizers, cheese, and so much more. Locals come here to find something for their champagne and everyone already knows everyone. A truly beautiful place. Address: 13 Rue des Archers, Lyon.
L'Estanco – fresh, slow press juices, smoothies, Buddha bowls, and healthy food. It’s small, it’s cozy and it’s tasty. Organic. Address: 4 Rue Pierre Corneille, Lyon. www.estancodumarche.fr
Story and pictures: Signe Meirane
Camera: Sony Alpha 7s