Since moving to Paris, it’s been difficult finding a good range of organic produce, maybe some gluten free pasta or bread, and just things that you can pop into trusty Holland & Barrett to buy in England. There are of course some shops, notably Naturalia, which are good and do just this, but I tend to find it never has everything I’m looking for… so, what to do?
Quite by chance, I encountered the answer when walking to work. On my way from Poissonière metro, I noticed a shop with vegetation in the window, which understandably caught my eye. Being a lover of shopping and as it was so handy, I made a mental note to return later. Turns out, it’s exactly what I’d been looking for.
Biocoop Dada. Apparently its 14th shop in Paris (source here), it revolutionises the appearance of the health shop. Spotless and spacious (unlike the tight aisles often found in city centre stores), the produce ranges from a whole wall of gluten free goodies, tasty tofu and soya products, quality meats, juices, and dispensers of all kinds of dried fruits and nuts.
But that is not all. There is also a great deli feel about the store, with a bakery, a cheese counter, what look like home-made ready meals, sweet treats and savoury snacks for lunch. Having treated myself to some vegan Montecaos to take home one day, I was pleasantly surprised by how tasty they were, and was keen to try the banana vegan muffin (which was, by the way, fab). Next stop: banoffee pie/carrot cake…
If you happen to be on Rue du Paradis at lunchtime and in need of some sustenance, Dada is also an option. As well as doing soup, tartines and salads, there’s the classic ‘plat chaud’. Choose from a range of amazing home-cooked foods, such as baked butternut, shredded parsnip (a lot nicer than it sounds, promise), mushrooms stir fried with garlic, courgettes cooked with chilli, cannellini bean puree, seasoned rice, polenta cakes, veggie flan… all really tasty, hearty, and wholesome. Especially as it gets increasingly more chilly (Paris seems to have forgotten autumn and skipped straight from summer to winter…), hot lunches are the way to go.
To top it off, their website is pretty funky, giving recipes for food, beauty and cleaning – the whole shebang!