15 best gifts from France
What are the most interesting gifts and souvenirs can be brought from France? What are the prices in souvenir shops and supermarkets? How to choose the best? Where to go shopping? Read the answers in our article – the top15 top rating.
Prices and other information in this article are relevant for March 2020.
Before planning purchases, you need to remember that not all items are allowed to export from France, and not all items can be imported into Russia. Some things can be transported, but in limited quantities. For some have to pay duties. Details in our article "What can not and can be removed from France".
In this article we will consider simple gifts and souvenirs. We do not touch the fashionable brands of perfume, clothes and accessories. This is a topic for a separate article. Here we will consider gifts for an ordinary tourist.
Where to buy gifts and souvenirs?
Most of the interesting gifts is more convenient and cheaper to buy in the supermarket. And the greater the supermarket, the better. Look for the nearest Big Auchan (Auchan) or Karrefour (Carrefour).
If you are going to buy a lot of gifts at a time, it is beneficial to go to a hypermarket on a taxi. As with us, in France, the largest hypermarkets are on the periphery, and do not get to them on the subway. Taxi costs are justified by low prices in the hypermarket. Tariffs See our article "Taxi in France – prices and rules".
Top 15 best gifts
15. Makarons and other sweets
France is the birthplace of dozens of tasty sweets and desserts, including the Russians and famous Russians and famous cream-brule and macarons for the whole world (in the photo nearby, click on the photo to enlarge).
Telling detail about the sweets in this article there is no point. Read our article "The Best French Sweets". We will only add that in France there is a good chocolate, although he did not decrease the world glory, such as Belgian or Swiss.
Now let’s stop at technical and legal points. Export of sweets from France and import to Russia without restrictions. No packing requirements.
Try French sweets best in confectionery or bakery, good in France they are at every turn. But for the transportation of home freshly baked sweets fit poorly – quickly worry, and the expiration date is minimal (usually 1 day).
For sweets for home it is better to go to a large supermarket. Of course, factory cakes are not so tasty, but they have an acceptable shelf life. In addition, buying factory packaging, you know exactly the date of production and the expiration date.
Most tourists are content with a big packaging Makaronx. They have a shelf life of 3-4 days, if fresh bakery. Factory can reach a month.
Prices for sweets – from 5 to 30 euros per kilogram.
fourteen. Marseille Soap (Savon de Marseille)
It so happened that it was Marseille became the main in France by the center of the production of soap and other household goods of hygiene. Recall at least the famous brand "Le Petit Marseillais" ("Little Marselin").
The first written certificate of the production of soap in Marseille refers to 1370. Traditional Marseille soap boils from seawater from the Mediterranean Sea, Olive Oil and Sea Plant ash. Now olive oil has become optional, the use of other vegetable oils is allowed.
This Savon de Marseille is boiled only in Marseille, use the traditional method of cooking in the boiler, not add dyes or flavors, use only vegetable oils.
There are two types of classic Marseille soap. The first is from olive oil (green color). Second – from palm oil (white color). Both types are considered equivalent.
You can buy Marseille Soap in any major supermarket throughout France. Marseille Soap is customary to sell large blocks – 300 or 600 grams. Previously, briquettes were distributed on 1 or even 5 kilograms, but now it is rare. Small pieces of 100 grams are now gaining popularity.
Price per briquette 300 grams – 4-5 euros.
13. Casons (sausage)
In the word "Saucisson" ("Sosikon") the French call any sausages, sausages, sausages. France – Motherland of hundreds of types of sausages, but most of them are fresh and require storage in the refrigerator, and the shelf life is only a few days. For transportation home they are not suitable.
However, there are several famous species of smoked and dried sausages that can be brought home.
Saucisse de Morteau – These are smoked sausages from the Franches-Komte region in the east of France. Taste nice smoked. Home External Feature of this Saucisse de Morteau – At one end, the wrapper sausage is fixed with a wooden stick. Price – 12-15 euros per kilogram.
Rosette de Lyon – Famous raw sausage from Lyon. She is made of pork legs, pepper, garlic, nutmeg and other spices. Exposure – 30 days. The taste is saturated and very interesting, but not all Russians have to do. Price – from 10 to 18 euros per kilogram.
Saucisson de l’Ardeche – sausage from the Ardesh region, that in the south-east of France. Usually the shell of this sausage during ripening (28 days) is covered with white mold. Make this sausage from pork, the taste of bright meat, spices usually put a minimum. Price – from 15 to 25 euros per kilogram.
Naturally, this is not a complete list of famous French smoked and dried sausages. Come in the supermarket, try, choose.
12. Dishes from Cafe de Flor
Cafe de Flor (Cafe de Flore) – Cafe Cafe Paris. Once this cafe loved Ernest Hemingway and Pablo Picasso. French philosophers, writers and poets were gathered here: Remy de Gurmont, Charles Moras, Georges Batay, Robert Desnos.
If culture and art are close to you, then come to this cafe, without a doubt his atmosphere will like. Cafe is located in the 6th district of the city on the corner of Saint-Benua Street and Boulevard Saint-German. Getting the easiest way to subway station Saint-Germain-Des-Pres- (4th line).
For memory, you can buy themed souvenirs Cafe de Form: cups, glasses, glasses, kettles, sugar bowls, chairs for milk, white saucer with the print name of the cafe. There are also handles, openers and other souvenirs.
The price of the branded cup – 30 euros, a glass for wine – 35 euros.
Some tourists who are sorry for money for souvenirs, simply take sugar or chocolates in branded packaging cafe. Also souvenirs why not.
eleven. Foie Gra (Foie Gras)
Fua-Gra – this is a duck liver, which is abused forcibly, so that its liver has become a fatal and increased 6-10 times. Sounds scary? It is not surprising that in many countries fua-gras prohibited by laws. In Russia is allowed, so you can safely carry home. By the way, it was for the same reasons that fua-gras did not hit our ranking even the first ten.
Pay attention that fua gras is the liver. Most tourists want to bring not the liver itself, but a pate or mousse from this liver. Therefore, you do not need to take the first jar in the supermarket with the inscription Foie Gras. Need to figure out what kind of product in front of you.
Foie Gras Entier is a solid liver. Foie Gras – these are slices of liver, placed with each other. Pate de Foie Gras is a foie gras pate. Mousse de Foie Gras is a moss of fua-gras, where not less than 50% of the product. Parfait de Foie Gras is a dense moss of fua-gras, where at least 75% of the product.
If you see the word "TRUFFE", then it is a pate with the addition of truffles, the price will be above. If you see the word "canard", then from duck liver. If the word "OIE", then from the goose liver. Prices for duck and goose foa-grams are approximately the same.
On the Passat Bank there should always be the content of FUA-gras in percent. Usually 50% or 30%. Paste is usually sold in tin cans, net weight – 70, 130, 200 grams.
Price per paw 50% 200 grams – 12-15 euros. For pate 30% 200 grams – 9-12 euros.
ten. Tropeziennes (Tropeziennes)
Famous leather sandals that first appeared in the Saint-Tropez resort on the Azure coast of France. Tropepiens developed Dominic Rondini in 1927, he founded the Rondini brand. The Rondini family still owns the business, and they are doing their trails only in the Saint-Tropez and only manually.
Please do not confuse two interesting gifts – Tropeziennes sandals and the famous Tarte Tropezienne cake. Both are named by the resort of the Saint-Tropez, but the cake home will definitely do not bring up quickly.
Original tropeynes from Rondini stand from 120 to 200 euros per couple. Now they can be bought not only in the Saint-Tropez, but also in some stores in Paris. You can order in the online store Boutique.rondini.FR with delivery to the hotel.
Travelings of other brands are cheaper – from 40 euros per couple. Now in souvenir shops there are many triphesins of Chinese origin at a price of 10 euros. We certainly do not advise them. It is unlikely that they are made of genuine leather. And real trapsens should only be made of genuine leather.
nine. Creme de Marrons
Chestnut cream (or pasta) – a popular product in France, which is almost never found in Russia. Previously, I did not meet at all, but in recent years it began to sell in online stores, and it was also brought in limited quantities on the regiments of Moscow Auchans.
Classic Creme de Marrons De L’Ardeche make chestnut, sugar and vanilla. It is consumed on bread, with pancakes and as a topping for ice cream. Also used in cakes, cakes and other baking. In stores there are mixtures of soft milk chocolate and chestnut paste, also very tasty.
In Paris, there is an Angelina cafe, located in Les Boutiques du Palais. Their corporate drink – hot chocolate with chestnut cream topping. Drink can not only try in a cafe, but also buy a gift set.
Creme de Marrons De L’Ardeche 325 grams are most often found in stores, price – 2.5-3 euros. There are packages 1 kilogram, the price is 7-8 euros.
eight. Strong drinks – Calvados, Armagnac, Chartrez, Kuanto
From strong French drinks primarily on the mind comes cognac. However, in France a lot of other interesting strong alcohol.
Calvados (Calvados) – This is Brandy from Normandy, which is obtained by distillation of apple or pear cider. The taste is very interesting. Exposure in oak barrels – from 2 years, fortress – 40%. Price – from 25 euros per bottle of 0.7 liters.
Armagnac (Armagnac) – A sturdy drink from the state chamber, which is obtained by distillation of wine from grapes Voi Blanc. Unlike brandy, Armagnac distils only once. Exposure in oak barrels – from 2 years, fortress – 40%. Price – from 30 euros per bottle of 0.7 liters.
Chartreuse – This is the most famous French Herbal and Spice Liquor. You can say: "envy, Colonel Sanders!". The secret of this set is carefully guarded. There is green Chartresses (55%), there is yellow Chartresses (43%). Price – 40-50 euros per bottle of 0.7 liters.
Kuanto (Cointreau) and Grand Marnier Grand – These are famous orange Lickers of France. Price – 20 euros per bottle of 0.7 liter.
7. Dijon Mustard (Moutarde de Dijon)
Many believe that the mustard (sauce) was invented by the French. No, it’s not so. Mustard invented the Romans and brought with them in Gallia. But it is Gallov and then the French mustard gained special love.
Historically, the best mustard was produced in Burgundy. The capital of the region is the city of Dijon, hence the name "Dijon mustard". Mention of the supply of mustard from Dijon to the Royal Table of Philip VI date back 1336. And the modern taste of the Dijon mustard found in 1856, when Jean Najon from Dijon was replaced by a vinegar to the sour juice of immature grapes.
The classic Dijon mustard consists of a mustard seed paste (Brassica Juncea), a juice of unclear grapes and white wine. Spices can be added to give a special taste. Naturally, the Dijon mustard is very different in taste from that mustard of Russian production that you can buy in our stores.
Unfortunately, the Dijon mustard as a product does not have a protective status of PGI. Therefore, in France, any mustard on Dijon recipe has the right in France, and does not matter in which region it is made.
Price jar of Dijon mustard 200 grams – 1-1.5 euros. When buying large packages (from 1 kg), the price is 2.5-3 euros per kilogram.
6. Real Cognac
Cognac (Cognac) – world famous strong drink from France. This brandy is produced only in the Sharanta region, which in the south-west of France.
In France, strict laws for the production of brandy. It is made from the local grapes of the Uni Blanc, distillation is carried out twice and only in copper cubes with old methods. And even the size of these cubes is strictly determined by law. Exposure in oak barrels – from 2 years. And barrels can only be used from oak from the field of limousine or the TRONSAY Forest.
Cognac gradations: v.S. – 2 years, V.S.O.P.(Reserve) – 4 years, Napoleon – 6 years old, XO – 10 years.
In France, about 200 brandy manufacturers. The largest are considered: Courvoisier, Hennessy, Martell, Remy Martin. However, any other brandy in France is great. You can take any drink with the inscription "Cognac", do not make mistakes.
Price – from 30 euros per bottle.
Some tourists are very surprised when they see the inscription "Champagne" on the label. Perplex that it is cognac from champagne? Or brandy and champagne do in one place? In fact, one of the areas where the real brandy is doing is called "Champagne". This is a completely different champagne. Just coincidence of names.
5. Takes, Mariner, Scarf
These three clothes elements are considered symbols of Paris. Berets and Mariniers Real Parisians are infrequently worn, and scarves are with pleasure.
Berets are now sold mainly for tourists in souvenir shops. And unlikely to meet the produced in France takes, more often there are Chinese. Price – from 4 to 8 euros.
Mariner is a vest that French sailors are worn, on it 21 strip in terms of Napoleon’s victories. And with the original French vests, white stripes should be 2 times thicker blue. Mariner’s vest has become popular since Coco Chanel began to use it in his collections.
Cheap vests from China for 10-15 euros are also available, and French origin vests for 40-50 euros and even more expensive. Saint James vests cost from 80 euros.
Parisian scarves are worn with pleasure. And for a good French scarf, it is better to go to the souvenir shop, but in the clothing store. Scarf can cost from 10 to 1000 euros depends on the material. There are very cheap Chinese scarves from polymeric materials. There are expensive scarves from Silka or cashmere.
And remember the main thing! If it takes on behalf of yourself, the vest and scarf, then you will look ridiculous in Paris.
4. French wine
In France 27 000 wineries. Nobody considered the number of varieties of wine, but alleged about 100,000. In addition, the wine of various years of crop has a different taste. Understand all the diversity with a simple tourist unreal. And whether it is necessary to become an expert to buy a couple of bottles?
How to buy good wine in france? Answer: Focus on the price and region of origin.
Wine of good quality costs 10 euros per bottle. Cheaper wine take not advise.
Bordeaux (Bordeaux) – this is the largest winery region of the country. Bordeaux region is famous primarily with red wines from grapes of Cabernet varieties.
Burgne (Bourgogne) – This is the homeland of elite wines, the price of 10 euros or less from the Burgundy wines is extremely rare. Basically, it is red wines from grapes of varieties "Chardonna" and "Pinoto-Noir".
SENSERRE (SANCERRE) – This is a region in the center of the country. Sanser is famous for white wines from grapes "Sauvignon Blanc". Such wine is usually from 20 euros and more expensive.
Perhaps these three famous regions we will advise first of all. Of course, "the taste, there is no comrades. Probably, every fan of French wine will advise his list.
You can buy good wine in the usual Auchan, Carrefour or Monoprix supermarket. Everywhere the range of wines will be wide enough.
3. Souvenirs with the Eiffel Tower
How to leave France without a small and cute souvenir with the main symbol of the country – the Eiffel Tower. Main options for such souvenirs: Magnets, key rings, miniatures.
I do not recommend the keychain, as it will prick the skin with sharp edges, and in addition it is very short-lived. Magnets – an excellent choice, now in French souvenir shops you will find a giant assortment.
Miniature – a great option, but you need to decide on the size. Most often there are thumbnails with a height of about 15 centimeters. There are mini-options about 10 centimeters, there are large up to 40 centimeters. The price of miniatures depends not only on the size, but also on the material – plastic cheap, bronze or brass expensive.
If you get to France in winter, then on any Christmas fair you can buy a snowball with the Eiffel Tower. Very colorful but expensive.
The price for the magnet – 0.5-1 euro, depends on the size.
Price per key chain – 0.5-1 euro.
The price for the thumbnail – from 0.5 to 5 euros, depends on the size.
Price per snowball – from 5 to 50 euros, depends on the origin and size.
2. French cheeses
France has more than 1,200 varieties of cheese. Many varieties are famous for the whole world: Roquefort, Camembert, Brie, Münster.
To tell in detail even the best varieties on this page there is no point. Read our detailed article "The Best French Cheeses".
Now let’s stop at technical and legal points. First, according to customs norms of the Russian Federation, any product of animal origin can be imported only in factory packaging. If you get to selectively check, then cheese can confiscate, and even get fine.
Secondly, there is a restriction on the import of animal products – no more than 5 kilograms per person. Please note that this is the total mass of all animal products in the baggage.
Some tourists think that it is possible to import 5 kilograms of each product, for example 5 kg of cheese + 5 kg of sausages. NO. All products of animal origin in the amount should not weigh more than 5 kilograms. If you get on a selective check, then with the advantage of such products not to avoid trouble.
Within these limits carry cheeses in their pleasure. Prices for good cheese in France – from 7 to 30 euros per kilogram. Some varieties can cost up to 50 euros per kilogram.
1. Present champagne
Most Russians are used to drinking champagne for holidays. However, few people boast that saw present champagne – French sparkling wine from Champagne province, which is 160 kilometers east of Paris.
Present champagne made from a mixture of grape varieties of Chardonnay, Pinot Liea and Pinoto-Noir. This grape costs about 7 euros per kilogram, plus the collection of this grapes should be made only manually. Bottles for real champagne cost weekly, beverage excerpt – about 3 years. As a result, the cost of drink is very high. It is believed that worthy champagne cannot cost 20 euros.
In the champagne area, about 2000 Wine malls that have full right to produce sparkling wine with marking "Champagne". Among the wineries there are no leaders, there are no very common brands. Advise some definite brand difficult. If you read the opinion of experienced foreign tourists, they advise you to buy a bottle for sample in the supermarket, and then buy, if you like.
In France (and in all EU countries), the name "Champagne" is allowed to use only for wines from the champagne province. So there will be no problems to distinguish the real champagne from simply sparkling wine. Take any bottle with the inscription "Champagne", the question is only in price!
The price of a bottle of real champagne begins from 12 euros and comes to 1000 euros per bottle of 0.75 liters.
It is important and useful to know
– If you learn French, then a very interesting gift will be comics about Asterix and Obelix or Tintin. Learn the language for such comics is a pleasure;
– Thematic souvenirs dedicated to the famous French are also popular: Napoleon’s figurines, cups with Monta paintings, Dumas and Verne. Read our article "10 of the most famous French";
– If they were aimed at alcohol, then do not forget about trade constraints. Details in our article "Alcohol in France – prices and rules";
– What hours waiting for a trip to France besides gifts, read in our detailed article "How much money to take to France".
Successful purchases in France, and read our interesting articles about this country (List of articles below).