5 Things I Learned at the Salon de l’Agriculture

The Salon de l’Agriculture is Paris’ annual extravaganza hosted at the one-and-only Porte de Versailles. It’s something like a cross between Epcot and a petting zoo. You can eat and drink your way around the world in the company of France’s finest – that includes livestock AND politicians. I’ve attended the Salon the past couple of years, and here are a few of the things that I’ve observed:

1. There are nearly as many regional variances of French cows as there are types of cheeses.

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Fun fact: French cows go “meuh!”

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2. The Salon de l’Agriculture is THE place to be if you’re an homme politique.

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Yes, that really is the president of the Republic. Kinda blurry, but Hollande’s got places to be!

3. Free samples: the ultimate crowd-pleaser.

In one afternoon alone, I sampled heart and kidney, strawberry milk, coconut ice cream, and rhum agricole.

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Mmm kidneys (they’re better than they sound)

4. Watching life happen in front of your eyes is a pretty beautiful thing.

I watched these chicks hatch from their eggs and take their first steps on this Earth. In the globalized world of agribusiness, it’s so easy to forget where our food comes from. The good thing about the Salon de l’Agriculture is that it connects consumers to the source. Now I know what farm-to-table really means!

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Look at those newborn baby chicks!

5. The world is large, and there is so much left to explore.

The Salon de l’Agriculture exposed me to so many different sights and sounds and flavors and smells. I left with the desire to drink Ti’ Punch on a beach in Guadeloupe. To hunt for white truffles in Tuscany. To visit the region that produces Reblochon (one of my favorite French cheeses).

Food and culture are so intwined. What we eat reflects our values, our way of life. There is nothing I enjoy more than trying whatever each type of cuisine has to offer – both at home and abroad.

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The infamous Ti’ Punch (don’t drink it too fast – it’s about 50% alcohol!!!)
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Tahitian man candy – I mean dancers
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Colorful Moroccan pastries
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Gettin’ spicy
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