Lille would have to be one of the best foodie locations I’ve ever visited in France. There are loads of fantastic restaurants cooking traditional and modern cuisine, the bakeries and patisseries are exceptional and you can even find locally brewed beers. I wouldn’t mind spending a couple of weeks in Lille just to sample more of the food. There’s a good number of food markets too and my favourite is the Wazemmes open air food market held every Tuesday, Thursday and Sunday.
On Sale at the Market
The fruit and vegetables at Wazemmes looked so much fresher than what I find in my local markets. I don’t know if it was local but it was definitely fresh and seasonal.
This bread is one of my favourites in France. It’s quite heavy but wonderful with a smear of French butter.
Of course there were plenty of baguettes for sale too.
Lille’s Sunday Market
Along with incredible fresh produce, the Wazemmes market offers a huge variety of ready made meals which are ideal if you are shopping for a picnic. North African food is well represented with different slow cooked dishes with couscous, one corner had a number of Asian stalls, a few were selling paella but the market favourite seemed to be roast chicken and potatoes. That would be my favourite too.
I was surprised to see these prawn crackers or chips a la langoustine as they’re called in French. I haven’t seen those around since the 80s.
If you want something sweet you can go for North African/Middle Eastern treats like baclava or lokum (Turkish delight) but if you prefer the local speciality I suggest trying the Merveilleux which you can find everywhere around Lille including at the Wazemmes food market. It’s two discs of meringue sandwiched together with fresh cream and coated with grated chocolate. I think it’s safe to say the Merveilleux is my favourite French dessert of all time.
To get to Lille’s Wazemmes market, take the metro to Gambetta and follow the crowds or your nose to the main square where the market is held.
For more information on this great northern French city, read our post on taking a city break to Lille.1