The other day I was pondering all the semi-recent food trends that have swept the United States, or at least California. I can think of FroYo, bubble tea, and cupcakes, just to name a few of the most prominent. There are two things that Americans love: Food and Invention. We love a new idea, a fresh take on something previously seen as ordinary. Take fruit for instance – only Americans would think “hey, lets organize this fruit into a bouquet that people can eat, and call it ‘Edible Arrangements!” And think of Sprinkles Cupcakes, with their cupcake ATM! I can’t wait to see what crops up next… 3D printed food, anyone?
I’ve noticed that these food novelties aren’t quite as big here in Paris; The French are more protective of tradition, which is why you can find baguettes and pain au chocolat on literally any street corner. One exception is burgers, the un-sophisticatd meal you can eat with your hands, which weren’t always a staple on many Parisian menus like they are today. You can find bubble tea (for which I had a craving the other day), but usually tucked away in nondescript corners, and I have yet to see a single frozen yogurt establishment like Pinkberry or Yogurtland. As far as the cupcake trend goes, I would say it’s part of a larger tendency toward specialty sweet-shops, as opposed to general Bakeries. Popelini, for instance, specialises in fancy cream puffs, while l’Éclair de Genie makes uber gourmet éclairs that are literally a work of art.