“The heart and soul of this place is really the relationships that we have with our artisan food producers,” says Marjorie Taylor, co-owner of The Cook’s Atelier in Beaune, France. So it’s no surprise that, for Marjorie and her daughter Kendall Smith Franchini, a trip to the local market is a weekly ritual they cherish. Here, a glimpse into how the two cooks do their shopping.
In true French style, a recent Saturday afternoon market trip with Marjorie and Kendall began at the cheese shop, Alain Hess Fromagerie in Beaune. There, Marjorie and Kendall explored the wide variety of French cheeses, making their selections by choosing familiar favorites from the region as well as relying on the expertise of the cheesemonger – with much sampling, of course!
After the cheese selections were made, the duo strolled over to the large farmers’ market next to the landmark Hospices de Beaune. Being a small town in the center of a large agricultural region, the bustling market is a place for far-flung neighbors to reconnect and share updates. Vendors sipped coffee and rose wine and everyone was buzzing about the surprise second berry season that some local farms experienced at the beginning of winter.
“We’ve very fortunate to have a beautiful, year-round market in Beaune,” explained Marjorie. “Our favorite part of the market is getting to see the producers that are there. Some of them come from very close to Beaune; many of the farms are within ten minutes of town.”
Marjorie and Kendall have close relationships with many of the farmers and they go out of their way to buy from people who are growing he produce, not just the wholesalers. Conversations revolved around what was fresh, what was picked when, and what the farmer knew was especially good that week. Certain farmers, like their friend Yan, who is also a shepherd and cheesemaker, set aside seasonal treasures he knew that Marjorie and Kendall would appreciate.
After picking up their bounty, Marjorie and Kendall made one more stop at the local butcher, Monsier Vossot, to pick up meat and charcuterie.
On this particular today, they purchased a cote de boeuf to cook up for friends and family later on. “We’re so fortunate to have so many people here in Burgundy that take pride in what they make and grow,” said Marjorie.
“And we’re even more fortunate to count them as our friends,” added Kendall.
See more of our day spent with The Cook’s Atelier, including Marjorie and Kendall’s French feast, in the video below.