• Menu
  • Menu
Mercière street

Lyon, capital of gastronomy

What could be better than a stopover in Lyon to enjoy its generous and tasty dishes! And yes…did you know that? The Capital of the Three Gauls has also been “the world capital of gastronomy” since 1935!

1) Lyon’s rich and unique culinary history…

Lyon’s gastronomy is famous in France and around the world for its rich culinary traditions that go back centuries!

A strategically important historical city at the crossroads of Europe’s trade routes, its key position has fostered the development of its rich and varied cuisine.

Its cuisine has been made famous by famous chefs such as Paul Bocuse, Mathieu Viannay and Auguste Escoffier. But it was first and foremost the city’s women, “Les Mères Lyonnaises” (translated The Lyonnais Mothers), who shaped its reputation over the years, from the 18th century onwards. These were women of character, outstanding cooks who acquired their talents working in bourgeois kitchens. These included the renowned Mère Brazier, who was the first woman to be awarded three Michelin stars in 1933. Or the famous Dame Guy, owner of a guinguette in La Mulatière in the mid-18th century, who became famous for her matelote d’anguille (eel stew), which even the Empress Eugénie enjoyed, and whose dish was featured in the 1859 Guide Joanne.

In the 19th century, Lyon’s reputation for generous, uncomplicated, family-style cooking was enhanced by the opening of numerous bouchons lyonnais: traditional restaurants serving authentic local dishes. These bouchons, which can be found in every corner of the city, have become gastronomic institutions, preserving the city’s traditional recipes.

The 20th and 21st centuries also saw the international expansion of Lyonnais gastronomy, with Paul Bocuse in particular acting as its French and international ambassador!

2) … which explains its current national and international gastronomic renown

-Lyon is home to a number of “Bouchons Lyonnais” that combine tradition and culinary excellence at all price levels.

Lyon boasts 20 Michelin-starred restaurants. Among them are those of the emblematic chef Paul Bocuse, Georges Blanc and Christian Têtedoie.

-The Cité Internationale de la Gastronomie, located on the exceptional Hôtel Dieu site, is a superb showcase for Lyon’s culinary arts.

-Every year, the SIRHA trade show brings together over 200,000 French and international gastronomy professionals.


Auberge de Paul Bocuse

Auberge de Paul Bocuse in Collonges-au-Mont-d’Or

Source: https://www.visiterlyon.com/se-regaler/restaurants-et-gastronomie/grandes-tables/restaurant-paul-bocuse

3) What’s there to taste in Lyon?

Warm, tasty and traditional, get ready for the “Marathon des bouchons lyonnais” with its many local specialities:

Do you love good, quality meat?

You’re in for a treat with the many varieties of local delicatessen and local meats!

– Saucisson lyonnais: Made with small cubes of fat and finely chopped lean meat. Ideal for building up your strength before a day’s walking!

-Black pudding: Lyon’s black pudding is a specialty made with pork blood, pork fat, onions and spices. It is often grilled or baked, and served with sautéed apples.

-Andouillettes: Sausages made from seasoned, grilled pork tripe. Delicious with mustard sauce.

-Quenelles: Made with meat or fish, enjoy them with a Nantua sauce (made with cream, crayfish and cognac) or a tomato sauce.

-Pâté en croûte: often garnished with foie gras and poultry

-Cardoons with marrow: Vegetables from the artichoke family cooked in stock, then gratinated with beef marrow.

Sapeur’s apron: Breaded and fried pieces of beef stomach.


A Lyonnais table with the best ingredients of Lyon's regional food

A perfect Lyonnaise table!

Source : https://www.lyonresto.com/restaurant/Petit-lexique-du-Bouchon-Lyonnais-pour-gastronome-averti/13976

Other suggestions between starters and desserts for an explosion of flavours

-Lyonnaise salad: Lettuce, bacon, poached eggs and croutons. Drizzled with a wine vinegar vinaigrette.

La cervelle de canut: Fresh cheese mixed with herbs, garlic, olive oil and vinegar, served as an aperitif or starter with fresh bread.

Bugnes: lightly sweetened doughnuts, fried and sprinkled with powdered sugar.

-Pink pralines: Almonds coated in caramelized sugar, often served with the famous and tasty praline brioche or tart.


The praline is used in all typical desserts of Lyon's regional food

The praline tart…how can you resist?

Source: https://www.cuisineactuelle.fr/recettes/tarte-aux-pralines-roses-facile-318441

In short, whoever you are:

-salty or sweet,

-adapted to a small traditional bouchon or a Michelin-starred restaurant,

-attended by a large table in a traditional bouchon or a romantic dinner at the Institut Paul Bocuse

-Côte du Rhône or rather Beaujolais

100% guaranteed pleasures, flavours and delights – for every taste in the world capital of gastronomy!

Come and visit Lyon to indulge in the pleasures of la gueule! And Vivre à la lyonnaise is well placed to accompany you!