Wednesday, November 17, 2010

Paris- Rue des Rosiers

Rue des Rosiers is the main thoroughfare of the Marais' historic Jewish quarter. Walking down this street and seeing the facades scrawled in Hebrew and French, many of them dating to the early 20th century, you can sense the rich history here. The area is also known as the Pletzl, which means square in Yiddish.

Large Jewish communities have lived here on and off for centuries, starting in the 13th century, when the area was known as "The Old Jewry." At the constant mercy of kings who periodically expelled them from France, Jews only acquired a measure of stability in the early 19th century, under Napoléon I. 

During WWII, the neighborhood was especially targeted by the Nazi occupation and the collaborationist French police. Many schools in the area attest to that, including one that can be found off of Rue des Rosiers, at 6, Rue des Hospitalières-St.-Gervais. A commemorative plaque stands at the boy's school here. 165 students from this school were deported to concentration camps.

Today, the street and surrounding neighborhood is well-known for its delicious Middle Eastern and Yiddish/Eastern European specialties. I googled over 133 kosher restaurants in Paris. About 35 of them were around Rue des Rosiers. some of my favorites were Mivami for felafel and Israeli treats, Micky's Deli for fresh deli meat, and Korcarz for delicious dairy dishes. I also loved the authentic French food at O'you which was a taxi ride away.

Photographs above show stores in area. From top: Love Paris, Kosher Shop and Waiting for Felafel.


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