Saturday, 1 December 2012

Horse Burger Boutique

Paris iPhone Photo Chronicles
~ Horse Burger Boutique ~

Horse Burger Boutique by Paris Set Me Free

BONUS: For Street Photography Fans!

Of all the old shop fronts preserved around the city, especially in the inner-lying districts, this has to be one of the most spectacular.

Whether they actually sold live horses, or just the meat, isn't clear from this spectacular mosaic, which would suggest the former. It would have been one of the many horsemeat sellers, though, not to be confused with the usual bouchers who sold standard old beef.

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The first and hopefully last time I ate horsemeat was a couple of weeks ago; it was overcooked and reheated and had the consistency of an old boot. Now the shop sells socks.

Right next door, bizarrely, hot dogs are on sale, confusingly promoted as poulet (chicken) flavoured. Goodness me, what a mixture. Will it be cat next? You don't see many of those in China Town around Place d'Italie, they say...

Well, the mosaic isn't as old as some of the ancient boucher and boulangerie shopfronts, only dating back to and intact since 1949.

It was in 1866 that the official authorisation to sell horsemeat was issued and by 1905 Paris had 311 of these specialist butchers and 200 market stalls. As they sold their wares at half the price of beef and vaunted its fortifying qualities it soon became extremely popular amongst the working classes.

The seige of Paris in 1870-1871 famously meant that Parisians had to get used to eating some extremely exotic fare, including certain of the zoological garden inmates, so they eventually came round to the idea of partaking of their usual means of transport. Crazy times in the wild wild west, indeed.

And why not...
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Sab Will / Paris Set Me Free - Contact me directly for photo tours, interviews, exhibitions, etc.

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