Les Halles (de Lyon) is a high-end covered market in Lyon’s 3rd arrondissement, specializing in local and fine foods and ingredients. Wandering around the space is like being in an art gallery for food. Here, baskets heaped with oysters, and massive scallops sitting prettily on ice next to gleaming silver mackerel and flounder more reminiscent of muddy doormats. There, macarons painted with flecks of glitter and arranged like edible jewelry in tidy boxes. Piles of escargot. Cases of regional cheeses the color of grass, ivory, and soot, ranging in size from thimble to hubcap. Cakes, chocolates, wine, and every cut of meat you can imagine, including whole-chicken-complete-with-head.
Les Halles is worth a trip, even if you just feast your eyes. If you plan to appease your rumbling stomach, however, be prepared to pay for it.
On my last visit, I splurged on some overpriced but delicious quenelles, a sort of dumpling Lyon is known for. Usually, quenelles contain meat (for example pike, chicken, or crayfish), but I opted for these mini plain ones (quenelles natures) in tomato sauce: