The historic “Rue des Rosiers” –
The « Rue des Rosiers » is the most well-known and centrally located street of the Jewish neighborhood (known as Pletzl or little place) in Paris located in the Marais District (4ème arr). In the centuries past, the street used to be bordered by ramparts built between 1190 to 1215 by Philippe Auguste. Philippe II, the then King of France had a lengthy reign of 42 years from 1180 to 1223 and is well known for his military victories. According to historical records, the street received its name around the year 1230 at which time roses could be found growing along its fortified wall. You can still seeing remnants of the ramparts in the nearby “Jardin des Rosiers” park.
Jews have been populating this area from early in the thirteenth century to this day. You can still spot families in traditional dress navigating the streets to the local deli or the synagogue. Many tragic events have occurred to the Jews in this neighborhood. From the banishment of the Jews and confiscation of their property at the end of the thirteenth by King Philippe II (Philippe Auguste) century all the way through the French revolution, to the deportations of WWII, to the antisemitism bombing that occurred in 1982 and left several victims.
Today, you will find a unique blend of Jewish commerce alongside trendy fashion boutiques. …and best of all, the VERY best Falafel in all of Paris can be found right here !!!
Falafel – The only fast food Parisians won’t snub you for eating while walking down the street
I recommend stopping at the red deli “mi-va-mi”on the corner of Rue des Rosiers and Rue des Ecouffes and ordering the vegetarian falafel (6€) from the street window. Then walk down the street to the quiet garden park “Jardin des Rosiers” to devour your delicious but messy lunch (bring extra napkins). Don’t be in a rush, there is often a long line (your guarantee to an enjoyable culinary experience). An alternative also with a great reputation is “L’As du Falafel” located just across the street. However, if you prefer a sit down more restaurant setting, try Chez Marianne. I REALLY wanted to try ALL of these options, hélas I just couldn’t eat another bite… I’ll be dreaming of falafel until my next visit.
To visit the neighborhood, hope on the Metro 9 to Saint-Paul (the same stop as for the “Place des Vosges”). Exit the station and cross the street into the Marais district and travel just a few blocks further to the Rue des Rosiers.
-Girl Gone Gallic