Kristin Frederick, the American Who Changed How Paris Eats
- Californian & Parisian lady Chef
- Gourmet burgers in food trucks
- Seasonal fresh food @Green House
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It’s not that Paris had never seen a hamburger before 2011…
It’s not that Paris had never seen a hamburger before 2011, when the L.A. native Kristin Frederick launched central Paris’s first gourmet first food truck, Le Camion qui Fume
It’s just that burgers in the city then were found in small troughs of expat nostalgia, like Joe Allen, where Americans in Paris celebrate Presidential inaugurations every four years. Or Ferdi, which caters to an international fashion crowd. The big difference when Frederick, the former Apicius stagière, set up shop was that the locals got on board. And this has been the case with every American-style concept restaurant Frederick has opened since. Her obsession with authenticity appeals to a young, outward-looking crowd that had previously only fed on vicarious Instagram feeds. When she came along there was still a void in Paris of high-quality, cool convenience eating. Not anymore.
Unlike the big, sloppy restaurant burgers of yesteryear, Le Camion’s burger stand-style sandwiches—caramelized meat with just a hint of gristle for body, a grilled bun, iceberg lettuce, mayo and extra pickles—are edible in paper wrap. Hour-long lines formed immediately for something so portable but filling, so unlike the thin baguette sandwiches or sad pasta salads from Cojean that previously reigned supreme. Burger chains with similar values, like Blend and Big Fernand, swiftly opened and became phenomena. As did upscale trucks like Cantine California and Le Camion Gourmand. It’s funny that Frederick is not always given credit in ample media coverage for launching the movement that’s ensued. With double-meat-and-cheese-sized ambitions, our heroine did not stay put. This March, Frederick opened Green house, a new concept focusing on vegetables, not vegan though!