9 artisanal food items to purchase from Merci Marcel to live like a French in Singapore
You’ve probably come across Merci Marcel – whether while exploring Singapore hipster enclave Tiong Bahru or scrolling through Instagram. Or perhaps you read about it here. It’s that chic bistro next to Tiong Bahru Bakery with the Balinese-meets-French Riviera aesthetic. Since opening doors last November, couple co-founders Marie Charlotte Ley and Antoine Rouland (of O Batignolles and O Comptoir) have established the place as more than a dine-in destination. Check out the gourmet corners, which stock jams, cheese, wine, as well as lifestyle offerings for you to buy and bring home. It’s really a multi-concept lifestyle store.
Perfect with pastries and scrumptious when paired with cheese are La Cour d’Orgères spreads. Merci Marcel’s the exclusive distributor in Singapore for these gourmet artisanal jams from France. The family business has been around for 40 years and recipes have been passed down from father to daughters, although now they too are putting their own spin to create unusual flavours.
100 per cent organic natural iced teas infused in France, beverage brand UMA uses real tea leaves from fair-trade farm cooperatives in Sri Lanka, South Africa and Vietnam just to name a few. A young startup, it’s among the small batch producers that Marie and Antoine chose to work with. The Merci Marcel founders might’ve been in Singapore for 9 years but they travel twice a year to attend and explore F&B exhibitions in Paris, which is one of the ways that they’ve met vendors in person and familiarized themselves with the boutique products.
Pure cocoa chocolate tablets by Le chocolat des Français is literally made in France. Wrapped in playful and quirky packaging, the designs are by French illustrators such as Laura Junger and Josh Cochran. Flavours range from dark chocolate to salty caramel, but keep your peepers peeled for seasonal goodies.
An old brewery in the 14th Parisian district (that’s on the left bank of the River Siene) from 1890 to 1969, Gallia Beer was recently revived about a decade ago by two university friends passionate about craft beer. Staying true to Gallia’s original for of pilsner-style beer, the duo have also been exploring modern techniques, playing with taste of hops and malts.
The Fruit nectars are made from a rigorous selection of fruits grown in a family farm in the countryside near Lyon. The fruits are processed at the peak of their maturity. Stock your kitchen cupboard with bottles of strawberry, apple, and peach for stay-at-home weekends when you just want to dig into crepes in bed.
What’s your flavour? Merci Marcel offers a selection from French tea house Kusmi Tea Paris. Cosy up with a book that you’ve been meaning to read, burrito wrap yourself up in a blanket, et voila! The making of quality “me time”.
The allure to dressing like a Parisian lies in the simplicity. Likewise, Cluse watches are minimalistic, elegant and versatile. Named after a commune in France, nestled at the foot of forests in the Northern Alps, the timepieces are an amalgamation of quality and style.
Merci Marcel was conceptualised to focus on championing independent gourmet and lifestyle brands, art and culture. And what better way to champion the indie scene and innovation than by creating an epynomous capsule collection. This includes a cotton Tote bag, traditional Singapore enamel mug, traditional French Breton bowl with handcrafted personalisation, and t-shirt with the words “La Vie En Marcel”.
Beginning in April, Merci Marcel plans to hold art exhibitions to showcase the work of local artists each month. Antoine explains how they recognise that there’s a lot of creativity in the neighbourhood and aspires to carry forward this artistic vibe. Down the line, perhaps Merci Marcel will open another branch in Singapore or expand overseas.