Somewhere on Boulevard Arago, between Rue des Tanneries and Les Gobelins, stood the greatest monument of the early twenty-first century: the YaToo Partoo (YTP). The YTP was the love child of a vending machine, a cantina truck, and a bodega. Spanning the length of an entire storefront, the YTP offered the twenty-four hour convenience of purchasing various sundries such as toilet paper, milk, and prophylactics. If anyone in the neighborhood wanted to have a tall, chilly glass of milk after a safe roll-in-the-hay, they were all set. No humans or grumpy salespeople involved whatsoever. Feed the YTP a couple euros, allow the mechanics to do the heavy lifting, and you are all set. Easy. Since this oasis stood just around the corner from my old apartment, my friends and I frequently utilized the YTP for its wide array of snacks. Nutella. Waffles. Kinder. St. Michel. Haribo. You name the treat, the YTP offered it. This was exceptionally useful since actual Parisian grocery stores have limited hours compared to the United States. If my friends and I required a midnight snack, or a Sunday treat, we’d hop on a bike, head to the YTP, and fill our basket with goodies to enjoy until we could get to the market.
Snacks from the YTP were shared over heartfelt 2AM confessions and intimate conversations amongst friends. Laughter fits were exchanged over a plate of smiling BN Biscuits. I still have nothing but fondness for French snacks. To this day, they bring me happiness. However in the United States, these sweets are naturally a rarity. Unless you make a pilgrimage to a specialty store and pay an obscene price, you’re out of luck.
Much to my surprised delight, a wonderful friend recently gifted me with a magical and generous three-month subscription to MiamMiam Box, a monthly “subscription-based service that delivers the most premium French snacks and candies to your door”. As a refresher, miam and miammiam, are the French equivalents to yum and yummy. Highly relevant and appropriate naming. The company offers a range of affordable, flexible plans, or you can actually go to the website and shop for snacks à la carte. Whatever you decide, a festive box is effortlessly delivered to your doorstep, and fun treats await you. While a couple snacks were repeated in my three-month cycle, the boxes are generally different month-to-month. The bonus? Every month contains different literature about French recipes and traditions. If you are a Francophile, or a foodie (or both), then the MiamMiam Box will be the happiest piece of mail you receive. It’s much better than getting bills in the mail. Trust me.
Because I aim to be completely honest in this space, I must say that the December box didn’t last long in my household. A day, or two, at best. The second I saw the Pepito package smiling at me, it was scene deleted. I came to consciousness among a scattering of crumbs piled on my baby bump and chocolate smudged smears decorating every extremity. Those jubilant, little cookies never stood a chance. Being five or six months pregnant at the time, any fun food that comes into the house is not long for the world- nonetheless snacks that connect me to such delightful Parisian memories. When I realized that À La Prochaine followers absolutely need to know about MiamMiam Box, most of the treats from that installment were gone. Luckily, I was intuitive enough to save most of the food packaging, to give you all a… eh hem… simulated experience. Rest assured, I was much more disciplined for January and February’s boxes.
Could I decide a favorite treat? Impossible. The BN Biscuits, Pim’s, Pépitos, Petits Coeurs, and Haribo Miami Piks all equally took my tastebuds for a flavorful tango. If you have a sweet tooth, the MiamMiam Box is a great present to yourself, and it also makes an even better, more unique, gift to someone else. The snacks are all perfect for goûter– that designated afternoon snack time practiced by the French.
Even though the YaToo Partoo no longer exists in its old spot on Boulevard Arago, which was a devastating discovery during my last trip to Paris, the MiamMiam Box fills that void, transporting me back to some of my happiest, simplest moments as a student in Paris.
Now if you’ll excuse me, my Pim’s await.
À la prochaine.
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**I have not been paid or compensated in any way for this post. I genuinely enjoy the product.**