The other thing that struck me were the mushrooms or champignon. A standard white mushroom just as in the US but they had a nice, long stem with clean white roots attached.
 
  Now this was a respectable mushroom. Not the standard US MegaCulture veggies that have no taste, no smell, but look perfect.

  This was a mushroom that screamed " I am a mushroom, from the Earth and I'm very glad that you're here to take me home and make a sublime sauce ".
 
  Which is the other thing you'll notice. The food simply tastes much fresher than anything you'll find in the US. A piece of fruit might have a spot or two on it, but it'll taste as though it came from the tree behind your Grandma's house.
  To find that kind of produce all over town was a real joy.
   
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