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A Lyon, c'est l'mâchon - Munch on a traditional mâchon in Lyon!

Lyon's very own cuisine for early risers

Bons plans

Last updated date : 07/12/2023

A novel experience for those who tend to skip breakfast, and a firm favourite among gourmets, a mâchon is Lyon's equivalent to a good English breakfast, and very much part of life in Lyon – part of its gastronomic heritage in fact! Let us explain.

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What exactly is a mâchon?

In the early hours of the morning, and after a long night of intense labour, the Canuts, or silk workers who once lived and worked in the Croix-Rousse area in Lyon, gathered in bouchon restaurants around tables covered in check tablecloths to enjoy a hearty morning meal. The menu included Cervelle de Canut (fromage blanc seasoned with herbs and shallots), tablier de sapeur (breaded beef tripe), grattons (pork scratchings), andouillettes (sausages made of calf’s ruffle) washed down with wines produced in the Beaujolais and Mâcon areas. The ideal opportunity to enjoy a laugh with friends and colleagues

Lyon's famous writer Frédéric Dard had this to say about the experience: "homemade cuisine, fruity wines, and the sort of friendship that endures any amount of exhaustion (…) This is the time of day when the sun rises on the radiant faces of all enthusiastic mâchon munchers, and fills their hearts through their mouths."

A great tradition that's still very much alive, and which the Chamber of Commerce and Industry and ONLYLYON Tourism have decided to turn into an institution by organising frequent gatherings, the main topics of which are good food, great thirsts, business and various tomfooleries. Why not jump on the bandwagon.

Where enjoying this unusual experience?