It is important, first, to know a bit about the history of passages in Paris. As we learned in our Paris by Site course, the passages were created beginning at the end of the 1700s and beginning of the 1800s and used to be the mansions of the aristocracy. For one reason or another, these mansions were turned into covered aracades connecting one road to another. Storefronts in theses passages were desirable because there were no taxes, and the covered passage allowed people to step out of the crowds and the dirtiness of the street and enjoy the new, leisurely activity of shopping for pleasure.
The first passage I wandered through was le Passage du Grand Cerf. It was only vaguely interesting, but I couldn't tell if shops were boarded up permanently or due to the case of the M. Perhaps it merits another visit on a busier day. Moving down Rue Tiquetonne, I came upon two fantastic epiceries. The first was called l'Epicerie de Bruno and was at 30 Rue Tiquetonne. It sold a fascinating variety of spices and teas, both of which made me nostalgic for the herb-filled mason jars at Lester House. Its a great place to go for cooking inspiration, or just for enjoying the delicate and exotic smells.