Whoever said you can’t buy happiness obviously never visited Marie Eiffel Market on Shelter Island. Right alongside the harbor on North Ferry Road, the market sells everything from handmade pastries to pizzas, specialty grocery items to artisanal French and Italian cheeses. All things that sing strongly of joie de vivre.
Enter the market on any given day—it’s open 12 hours a day, seven days a week—and your nose will swear you’ve somehow been teleported to a Parisian pâtisserie. There are worse delusions. Especially since the pastries at Marie Eiffel are all baked on-site by a real Parisian pâtissier.
This is not a happy accident. It’s the design of the market’s owner, Marie Eiffel, a French ex-patriot who’s called Shelter Island home for more than 10 years.
“I’ve always been in the food business,” says Eiffel. “I worked for very high-end people in Paris and New York. So, for me, opening the market was a normal next step.”
It’s also been a highly successful one. In the three years the market’s been open, it’s amassed a loyal—and ever-growing—collection of fans.
“People really love our food,” says Eiffel. “It’s very funny. People come in and they buy everything. Literally everything. Of course, we have very good pastries. We have a great amount of cheese from Italy and France. Even our salads are very popular. It’s difficult to say what’s most popular though, because people just love our food. They have the salad and it’s delicious. They have the pizza and it’s delicious. They have our cheese and it’s delicious. It is such a compliment to us.”
A compliment, too, is the number of catering requests the Marie Eiffel Market receives. In the past few months, Eiffel estimates she’s catered at least one event per day, with the events ranging in scale from enormous (think weddings and political fundraisers) to intimate (take-away dinners for couples to enjoy on the beach).
“We do a lot of special orders and we have a lot of special items,” says Eiffel. “And we do everything from scratch. The old fashioned way. Which is, of course, the right way. But everybody knows that.”