The term wine bar can be a little confusing in Paris. All wine bars feature wine, of course, but the bar part is a little more flexible. Some have a counter and tables, and you can show up anytime for a glass of wine and a snack. Others are more like restaurants than bars. At many, reserving in advance is a must. Some are also cavistes, or retail wine shops, which makes them a good stop if you need to pick up a bottle. What’s clear is that these bars à vin are among the most fun places to eat and drink in Paris. Here are some of our top picks.
L’Avant Comptoir 9, Carrefour de l’Odéon, in the 6th Arrondissement. 01 46 33 16 24.
It’s standing room only at this popular tapas and wine bar, and reservations aren’t accepted, so show up early or during off-hours to avoid the crowds. L’Avant Comptoir is fun, inexpensive and vegetarian friendly, and open daily, all day.
Le Baratin 3, rue Jouye Rouve, in the 20th. 01 43 49 39 70.
Owned by Philippe Pinoteau, Le Baratin has long been an advocate of vins naturels. It’s an off-the-beaten-path spot in Belleville, but it’s lively and cozy, popular with a mixed crowd drawn by the modern bistro cooking of Raquel Carena, Pinoteau’s wife. Reservations are a must.
Le Baron Rouge 1, rue Théophile Roussel, in the 12th.
Neighborhood locals gather here on after some shopping at the Marché d’Aligre, but don’t let the regulars intimidate you. Order your glass or carafe, then take it out to the sidewalk and socialize. Try the oysters in winter, or any of the excellent small-plate options, like cheese and charcuterie. No reservations are accepted.
Le Chapeau Melon 92, rue Rébeval, in the 19th. 01 42 02 68 60.
Located in Belleville and run by Olivier Camus, Le Chapeau Melon is a caviste during the day and a table d’hôte in the evening. It’s reasonably priced and funky, with a small kitchen that serves a unique prix fixe menu. The food is flavorful, refined and inspired by a blend culinary influences.
Coinstot Vino 26 bis, passage des Panoramas, in the 2nd. 01 44 82 08 54.
Situated in the passage des Panoramas, Coinstot Vino offers vins naturels by the glass and bottle. Food includes small plates (cheese, charcuterie, oysters) as well as full meals. You can reserve a table in the dining room or on the terrace, but you can also have a glass at one of the few spots at the counter.
Legrand Filles et Fils 1, rue de la Banque, in the 2nd. 01 42 60 07 12.
A wineshop and épicerie in the galerie Vivienne, Legrand is a great stop if you’re looking for a break from shopping. It has a bar with a few tables, and there are excellent snacks and wines not often poured by the glass.
Les Papilles 30, rue Gay Lussac, in the 5th. 01 43 25 20 79.
Les Papilles is a caviste and bistro with a beautiful bar for casual sipping. Located near the Jardin du Luxembourg and owned by the friendly Bertrand Bluy, it serves market-inspired food, with charcuterie and salads for lunch. Be sure to reserve if you want to enjoy the prix fixe dinner. 호빠
Le Verre Volé 67, rue de Lancry, in the 10th. 01 48 03 17 34.
Open daily, Le Verre Volé is a popular caviste of natural wines, serving snacks and more filling mains in a casual, friendly atmosphere. Reserve ahead if you want a table, or just pick up a bottle and head to the canal St.-Martin with a group of friends.
Willi’s Wine Bar 13, rue des Petits Champs, in the 1st. 01 42 62 05 09.
Owned by Englishman Mark Williamson, this Paris classic has been around for more than 30 years and draws plenty of Anglophones as well as locals. Located near the Palais Royal, Willi’s actually has bar seating, making it a great stop for a few glasses or a casual meal.
Doni Belau is the owner and editor of the Girls’ Guide to Paris a travel website and blog written by Parisian residents and insiders covering everything from fashion to culture to foodie faves in the city of light.