Imagine the scenario, you are visiting one of the most enchanting cities in the world and it has come to that part of the night when you want to finally have the perfect martini in one of the most exclusive cocktail bars around. It seems to be the perfect end to your fairytale trip but wait… wait a second! You’ve read how it isn’t that easy to just go and get in, what about the dress code policy, secret speakeasy code or any kind of random issue that could not assure your way in to the counter where you’ll finally hear the loving sound of ice crashing in a steel shaker to provide you that perfect balance and chillness of your favorite drink…..
Well here I am, providing my services as your private professional bartender who can tell you where to go and how to get in!
Paris will finally be yours.
Guide to the best cocktail bars in Paris – Le Marais area
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Welcome to the first part of my guide to the best cocktail bars in Paris! Yes, “first part” ‘cause I’ve got only one liver, and I don’t want to throw it away! Paris has so many great bars to go to, but remember the abuse of alcohol is dangerous so drink responsibly and enjoy your night out!
This guide is made to make you find the best cocktail bars, close to one another so you don’t need any transportation. Let’s begin from the 3rd arrondissement with Le Marais area.
Just one street from one another, you will be able to visit two out of the 50 Best bars in the world: Candelaria and Little Red Door.
Do you feel like eating tacos? Hey, aren’t we supposed to talk about booze?! Yes. But how about if I tell you that at rue Saintonge you will find this little taqueria that makes delicious tacos to prepare you for a long night out….
And what if this taqueria is hiding behind a white back door… a mezcal and tequila cocktail eden?
Welcome to Candelaria!
I have been to Candelaria several times since I moved to Paris in 2014 and I’ve never been disappointed. You can expect atmosphere, hospitality and drinks at their best!
The bartenders who work there know that they are part of a great team, and you can feel it. The smiling and happy faces will, as soon as you get in there, make you feel like part of the family.
As menus change quite often – due to seasonality mostly – I won’t tell you what drink to get.
When I went to take some pictures for this post, the cocktail I got was the Mal Bicho: a perfect balance between pisco, grapefruit maraschino and olive that completely changed the game.
Local’s tips: If you want to enjoy a drink and be able to relax, go at 6 pm. If you like to be part of a more party crowd and maybe socialize with cool strangers… well, as the night goes down the quality stays high and the vibes gets groovin’!
You’ve got to love Candelaria, the guys who run it have other awesome places around the city but we’ll talk about them in the next episode…… (and now Dr Dre’s song should start magically).
Little Red Door cocktail bar
Literally 2 minutes away by feet – according to google maps – in rue Charlot let’s get in the fantastic world behind the Little Red Door. This one is also on the 50 World best bars list of 2018 along with Candelaria.
The staff is very talented. They know exactly what they’re doing, they have a great knowledge of the spirits in order to be ready to serve you a perfect drink based on your tastes.
Of course their menu also changes regularly. This time I had the the chance to taste a drink called Stimulation, taken from a book. Yes, a book called Menu of universal values, and the drink featured mezcal chlorophyll and porcini mushrooms….. you understood correctly.
Porcini mushrooms. How could I not try it? My favorite kind of mushrooms in a cocktail recipe!
How was it? Good, which is why I decided to trust the bartender (hello, Scotland!) and go for a twist on the legendary martini cocktail.
This couldn’t make them more happier. Martinis are, for who works in this business, “the drink”. When I started this job, they always told me: “when someone orders a martini, the bartender puts on his best suit and tie to serve it!”
Cheers! It was magnificent, the grapefruit bitter and the Dolin vermouth engaged perfectly with the aromatic gin stirred on ice…..
Time to go, not before a shot of Fernet branca menta!!!!
Bisou. and its custom cocktails
As my night out in Paris was getting shorter and shorter, I had to skip a couple of bars in the same area that need to be visited, so here they are for you. (Actually I was just hungry and needed to eat so to be able to continue my night without falling down.)
The third bar is located 4 minutes from the Little Red Door, between rue du Temple and rue Charlot, and its called Bisou. (“kiss”). There is no menu, which means custom cocktails just made for you!
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Mary Celeste cocktail bar
The fourth one is 350 meters from the previous one, and is called le Mary Celeste, from the same owners of Candelaria. If you like oysters and seafood as part of a food pairing experience, this is the place to go.
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Useful tips on Le Maris area
Closest métro stations
• Candelaria: Filles du Calvaire (line 8) or Saint-Sébastien-Froissart (line 8)
• Little Red Door: Filles du Calvaire (line 8)
• Bisou.: Filles du Calvaire (line 8) or Oberkampf (lines 5 and 9)
• Le Mary Celeste: Filles du Calvaire (line 8) or Saint-Sébastien-Froissart (line 8)
Where to stay in Le Marais
These are some of the best cocktail bars to go check out in Paris, and what best than also staying in Le Marais area to really enjoy your nights out to their full extent?! So book a room in the area and all you’ll need will be your feet and and lots of water between these delicious drinks!
What to wear at a cocktail bar in Paris
If you’re not sure and don’t want to make a fashion faux-pas and ensure you’re entry in these cocktail bars and speakeasy, I’ll advise you to stick to black!