Something’s brewing in Paris lately, and it’s raising a frothy following in eateries and bars all over town. Wine might be king in the realm of French beverage-dom, but its heftier cousin made from grains instead of grapes is quickly climbing the ranks with craft beer bars, shops and microbreweries creating a beerocracy of their own.
Here’s a list of our top five places to sip on or pick up some cold, foamy refreshments just in time for your summer soif :
La Fine Mousse
Located in the lively Oberkampf neighborhood, this specialty beer bar boasts an equally lively atmosphere in addition to a vast selection of 20 artisanal drafts and more than 150 bottled brews from France, Belgium and elsewhere. With knowledgeable pourers manning the bar and a menu detailing each beer’s ingredients and alcohol content, you can become a beer maestro in just one evening and will still have more than a hundred reasons to come back and learn more. Order your drinks with a plate of duck rillettes, terrine and French salami or some aged Comté, swiss and goat cheese slices, and you’ll know longer be pining for wine bars when you’re done.
6 Avenue Jean Aicard 75011 Paris
Website : http://www.lafinemousse.fr/
Brasserie de la Goutte d’Or
This relative newcomer bottles up spicy, potent and bitter brews with an ethnic twist. The team uses unconventional and exotic ingredients, including African rooibos and cola nuts for its “Ernestine,” an India Pale Ale that pays homage to Paris’s diverse 18th arrondissement. The remaining three signature recipes are a matter of preference. Try the “Château Rouge,” a spicy red beer with caramel malts. Or if you prefer blonds, go for the “Myrha,” a light, fruity beer infused with a hint of dates. If that sounds too flighty for you, sip on the “Charbonnière,” an amber beer made with smoked malts. The best part is you can go and taste them all for free and take a pack of your favorite brew to go.
28 rue de la Goutte d’Or 75018 Paris
Facebook : https://www.facebook.com/brasserielagouttedor
Don’t let the name deter you. You might be in Pigalle, but you won’t need to get tested after visiting this refreshingly original tiki-style lounge bar with a smorgasbord of beverages to please all tastes. Boozehounds can get giggly-tipsy off tropical cocktails or entertain dangerously high BAC levels over shared flaming scorpion bowls. Liquor aside, it’s the small but select beer stock that should not be overlooked, especially when pints start at 5 euros a pop — a rare find outside of Parisian happy hours. Here you can get Newcastle on tap, in addition to a few other uncommon craft beers and imported bottles for those who are tired of getting buzzed off Leffe and Heineken.
Say hello to your next, Parisian dive with food, booze and unpretentious babes, indie rock music and no frills to be found. The huge selection of independently brewed all-French beers, includes three drafts that change frequently and a seriously thorough bottle collection (five pages long to be exact) in all its grainy glory. Far from the nondescript wine menu, where choosing is like playing the booze lottery in hopes of pulling the winning bottle, the in-depth menu tells you everything you need to know about ingredients, origin, body, color and type. Try the Fièvre de cacao from Brasserie Thiriez in the Nord-Pas-de-Calais region; it’s a chocolate-prune color (whatever that means…) with both bitter and mild flavors tinged with the sweetness of roasted cocoa. Prices are so reasonable (starting at 3,50 for a demi and 7 for a full), you’ll never order a 10-euro pint of Stella in a listless café again.
3 rue Baudelique 75018 Paris
Website : http://supercoin.net/
La Moustache Blanche
Skip your usual Monoprix beer run, and head to this vintage-style craft beer shop that’s home to an impressive 500 international bottled brews. A fake English phone booth displays UK imports, and the remaining stock from North America, Belgium, the Netherlands, Germany, and France, among others, is lined up on shelves and tables wherever there’s free space. Never drank Cornish ale, Honey porter, Dirtoir Black Lager, Chocolate Stout, American IPAs or other blends with names you can’t pronounce? Start prepping your liver now, and learn to drink your carbs because you’ve got enough choice to live off beer for the rest of your life.
16 rue des Tournelles 75004 Paris
article: Stéphanie Holmes