When you visit Paris it´s no surprise that the famous city is full of tourists. No wonder as the french capital has so many great restaurants, impressive buildings and an unique fashion culture to offer. But if you want a taste of the real parisian lifestyle you better avoid the typical touristic places.
So when you wanna feel as fancy as the Brigitte Bardot or Léa Seydoux I recommend you to go to one of the secret bars. Paris is full of hidden bars and as long you don´t know they exist, you would never find them. But no worries I´ll be your guide for your next cocktail hour in the beautiful french capital.
Most of the so called „speakeasy bars“ are an adaption of the prohibition american era. As every good secret they have hidden entrances.
The freezer room of a fancy restaurant..
or a washing mashine in a laundromat?
That´s just some of the places where you would never expect a bar to be, right?
Well not when it comes to Paris!
Let´s start with the lavomatic. Behind the washing mashine number 4 is a hidden entrance to the secret bar.
Where to find
30 Rue René Boulanger, 75010 – near metro station République
To get to the lavomatic you have to go to the washing mashine number 4 in the laundromat. You will find a hidden door behind it and can climb through the mashine.
When you walk up the stairs you feel like you just entered a private party. Comfortable benches, low tables and a dimmed light make you feel welcomed in a second. The staff is super friendly, young and it´s definitely a hip place to go.
The Basil Instinct is a fruity mixture of gin, lemon, elder-flower and some cucumber. It´s a refreshing summer cocktail and not too sweet. The bar also has lot´s of delicious little snacks to offer.
Little Red Door
The little red door is a great spot to go to before dinner. It´s a little bar with great cocktails, but as there are not so many seats I recommend you to go early before dinner. We went there at 6pm and got a seat right away.
Where to find
60 Rue Charlot , 75003 – near metro station République
The funny thing with this bar is, that the entrance actually isn´t behind the red door. So when some visitors try to open the iconic door they fail and walk away, because the secret entrance is the left wall right next to the door. So just lean on the wall an you will get to the bar – et voila!
The vibe of the red door bar is way more chick and elegant than the lavomatic. You get great music, nice seats and a creative menu. The only bad thing at this location is that you shouldn´t come too hungry, cause you won´t get a snack – not even some nuts.
The cocktail menu is short but creative prepared. It´s called the menu of universal values and every cocktail has an inspirational name like strength, self-direction or achievement. The menu looks like a kids book and on every page is a little red door you have to look behind to find the cocktail name. Hedonism is the choice to make in this bar. It´s a mixture of rye whisky, botanical red wine, apple, and green chili. To make it look even prettier it´s topped with some flowers.
Le Syndicat is by far the best bar in Paris – and one of the best rated bars of the world – but when you´re looking for a fancy spot, you´re totally wrong.
Where to find
51 Rue du Faubourg Saint-Denis, 75010 – near metro station Strasbourg – Saint-Denis
The place is surrounded by mostly trashy shops and looks closed from the outside. I recommend you to do a (online) reservation for this bar.
Le Syndicat is the opposite of modern or bright. It´s a dark but mysterious place to go and you won´t find a tourist here. The bar is a hommage à Paris and you will be surrounded by french artists and writers.
„Paris, city of lights and city of dreams,
a drink is more than what it seems,
we turned iconic monuments into drinks,
try them and do the links,
because Paris has still some secret things.
Le syndicat is our own little monument,
to french spirits and esprit de vivre.
We defend what is right and eternally french.
So enjoy where we´ve been our dear friends.
Thanks for being part of our dream.
Enjoy Paris in a drink! “
The cocktail menu couldn´t be more artsy and I´ve never seen a prettier one before. It starts with a little story and is beautiful designed. Every cocktail is named after an iconic monument like the Moulin Rouge and the best thing you get 100% french alcohol. There is a perfect cocktail for every taste, but my favorite one was the Moulin Rouge which you get served with some fancy feathers. But for real paris fans I recommend you to try the Eiffel tower cocktail, which comes in a glass that looks like a turned around eiffel tower itself.
When you go to the syndicat I highly recommend you to do a stop afterwards at the PNY (Paris New York). It´s just on the other side of the street and you will find the absolute best burger of the town. We were lucky and arrived right when it opened and just two (!) minutes later the hole restaurant was completely full. It´s a simple burger place with good quality and you can even get a big mac tribute burger, which was sooo delicious.
No Entry (and the pink mamma)
This time I have to start with a restaurant recommendation because if you go to this bar you shouldn´t miss out on the restaurant.
The pink mamma is my absolute favorite place to eat in Paris. It´s an italian restaurant with a romantic atmosphere, the nicest waitresses and the most delicious food. I loved every single second there and we celebrated our new years eve dinner at this restaurant.
Where to find
20 Rue de Douai, 75009 – near metro station Blanche
The No Entry is in the basement of the pink mamma restaurant and has one oft he coolest entrances. You need to walk through a freezer room, where you can see fresh meat hanging. You will get to a silver door which says „No Entry“ with a sign to stay outside, but if you open the metal door you will find the secret „No Entry“ bar. If you´re interested in a video of this entrance you can look it up on instagram under my France Highlights
It´s a cool place which looks a little bit like the labor of a crazy chemist. Even though the restaurant is fancy you will find mostly young guests in the bar. The atmosphere was great and there were some people dancing aswell.
As we´ve been at this bar on new years eve we only tried the special 80´s cocktail and I don´t know the normal cocktail menu. But from the 80´s special my favorite was the demon of the midnight drink which includes rum havana 3, citron vert, banana fraîche, coconut milk, sugar and bitter cacao. It was a delicious frozen daiquiri.
Last but not least comes the moonshiner bar, which is hidden in an italian restaurant.
Where to find
5 Rue Sedaine, 75011 – near metro station Bréguet-Sabin or metro Bastille
If you want to visit the Moonshiner you have to go to the pizzeria Da Vito and go straight through the walk-in fridge.
It´s a classic speakeasy bar with dimmed light, old couches and lots of little tables. The 1920s decor style suited the delicious drinks and their awesome presentations.
La Wanda is a mixture or Vodka Wyborowa with rosmarin, grapefruit juice, citron, bitter lavander and tonic.
Obviously the neapolitan style pizza is enormously good at Da Vito othervise it wouldn´t be completely full all the time.
Now you know how to find the five top secret bars in paris and I hope you enjoy exploring them by yourself. Please let me know if you´re intrested in more of these kind of food & drink recommendations.