Bars I have managed in Paris
Here you will find some more text, pictures and my personal ranking of some of the bars.
The first bar is visited was MABEL.If you go straight through the Grilled Cheese Sandwich Shop you will enter a room with 6 bar stools at the bar counter and some cosy chairs and sofas to relax and sit together. The style is classical with industrial charme, a bit speak easy atmosphere. The warm and friendly welcome of the bar team matched perfect with the lovely atmosphere. It was quite early and so I took my preferred seat at the bar. I felt very comfortable and home. The bar stool was also comfy and had the right height to take some notes in my “drinking diary”. The spirits catch the eye and are lined up on a bottle stair. The focus is obviously on rum and you will find some nice treasures if you take a closer look. The music is present but not dominating the ambience. I peeked through the room at the bad weather outside, happy to sit in such a nice bar. I looked at the menu which is well structured and kategorised. The „Routes des Rhums“ section I liked very much. However, I sticked with the cocktails and opted for a „Makh Tihinez“ a tiki version of a Martinez. This drink was very tasteful and a good starter. All the drinks on the menu are promising and not an easy decision. I asked „Rum Runner“ Joseph for a recommendation and which drink I shouldn’t miss. „Nutty by Nature“ is a kind of Milk Punch with clarified nut milk, refreshing coconut water, banana, spices and of course rum. The drink comes very clever pre-bottled with a tumbler, ice cubes and nice decoration. Joseph explained everything in detail and his recommendation was complex and delicious. He is a very calm and balanced host, every step fits, it was a great pleasure to be there. The alcohol started to affect me a bit and this is where the Grilled Cheese Sandwich Shop stepped in, providing some salvation. These sumptuous sandwichs will be served in the bar too.
These sumptuous and greasy sandwichs form a perfect contrast to the fine and delicate cocktails. Great idea!
The sandwich was yummy and I was well prepared for the next concoctions. A Greenpoint is one of my favourites and so I went with the „Sombre Detune“. Dry and smoky with well-chosen products. Firstly with a Santa Teresa Rum 1796 and secondly with a Whisky Compass Box Blend that I haven’t seen in many bars before.
There is a Japanese legend which promises that anyone who folds one thousand origami cranes will be granted a wish. The drink „Bamboo Crane“ comes with a self-made crane and was a successful choice for my last drink at this bar. The drink was served pre-bottled with a chilled tumbler and ice. It had the power of Nikka and the sweetness of the PX. A great drink and exactly what I love. I forgot to mention that a water service is right there when you find your seat in every bar.
This bar really impressed me with their balanced drinks made with love for detail and their outstanding hospitality.
I had a great evening, nice neighbours at the bar, learned that Greg Boehm has the largest collection of historical cocktail books, found the business card of Berlins bar Lost in Grub Street and also found some cocktail recipes on the back ob Mabels business card. Well done.
Le Syndicat #2
Next bar was Le Syndicat Organisation de Défense des Spiritueux Français how this institution is named correctly. The bar is plastered with music posters and has no name plate outside. Trashy, bare walls covered with golden curtains, some coins between the bricks of the ceiling and a perfect bar counter, that was my first impression. A warm and professional welcome by the barmaid followed. Unfortunately all seats at the bar counter were occupied but after a few sips of my cocktail the barmaid found a place for me. Some guys of the Bar Hommage in Stockholm had their guestshift and the drinks looked nice, but after my second drink I was full. I had the „Getting Tziky with Nut“ which is not a typical drink for the barstalker and almost dinner.
But how did that happen? As I enjoyed my first drink “Saix en Provence” at the bar, the bartender came up to me and spoke to me in Greek. He had seen me talking to Gin Joint and Clumsies at the fair and assumed that I am a Greek colleague. And as I checked my mobile, Alexander wrote me to give Aris and Sullivan a big hug. Now, it is pretty clear why it came to the Tzatziki drink. Unexpectedly I met Greece hospitality in France and felt quite home. Not to forget about, the bar is focussed on french spirits.
The most important thing in a bar is the hospitality and to feel welcome and valued. Bravo 🙂
Little Red Door #3
I was happy to meet Remy Savage again in his own bar. He was wearing the same beautiful apron like in Athens and his whole team by the way as well. As I already knew the menu and some of the drinks, I opted for one I didn’t have. The idea and the realisation of the new menu ist fantastic but the concoction didn’t reach me after all the previous drinks. I already had my taste experiences at Mabel. So, maybe it would had been a better idea to go with a classic drink, they are amazing. Due to my alcohol level I decided for a refreshing Gin & Tonic, I think it was a No.3 Gin. Unfortunately the night came to an end. The bar was cleaned, the aprons taken off and it was time to say goodbye. The only quick thing I had to do was to test if the bar stools are that comfortable as they look like, and they were. At the Bastille I jumped out of the cab and went towards my hotel.
Remy belongs to the best-dressed bartenders, by the way.
After my opening of the bar adventures at Mabel I continued my trip to the brand new opened bar DANICO by Nico de Soto. This time you have to walk straight through an italian restaurant where you find the bar at the end. First thing I noticed was the incredibly high ceiling, many mirrors and many stripes. The outfit of the bartenders spontanously reminded me of the gondoliers in Venice. They were inspired by Gaultier, ups. The bar itself is tiny but has a second level, everything is very fancy and chic. The cool elegance looks a bit impersonal. Anyway everthing will be outshined by the super hot Nico de Soto. He is a eye candy and I had to concentrate on the menu. At my first visit the bar was so packed and I was so distracted by all the bar luminaries around, that I postponed the drinks for a second visit.
Bar shows are not a good opportunity to get to know a bar. It is better to go on another, calmer day to get a proper impression.
So, I have to return because I don’t want to write something unfair. I tried two very different drinks. First „Sayonara, Motherfucker“ and then „Controlelamousse“ with a clarified tomato juice ice block. Both were interesting.