10 Rue du Grand Prieuré, 11th
Chefs Robert Compagnon and Jessica Yang are not afraid of a little culinary unorthodoxy, and unsurprisingly their thirty-seat Le Rigmarole is pretty indefinable.
114 Rue Amelot, 11th
Clown Bar’s exuberant interior dates back to the 1920s, and rather than looking old-fashioned and kitsch, the décor of bright yellow tiles and stained glass adorned with clowns and circus scenes is quirky and quite beautiful.
5 Rue St. Bernard, 11th
Nothing at Mokonuts is predictable, not even the cookies: Chocolate chips are traded for fennel, almond, and pickled lemon; coconut is paired with black pepper. Savory dishes are hyperseasonal, and the flavors are out of this world, with many of the spices and ingredients imported from Lebanon.
107 Blvd. Richard Lenoir, 11th
This is a true trattoria in the middle of Paris, with great platters of antipasti, thin-crust pizzas, and surprisingly big bowls of house-made pasta (definitely not the skimpy starter size—these are mains). The interior immediately suggests a good time with long electric-blue leather benches running the length of the walls, offset by yellow table mats on quintessentially Parisian round tables. Expect a tight squeeze: This place is perpetually packed with locals downing glasses of sparkling Lambrusco and rounding off with a few bites of the sublime tiramisu.
14 Rue Crespin du Gast, 11th
The young team behind this growing concept came up with the genius idea of opening bars in disused spaces all over Paris—on rooftops, at the old Pavillon at the Parc des Buttes Chaumont, and on a houseboat parked on the Seine. The newest locale, right on top of the Gare de l’Est might just be their greatest conquest to date: In addition to an incredible view and the trademark cocktails, you'll find snacks by souped-up kebab joint Grillé.
Hervé van der Straeten
11 Rue Ferdinand Duval, 11th
While you might have seen Hervé van der Straeten wide gold cuffs and triangulated necklaces on Net-a-Porter or in the cases at Neiman's, that range is just a tiny piece of this designer's empire. His furniture—which is all made in his workshop in Paris—is equally bold, and often more colorful. It's essentially like a more restrained spin on Memphis: It could have totally worked on the set of Ruthless People, but it doesn't look out of place in muted living rooms either.
1 Bis Passage St. Sébastien, 11th
This one-room wine bar requires a walk down a very long (and at night, scarily dark) passage, but the music, lively crowd, and simple but solid menu of French small plates justify the gauntlet. While Aux Deux Amis down the street may tempt with a similar wine bar concept, it gets way too packed: Au Passage, which also feels a bit more grown-up, easily wins out.
Septime La Cave
3 Rue Basfroi, 11th
While you can take your low-sulfite wine to go at this former shoe repair shop, you can also grab a seat at the bar and snack while you drink: Sardines, fois gras, and cheese all get the Septime treatment here.
Lilli Bulle (Closed)
3 Rue de la Forge Royale, 11th
Fittingly tiny, this packed-to-the-rafters shop is lined with kids clothing from up-and-coming European designers. Union Jack-emblazoned booties, tulle skirts flecked with sequins, and wee gingham shirts are as appealing to parents as they are to little ones
La Maison Dr. Hauschka
39 Rue de Charonne, 11th
This is one of those spots that doesn't feel like it could possibly be in a bustling city: Faced with a flowering courtyard, stone walls, and a glass ceiling, La Maison Dr. Hauschka is oh-so-quiet. Fitting really, because the facials and massages are relaxing enough to knock anyone out.
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