By Amanda Little
The prohibition era sparked rebellion in many people and countries, and the idea of a quiet, secret place to make pleasant conversation among pleasant company remained an ideal that lasts to this day. As you wander through Paris, you might want to take a moment to find some of the most exotic and exclusive cocktail bars around, and you’ll need a password for a few. Enjoy a drink, if you can find it.
Experimental Cocktail Club
37 Rue Saint-Sauveur, 75002 Paris, 2nd Arrondissement
Pay careful attention to find this speakeasy. Venture down a side street off of the Rue Montorgeuil and pick out the barely marked door to gain entrance.
Called the ECC for short, this is the speakeasy that is considered the one that started the cocktail scene in Paris. The best way to drink here is to order the cocktail of the day, which are always inventive and affordable. Enjoy the social atmosphere with live DJs with its comfortable low lighting and bare-walls baroque style.
Le Ballroom du Beef Club
58 Rue Jean-Jacques Rousseau, 75001 Paris, 1st Arrondissement
Found in the basement of the butcher shop, The Beef Club, the Ballroom has a lowkey speakeasy vibe and a delectable array of unique cocktails, with no mojitos or cosmos in sight.
Finding the butcher shop is easy. If you venture to its left, you’ll find an unmarked black door that opens to a spiral staircase. Follow it to the Ballroom.
5 Rue Sedaine, 75011, Paris, 11th Arrondissement
Take a step into the jazzy Moonshiner that oozes 1920s class. Etched-glass wall sconces and gold wallpaper give this glittering bar a sultry atmosphere with a modern flair. Enjoy signature cocktails or a few classics and let the swing music move you.
If you want to find it, find Pizza Da Vito first, and walk straight to the kitchens. Find their walk-in freezer in the back and walk through that too, if you want to find your moonshine.
Le Très Particulier
Hôtel Particulier Montmartre, 23 Avenue Junot, 75018 Paris, 18th Arrondissement
If you’re looking for high-class cocktails you’ve come to the right place. Hosted by a hotel, this speakeasy is a little more well-known and refined. A scintillating combinations of a 1920s lounge and a green house, black and white tile floors extend under crimson couches and chairs. You can enjoy the plant life and glass walls as you sip your drinks.
You’ll have to pick out the Montmartre at the Hotel Particulier first, then walk down a private-access street, buzz on the intercom and say "prendre un verre", which translates to "have a drink".
30 Rue René Boulanger, 75010 Paris, 10th Arrondissement
A bright and cheery loft-like cocktail bar, come here to lift your spirits with some spirits. Hanging swings hover around tables, and an atmosphere of a secret hideaway permeates the bar.
To find the bar, enter the fully functioning laundromat on the ground floor, and pick out the washing machine that isn’t real. (hint: it’s in a back corner). Pull on the door as the whole wall swings open to reveal a dainty spiral staircase. Take it up to the third floor for your drinks!
52 Rue de Saintonge, 75003 Paris, 3rd Arrondissement
Dive into the cocktail lounge that may be small but is full of character. This Brooklyn-themed speakeasy is strewn with candles illuminating rough-hewn walls and has cushions lying about to use. The low-light and atmosphere create the perfect conditions for a unique date.
Enter the Mexican Taqueria, then go to the kitchens and enter the unmarked door next to the stove.
Little Red Door
60 Rue Charlot, 75003 Paris, 3rd Arrondissement
A spectacular if tiny mixology hot spot, the Little Red Door is reminiscent of an artist’s loft. Muted colors tie in with bright, blocky cushions on the chairs, and the back has low tables and a lounge-like setting. The bar is a little pricey, but the drinks are worth it. Make sure you show up early though, this tiny, hip space fills up quickly.
7 Rue Pierre-Fontaine, 75009 Paris, 9th Arrondissement
Ultra-chic, likely due to its location, the Orphee Prive offers up premium cocktails like the days of old with modern flair. It even has an open space and entire mirrored wall for a dancefloor.
Just down the hill from Moulin Rouge, the little door leading to Orphee Prive looks like a ground floor apartment. Don’t miss it!
11 Rue Jean Mermoz, 75008 Paris, 8th Arrondissement
In this beautiful blend of Victorian steampunk and masculine elegance, you can enjoy cigars, and classic drinks, like the sublte bitter Negroni, among gleaming brass and leather armchairs.
To find the Gentlemen 1919, enter through the back of the barbershop and enter the atmosphere of old-money and sophistication.
51 Rue du Faubourg Saint-Denis, 75010 Paris, 10th Arrondissement
This gaudy and sparkly bar offers a mysterious atmosphere with a combination of vintage speakeasy vibe and current popular drinks. With a mix of throwback drinks and music, this cozy spot holds up to the theme of its name. And don’t forget to get an alcoholic lollipop.
Find the door that’s hidden under nearly two inches of posters, guarded by a surly bouncer who looks like he might ask for a password. Don’t worry, he won’t, but getting into Le Syndicat will take a little courage.
Now that you have enjoyed the nectars of the gods, here are some hangover cures to enjoy!