Au Passage

Another wine bar/restaurant has opened in Paris and already has received rave reviews; Au Passage focuses on natural wine and small plates which are easy on the wallet and a great place to sit back with friends for a fun evening.

I got lost 3 times trying to find the restaurant in the narrow street but it’s worth your while. Since it opened a couple of months ago, it has become a local favorite as it gives more room to customers than other notable wine bars such as L’Avant Comptoir, Le Dauphin and Frenchie’s wine bar. As in the others’ styles, the decor is minimal with the room being adorned with a zinc bar and tiles. But who care when you are uncorking exquisite wines and feasting on delicious small plates.

The wine list is short and sweet: 5 bottles per region – also available by the glass, and magnum. We opted for one white and one red from Burgundy. Light, fruity and delicious – great for an early autumn evening.

Who’s in charge of the food? A talented small team of chefs, two (one chef and one sommeliere) formerly from the notable Spring and Le Verre Volé. Alongside a delightful staff, the restaurant serves a short menu with great products.

The portions here are small (5-9 euros each); similar to tapas. Whatever they want to call it, tapas or small plates; it is inexpensive and good. Flavor pairings were unexpected and, for the most part, successful. I loved the anchovy bass line in a dish of “courgette, ricotta” and the coriander flower in an escabèche with clams and chinchard (reminiscent of mackerel).

The fatty comforts that never fail…

Creamy Burrata, Yellow Zucchini and mint

House smoked saucisson

Carpaccio de Mulet Noir (Carpaccio of Mulet wit pickled onion rings – so fresh!)

Heirloom tomatoes with tangy fresh goat cheese and first pressed olive oil

Hand cut steak tartare raw egg

Mussel salad with potatoes andc oriander flowers (with a creamy curry/mustard sauce)

Squid (and its black ink)

Duck heart and liver (smokey and sweet; perfectly cooked)

Borata tuna and smoked aubergine

There’s still dessert! 

Blue cheese with Saint-Marcellin

Chocolate ganache and caramel salted-butter

Figs and Ricotta cheese

…and a free sample from the chef, James Henry (formerly of Spring) peach in red wine and dried prune.

Here blooms a wine bar in the 11th making an early mark as a local favori among other wine bars in town.

Hint: Open until 2am – start uncorking those wines!

Au Passage

Address: 1 bis passage Saint Sébastien, 75011

Metro:  Sébastien-Froissart (Ligne 8 )

Telephone: 01 43 55 07 52

Closed:  Sunday


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