If you want a taste of Gregory Marchand’s cooking without the challenge of scoring a reservation at Frenchie, this sister wine bar is a great option. However, there are caveats. A victim of its own popularity, Frenchie Bar à Vins is often chaotic, loud, and (for folks who don’t wish to perch on stools) a little uncomfortable. But chaos and noise, when combined with creative and delicious small plates, not to mention a fascinating wine list, can combine to make for some wonderfully memorable evenings. You shouldn’t go if you need to be seated and fed right away, or if you’re not willing to flag down a friendly server to beg for what you need. Go for rowdy fun, and by all means go early, like right when they open at 6:30pm. Either that, or after the major rush passes, after 10pm. Arrive during peak hours and you can expect to wait for a fairly long time out on the cobblestones.
Address: 6 rue du Nil, 75002
Hours: Open Tuesday to Saturday from 6:30-11pm
Telephone: +33 1 40 39 96 19
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Frenchie Bar à Vins in Photos
In Other Words
Have you been? Leave your own opinion about Frenchie Bar à Vins in the comments!
Le Fooding (2016) returns after naming this as their Best Wine Bar in 2012 and warns that “even if the food is almost too delicious, you’re supposed to be here to drink first and foremost! So there’s no point in getting upset if the dishes arrive out of order.”
TimeOut (2015) says “This is the sort of place where neighbours quickly become friends, and before long we were exchanging cards and even bites of food with the Japanese-French group on our left and the journalist from New York on our right. Divided into categories such as meat, fish and antipasti, with two or three small plates on offer for each, the menu encourages nibbling and sharing.” Rosa Jackson concludes that “Frenchie isn’t exactly cheap when you add it all up at the end, but it’s hard to think of a better spot for an impromptu meal with old and new friends.”
Ann Mah (2013) had a terrible experience. “It kills me to think that tourists come to Paris with high expectations, queue up at Frenchie wine bar, and spend a fair bit of money on pleasant but nondescript, sloppily served food. Perhaps it was just an off night. Other friends certainly love the place. But as we walked home, I saw evidence of Frenchie’s colonization of the rue du Nil — wine bar, restaurant, take away shop — and I began to suspect that Frenchie is a victim of its own success, expanding too quickly while neglecting the details. Unfortunately, the devil is in the details.”
Le Figaro (2012) François Simon reminds us that it’s not easy to get a stool at this popular wine bar, having tried on three separate occasions to arrive at opening time to find the place already full.
David Lebovitz (2011) says “the wine list is so compelling that the next morning when I woke up, I realized that the four of us had gone through four bottles of wine. I’m going to blame the fair prices and varied wines on the list, which made it hard to stop.” He concludes that “it was a fine evening of dining at a casual wine bar, which more and more, are becoming my favorite venues for dinner in Paris instead of restaurants, which require reservations and diners sticking to certain formalities, like eating in courses, rather than just ordering plates of salads, charcuterie, cheeses, and smoked fish. I like the informality of them and the younger staff are generally relaxed and friendly, and represent the best of the younger generation of French cooks and people who run restaurants.”
Not Drinking Poison in Paris (2011) jokes that “a wine industry friend and I amused ourselves by placing mock bets on how long it will be before the intended informal no-res bar becomes a small, slightly expensive restaurant with a difficult booking policy. (In other words, another Frenchie.)”
L’Express (2011) “Le générique des vins est oecuménique, déjouant le diktat du tout nature via le Nouveau Monde… tapas après tapas, on a retourné toute la carte… une burrata crémeuse dopée par une huile d’olive ardente et une concassée de petits pois frais à la menthe; un exceptionnel filet de truite fumée caressé par le velours d’une purée d’avocat et électrisé par une rafale de concombre vinaigré…”
Alexander Lobrano (2011) calls this “a terrific small-plates menu that comes from the kitchen across the street and offers delicious cameos of Marchand’s talent… I loved the wine list here, too… it not only suits Marchand’s cooking to a T but pushes out the walls a bit by including wines from other countries.”
One of our favorite memories from 2018 is our second visit to Frenchie Bar a Vin, this most recent stop in April. We arrived early and stopped in Frenchie To Go, where the staff was friendly and welcoming. I asked one of them if the chef from Omaha was still there and shortly after that he introduced us to the chef while the staff was scurrying to prepare for the opening. Chef Austin stopped by our table in the wine bar once or twice to ask if we were enjoying everything (best duck ever, by the way), and all of the dishes and all of the wine recommendations were outstanding.
The wine bar is a busy, bustling and crowded space, but the staff makes it warm and inviting. Chef Austin and the entire team have a special energy and team spirit, and the entire experience was memorable. Next time, we will try the restaurant in addition to the wine bar.
My wife and I’ ve been in Paris, and we tried some of the recommended restaurants by the parisbymouth.com. Yesterday we had Jea*** B. Last night we had the Juven***, they were very delicious. However, tonight is the last night in Paris, and we’ve agreed that we should have something memorable, so we decided to go to this Frenchie wine bar. All the food were amazingly good!! No restaurants could compare to this. We’ve been there at 6:45pm, and the queue was like 20 people before us, we still got the seats by the way. All the dishes are fu**ing delicious, and the wines are gooodddd. This frenchie wine bar serves small sharable dishes, and we ended up ordering 6 dishes and 2 bottles of wine for 2 people. All dishes are very very very delicious!! We’re definitely have to book the main Frenchie restaurant at our next visit to Paris!
Went to Frenchie Bar à Vins on a Friday in late August and despite the opening time of 7pm, friends of the staff were already trickling in before then, and by 7:00 I think the place was full (of non-friends too). The staff were very accommodating to the folks who unfortunately arrived at 7:05 and were waiting for tables.
There are about 20 seats, and I estimated the night I was there it was 70% Anglophones, perhaps because it was August. Note that all tables are shared by 4 or 6 people, so it’s not a great place for a romantic date — you WILL end up having a conversation with your tablemates for better or worse. It’s also quite loud and lively/crowded. I loved the food — we shared some charcuterie and a salad of burrata and peaches. Also, Like David Lebovitz, after we left we realized we’d drunk much more wine than we’d anticipated — so go ahead and order a bottle instead of drinking by the glass (especially since there is only one (good!) choice in each category by the glass). Final note: the tractor seats provide a nice rustic look, but they are not the most comfortable for guests of different sizes (tall or large men in particular).
It’s a good wine bar, i like the small plates menu and would definitely recommend them with a good Bourgogne rouge.
You can also try Le Porte-Pot, near the Sorbonne, a wine bar which proposes remarkable Corsica wines.
Editor’s note: the email address indicates that Vince works at Le Porte-Pot