Alcohol farm

Drink without alcohol in Paris? It’s a thing. Here is your guide

Martha Wright has spent six of the last twelve months in Paris, where she has explored the city through the lens of both a wine professional and a sobriety coach. This means focusing on the best options for low-alcohol and non-alcoholic venues and drink options.

Seeking NA beverages around the world has been a colorful mission for Wright, connecting her with passionate young entrepreneurs. “It pulls me out of my rut and across town to investigate a tip on a zero-proof thoughtful drink,” she says, like the “creepy and sexy basement bar themed around the opium” where she drank a spectacularly presented NA cocktail with CBD.

“I had good discussions with young shopkeepers in Paris interested in these new NA spirits, but I was also mocked and disguised by the owner of a traditional wine shop when I inquired about NA wine!”

To complement our companion piece on Wright’s take on why alcohol-free [AF] trend has taken hold in Paris, I asked him for his best recommendations of places to go and drinks to try. Here are his suggestions.

The Drinking Peacock

Wright leads the list with The Drinking Peacock, which she says is the first dedicated AF bottle store in France. It opened this spring, and she’s so excited about it that she might fly there straight from the airport when she arrives in Paris next month.

Contact details: 61, rue de Meaux, 75019 Paris

Beverages & Co

Beverages & Co is a bottle/cafe/bar store that offers mostly alcoholic options, but with a nice selection of about three dozen non-alcoholic bottlings, says Wright. “They’ve done something unique on their bar menu by committing to creating a true NA equivalent for each of their six signature cocktails.” Sitting at the bar and chatting with the knowledgeable mixologists is a plus.

Contact details: 106 Bis Rue Saint-Lazare, 75008 Paris

The Good Market

The gastronomic emporium of The Good Market department store has an excellent NA selection, Wright said. The selection includes French Bloom, a carbonated wine drink created by French model Constance Jablonski and American foodie entrepreneur Maggie Frerejean-Tattinger.

Contact details: 38 Rue de Sèvres, 75007 Paris

The Celestial Mary

The Celestial Mary in the Marais was one of the first small natural farm-to-table wines, and they usually have at least two NA cocktails on the menu, says Wright. Recently they also added Athletic Brewing, the NA beer from the USA.

Contact details: 1 Rue Commines, 75003 Paris

All of Paris

All of Paris in the White Horse Hotel offers some well-made NA options and stunning views. “In general,” says Wright, “the best bets for finding NA options are to seek out young chef restaurants open to global trends, or upscale bars and speakeasys, or five-star hotels that seem to have had a a head start on offering stylish NA offerings.

Wright thinks it may be because hotels like the Cheval Blanc have always understood true hospitality and how to meet the needs of their customers, “especially when some of those customers might be walking on a fashion show in a few hours, watching their weight or giving a press conference.”

Contact details: 8 Quai du Louvre, 75001 Paris

Everywhere that wears Umà Tonic

Wright is constantly on the lookout for Umà tonic, which she says is “a really delicious artisanal tonic water, produced right in Paris that I wish more places were carrying. It’s intriguing and delicious all on its own and of course an excellent blender.

The bottom line, says Wright, is that when you’re not drinking tonight for whatever reason and an establishment offers an attractive adult option, you feel welcome. “Other members of your group are more relaxed knowing that everyone is included and has what they need. And you don’t soon forget this hospitality.