10 Best Paris Cafes for The Parisian Experience

When I think of Paris, nibbling croissants and coffee sitting over cute tables facing out to the sidewalk is foremost what I imagine. People watching while sipping on a latte and biting into a breakfast pastry is somewhat of an experience I consider qienessentially Parisian. You can go to a cafe anywhere but thre is something someabout this experience which is uniqely Parisian because this is more than about being in a cafe, its about slowing down and experienceing the simplicity of the day while enjoying ones food and taking in their surroundings and capturing the moment. In Paris, cafes can be wide ranging, from your traditional coffee houses serving pastries and coffee to cute bistro serving a french classic omelette to your all days spaces which start the day as a cafe and by eveninng trasport into your hipster wine bar. Having been a good amount of such places over my many trips to Paris while living in London – I decided to create a list to cover the best of all of these.

Best Paris Cafes

1. Café de Flore
Location: Saint-Germain-des-Prés
Cost: $$$
Fun Fact: Founded in the 1880s, Café de Flore has been a hub for intellectual giants, including Jean-Paul Sartre and Albert Camus, who would engage in philosophical debates here.

Café de Flore, nestled in the heart of Saint-Germain-des-Prés, is an iconic Parisian gem. This historic café has welcomed the city’s intellectuals, writers, and artists for over a century. As you enter, you’ll be transported to a bygone era with its ornate art deco interior, rich mahogany furnishings, and mirrored walls. The extensive outdoor seating is perfect for observing the lively streets of Saint-Germain-des-Prés. Try the legendary hot chocolate or savor the creamy escargot pastries, which pair perfectly with a café crème. Café de Flore isn’t just a café; it’s a time machine to the Paris of Hemingway and Picasso, and a must-visit for history and coffee enthusiasts.

Le Maison Rose, Paris

2. Le Maison Rose
Location: Montmartre
Cost: $$
Fun Fact: Le Maison Rose was a favorite haunt of the artist Maurice Utrillo, who found inspiration in the pink-painted charm of this café.

Nestled in the charming neighborhood of Montmartre, Le Maison Rose is a vision of the Paris you’ve always imagined. Its pale pink façade, draped in ivy, is nothing short of Instagram-worthy. Once inside, you’ll be greeted by an eclectic mix of vintage furnishings and local artwork adorning the walls. The cobblestone courtyard is perfect for an alfresco meal. Don’t miss their delicious crêpes, from the classic sugar-and-lemon to savory delights. Le Maison Rose is where the artistic spirit of Montmartre still thrives, making it a hidden gem for creatives and romantics alike.

3. La Palette
Locaton: Saint-Germain-des-Prés
Cost: $$
Fun Fact: La Palette was a favorite of Pablo Picasso, who often paid for his tab with his artwork. He’s said to have painted on the café’s ceiling.

For an authentic Parisian café experience, head to La Palette in Saint-Germain-des-Prés. This charming spot has a history that dates back to the 19th century, and it’s been an artist and writer haunt ever since. The cozy, dimly lit interior is adorned with vintage posters and mismatched furniture. La Palette boasts a beautiful terrace, perfect for enjoying a sunny day with a glass of wine. Try their croque-monsieur and a glass of chilled rosé – it’s the epitome of a casual Parisian meal. Whether you’re an art lover or just seeking a slice of Parisian bohemia, this café is a gem.

Le Consulat, Paris

4. Le Consulat
Location: Montmartre
Cost: $$

Fun Fact: Located at the base of the famed Montmartre hill, Le Consulat was a favorite spot for artists such as Vincent van Gogh and Pierre-Auguste Renoir.

Le Consulat in Montmartre is a classic Parisian bistro with a façade that’s as picturesque as the art it inspired. Its cobalt blue exterior and vibrant red awnings stand out against the charming cobblestone streets. The interior boasts a cozy, rustic aesthetic with wooden beams and checkered tablecloths. While the menu offers a range of French classics, their escargot and duck confit are noteworthy. This café is a favorite among artists and creatives, offering a taste of old-world Paris and inspiring vistas of the surrounding neighborhood.

Shakespeare and Co, Paris

5. Shakespeare and Company Café
Location: Latin Quarter
Cost: $$

Fun Fact: The café is an extension of the famed Shakespeare and Company bookstore, and it’s named in honor of the original Shakespeare and Company bookstore that was a gathering place for famous writers like Ernest Hemingway and F. Scott Fitzgerald.

For a unique Parisian café experience, venture into the Latin Quarter and visit Shakespeare and Company Café. This literary haven is an extension of the legendary Shakespeare and Company bookstore, where luminaries like Ernest Hemingway and James Joyce once roamed. The café’s charming interiors are lined with bookshelves, offering a quiet place to read while sipping a cappuccino. The courtyard is a tranquil escape from the bustling streets of Paris. The café’s signature “tartine,” an open-faced sandwich, is a must-try. The café brings the magic of books and the joy of coffee together, making it a haven for bookworms and dreamers.

Matcha Latte
Hardware Societe Paris
French Toast

6. Hardware Societie
Location: Montmartre
Cost: $$$
Fun Fact: The original Hardware Societe first opened in Melbourne and became an instant cult favourite amongst the weekend brunch crowd. Having gone to both, I can say from experience that the one in Paris is definitely my favourite! It has a more relaxing atmosphere and a pictureque setting overlooking Monmartre.

Nestled in the artistic neighborhood of Montmartre, Hardware Societé is a hidden gem that’s been making waves in the Parisian cafe scene. Known for its inventive and decadent break fast creations, this cafe is a delightful fusion of Parisian charm and Melbourne-style brunch.

The interiors of Hardware Societé are a blend of rustic elegance with exposed brick walls, vintage lighting, and a touch of greenery. It’s a stylish, yet cozy spot that welcomes all, from solo travelers to couples and groups of friends. The real star here, though, is the food. With a menu that’s a gastronomic journey, be prepared to be amazed. Dishes like the ‘Croissant Stuffed with Scrambled Eggs and Bacon’ and ‘French Toast with Lavender Honey’ are as delicious as they sound.

What sets Hardware Societé apart is its emphasis on quality ingredients and presentation. Each plate is a work of art, and the flavors are a symphony for your taste buds. Whether you’re a foodie looking for the next Instagram-worthy dish or a coffee lover in search of the perfect brew, Hardware Societé delivers on both fronts. The coffee here is outstanding, plus if you aren’t a fan of coffee, I must say their matcha latte is unbeatable!

Le Bossue, Paris

7. Le Bossue
Location: Latin Quarter
Cost: $$

Fun Fact: Le Bossue, a neighborhood favorite, gets its name from the misshapen ceiling beams that give the café its distinctive character.

Le Bossue, tucked away in the heart of the Latin Quarter, is a cherished neighborhood café known for its distinctive character. The name, which translates to “The Hunchback,” is derived from the café’s unique feature – its charmingly misshapen ceiling beams that add to the quirky ambiance.

The interiors of Le Bossue exude a warm and welcoming atmosphere with vintage posters, cozy seating, and, of course, those characteristic hunchbacked beams. It’s the perfect spot for a casual rendezvous or solo coffee break. The menu boasts a delightful array of French delights, from quiches to croissants, all served with a side of Parisian charm.

Le Bossue has an authentic Parisian vibe that appeals to locals and travelers alike. It’s the ideal place to soak in the literary and bohemian spirit of the Latin Quarter while enjoying a classic French meal. So, whether you’re a fan of the works of Hemingway and Sartre or simply a traveler in search of genuine Parisian hospitality, Le Bossue offers a delightful experience that’s sure to leave you with fond memories of your time in Paris.

Cafe Kitsume, Paris

8. Cafe Kitsume
Location: Palais-Royal
Cost: $$

Fun Fact: Café Kitsuné is the ultimate fusion of Parisian elegance and Tokyo cool – a hangout where style and flavor collide in the most Instagrammable way.

Let me spill the beans on a Parisian gem that’s got the young and trendy crowd absolutely buzzing – Café Kitsuné in the heart of Palais-Royal. Now, this isn’t your typical café; it’s the brainchild of Maison Kitsuné, a famous fashion brand and music label, known for its iconic French-Japanese fusion.

Picture this: You walk in, and it’s like stepping into a style vortex where Parisian chic meets Tokyo’s cool kid vibes. The café’s design is modern minimalism with a cozy twist, and you can’t miss the adorable Kitsuné fox logo – it’s pretty much their mascot. But what’s the real deal here? The coffee, of course! They’ve got all sorts of brews, from the classics to trendy sips that will light up your taste buds.

Now, when it comes to food, Café Kitsuné takes it to the next level with pastries that are basically edible art. Imagine munching on a matcha croissant or indulging in a yuzu tart – it’s like a flavor explosion in your mouth.

Whether you’re a fashionista, a music lover, or just a café-hopping enthusiast, Café Kitsuné Paris is the place to be. It’s where style is a language, and every sip and bite is a work of art.

Le Chat Ivre, Paris
Le Chat Ivre, Paris

9. Le Chat Ivre
Location: Bastille
Cost: $$

Fun Fact: The name literally translates to “The Drunken Cat,” this place is the perfect culmination of a cute wine bar, great food and casual people watching vibe.

Nestled in the lively Bastille neighborhood, Le Chat Ivre is a hidden gem that’s worthy of your culinary exploration. This unassuming spot, located at 22 Rue des Taillandiers, might just be the best-kept secret for foodies in the know. What sets this place apart? Let’s dive in and discover.

First things first, you’ll love the pricing here. It’s the sweet spot between affordable and indulgent, making it the ideal destination for anyone who appreciates exceptional cuisine without the hefty price tag. But, as any Parisian foodie would tell you, it’s not just about the cost; it’s about the experience.

Le Chat Ivre has a knack for crafting exceptional dishes that are as pleasing to the wallet as they are to your taste buds. Each plate is thoughtfully prepared, an artful presentation that promises an unforgettable meal. And while you’re here, you’ll have the chance to explore a diverse wine list that caters to all palates, from the casual wine enthusiast to the seasoned connoisseur. We found the vibe cosy andcute, yet underrated. The staff really know their wines and were able to help us find the perfect pairing!

Le Château d'Eu

10. Le Château d’Eu
Location: La Marais
Cost: $$

Fun Fact: Le Château d’Eu houses a fascinating collection of vintage postcards, each telling a unique story of Paris through the years, making it a hidden treasure trove for postcard enthusiasts. ????????️

When it comes to Parisian cafes, the options are endless, but there’s one spot that offers a unique twist on the traditional Parisian experience – Le Château d’Eu in the 3rd Arrondissement. This hidden gem is a haven for those in the know, and it’s the perfect place for 20-40 something travelers seeking a taste of the local scene.

What sets Le Château d’Eu apart is its commitment to preserving history. Housed in a 17th-century building, it exudes an old-world charm that instantly transports you back in time. Fun fact: This historic building was once a favorite haunt of French intellectuals who gathered here to discuss literature and philosophy. The interiors feature vintage chandeliers, plush velvet seating, and antique mirrors, creating an atmosphere that’s equal parts cozy and luxurious. It’s the kind of place where you can sit for hours, sipping on a café crème while feeling like you’re part of a classic French novel.

But it’s not just the ambiance that’s noteworthy. Le Château d’Eu offers a culinary journey that pays homage to traditional French fare. You’ll find classic dishes like croque-monsieur and escargot, as well as a delectable selection of pastries. Pair your meal with a rich espresso or a glass of fine French wine. This cafe is a hidden treasure for those looking to immerse themselves in the rich history and culinary delights of Paris. It’s a must-visit for history buffs, foodies, and anyone seeking an authentic Parisian experience. Vive la France! ????????️

In conclusion, Paris’ cafes are more than just places to eat and drink; they are vibrant pieces of the city’s history, culture, and soul. Each café on this list offers a unique Parisian experience, whether you’re seeking literary inspiration, historical connections, or simply a charming ambiance to savor the city’s culinary delights. So, fellow wanderers, embrace the art of leisurely coffee sipping, delightful pastry nibbling, and experiencing the essence of Paris through these exquisite cafes. Your journey into the heart of Paris awaits, one sip at a time. Enjoy!