If you’re looking for wine in Paris, I like your odds. While there is no shortage of cafés, bars and restaurants for the transient oenophile to pop into for a drink, La Compagnie des Vins Surnaturels offers more than just a great selection of wines by the bottle or glass, fluctuating month to month between 20 to 30 euros by the glass and 300 to 400 euros by the bottle.
The bar’s slick interior was designed by Dorothée Meilichzon and has a jazz age vibe with white tin ceilings accented by Louis XVI pieces as well as mid-century furniture. Patrons can sit on high stools at the long mahogany bar that occupies the left side of the room, or snag a cozy table by the backroom fireplace if all the spots in front of the picture windows facing the street have been taken.
Fans of the Experimental crew’s (Olivier Bon, Romée de Goriainoff, Pierre-Charles Cros) other bars may be surprised by the lack of a cocktail list, but they will recognize the familiar black and white striped awning and the conspicuous lack of a name or sign out front.
Owner Olivier Bon says cocktails will always be his first love, but he wanted to create a new kind of wine bar, “Cocktails are our passion, but we are not just complete cocktail geeks. We really like wine and good food.” Although there is no kitchen, the bar also offers a selection of small plates of high quality meats and cheeses served alongside slices of fresh bread from Poujauran. The truffled ham as well as the burrata with sea salt, olive oil and a dash of pepper are particularly popular at the moment.
Bon explained that wine is part of French culture, but it isn’t accessible to everyone. With bottles ranging from 20 euros to 3,500 euros per, there is something for almost all tastes. However, Bon and company have a more cultured customer in mind. “Our main customers are people who
appreciate quality and are willing to pay a little bit more for quality and design. It’s not for the guy who wants a 3 euro glass of wine.”
During a recent early evening rendez-vous at Compagnie, a patron put her glass of red aside and assessed the crowd, “It’s a nice change from the regular cafés and it’s still very preserved from Americans and other tourist invaders. I’m hoping it will stay this way.” So for now, it’s just our
La Compagnie des Vins Surnaturels
7 Rue Lobineau, Paris, 75006 France