Eating Vegan in Paris? C'est Magnifique!
CGT SOCIETY MEMBER, Tara, Guides you to Awesome Vegan Food and Cocktails in Paris
I recently made my first visit to the City of Lights, and while I was beyond excited to take in the sights, I was dubious about the possibility of good vegan eats there. I envisioned menus filled with snails, butter and cheese. And while all of the above were present on many restaurant menus (along with foie gras being nearly ubiquitous - bummer), there were a surprising amount of excellent vegan options – so many that in a week’s time, I couldn’t even make it through my wish list of restaurants.
You can’t mention eating in Paris without talking about falafel...
L’AS DU FALLAFEL
Address: 34 rue des Rosiers, 75004
Hours: Open everyday form 11am to 12am closed Saturday
Like most of the restaurants on this street, you can grab your falafel to-go at a pick up window or eat inside (usually at a higher price). Expect a line at L’as Du for either option at all times of day, but the eat-inside line is actually shorter so we opted for that. My husband and I both had the falafel special sandwich, which contains eggplant, a cabbage mix and hummus along with the falafel – all served on the most wonderfully soft and fluffy pita.
Adding eggplant to a falafel sandwich is a genius move that I’m going to copy from here on out.
TIP: Skip the “hot sauce” they put on the table – it’s super salty and not spicy at all.
Address: 54 Rue des Rosiers, 75004 Paris, France
Hours: 11:30am-12am CLOSED: Monday
This was my favorite of the three by just a smidgen!
The falafel has the best spices and the most perfect texture – crispy on the outside, fluffy on the inside. We again had the falafel special sandwich and it also comes with eggplant, hummus and other veggies, similar to L’as Du. It was really a close tie between the two, but the wonderfully seasoned falafel pushed Chez Hanna over the top for me. We got our sandwiches to go this time and sat on a nearby curb and devoured them while trying not to splash tahini on our shoes. I was maybe 75% successful in this effort.
I was going to list these in order of preference, but then I realized that I love them all and can’t pick a favorite!
Address: 55 Rue des Archives, 75003 Paris, France
This tiny, adorable spot located in the Marais serves up amazing house-made veggie burgers with a variety of toppings and some of the best thick-cut, well seasoned fries I’ve ever had. The burger itself has a fairly meaty consistency and they use a whole wheat grilled bun. (Yay for non-white buns!) This place is super affordable – I think 12 EUR for a burger, fries and organic beer. Can’t beat that!
LE GRENIER NOTRE DAME
Address: 18 Rue de la Bûcherie, 75005 Paris, France
MY HUSBAND AND I LOVED THIS PLACE SO MUCH WE ATE THERE TWICE!
This cozy little spot is tucked on a side street along the Left Bank, a short walk from Notre Dame. The service is impeccable, the wine list is impressive and affordable, and the dishes were among the most delicious I’ve tasted anywhere. I had the couscous vegetarian, which is cooked and served in a clay pot and comes with an assortment of vegetables, Moroccan spices and homemade; it was utter perfection. The laid-back, homey vibe here makes it the perfect choice for anything from a casual lunch to a romantic date.
Address: 24 Rue Cail, 75010 Paris, France
This awesome vegetarian Indian restaurant has a few locations around town – we hit up the one in the Latin Quarter (near Notre Dame). Their hours seemed a bit unreliable and we had to try a few times before we caught them when they were open, but it was worth it! Like most vegetarian Indian restaurants, their menu includes Southern items like dosa. There are few things I love more in this world than dosa, and theirs didn’t disappoint!
Address: 14, Rue Bichat Paris, France
Hours: 12-2:30pm 6:30-10:30pm. Closed Tuesdays.
This all-vegetarian Asian restaurant is easy to overlook, on a non-descript street not far from Place de la République – between the 3rd and 10th arr. When we arrived at another vegetarian restaurant we wanted to try and it was closed, a helpful lady working there suggested Tien Hiang. If, like me, you are in love with faux meats, this is your joint! We had a faux chicken and faux beef dish and both were among the better mock meats I’ve had. It’s a small, bright little spot and they have an English version of their menu, which is always a nice (while not expected) feature.
Shake n’ Smash
Address: 87 Rue de Turbigo, 75003 Paris, France
Above: Esquisse No 1 at Shake n’ Smash & Basillic Instinct at Shake n’ Smash
We stumbled upon this posh craft-cocktail bar while strolling around the République area in the 3rd and even managed to catch them during happy hour! The digs are fairly fancy here, but people were dressed a range of casual to dressy. The cocktails were made with care and flourish – and were incredibly tasty!
EXPERIMENTAL COCKTAIL CLUB
Address: 37 Rue Saint-Sauveur, 75002 Paris, France
Hours: Fri-Sat 7pm-4am, Sun 8-2am, Mon-Thurs 7-2am
WEBSITE: not reliable. FACEBOOK
This speakeasy style bar is in the Latin Quarter, and you’ll want to look up the address before you head over as in true speakeasy style, there is no signage on the outside. This dimly lit, lovely space has 2 floors, both of which are cozy and inviting. The cocktails live up to what you would expect from this type of bar – loaded with flavors like lemongrass, basil and elderflower – YUM!
Address: 109 Boulevard Haussmann, 75008 Paris, France
Hours: Verify on website
This adorable apple-themed restaurant and bar is, in my humble opinion, the only good reason to bother going to the 8th. See the Champs-Elysées if you MUST, but then high-tail it over to Pomze for the best hard cider selection I’ve ever encountered. I can’t swear that anything on the food menu is vegan, as we stuck to the ciders, but this is worth the trip alone. I could have sat there all night trying one cider after another!
Address: 14 Rue Hautefeuille, 75006 Paris, France
Hours: Thurs-Sat 7pm-4am, CLOSED Sun-Mon, Tues-Wed 7pm-2am
This fabulous craft-cocktail bar situated between Odeon and St Michel in the 6th was my favorite bar of the trip!
The space is adorable and quirky – lined with wood and cool touches like safari-style lamp shades – and they play a great blend of more obscure music from the 50s, 60s and 70s. The cocktails were expertly made, and the bartender was friendly and helpful. It’s hard to describe the utterly cool vibe of this place, so you’ll just have to go visit and experience it for yourself!
BREAKFAST AND WRAP UP
Vegans of the world, as you already know, finding vegan breakfast while traveling is the holy grail of discoveries.
I sadly have no wisdom to impart to you regarding vegan breakfast finds in Paris. I can tell you that the espresso (although they surprisingly pronounced it expresso) is plentiful and delicious and will confess that I enjoyed a pain au chocolate (so not vegan) at the lovely and quintessentially Parisian Café St. Regis on the Île Saint-Louis every morning of my trip.
If you are a strict vegan, you should pack some breakfast bars or something similar to get you through the mornings. I’m a bit flex, especially while traveling, so this option worked for me. Paris is one of the most magical places I’ve ever been and lived up to (and even surpassed) everything I imagined it would be. I’m so happy that it turns out it’s extremely vegan-friendly on top of being completely enchanting in all other ways.