While people so often talk about Paris in the spring, fall certainly shouldn't be overlooked. Here in the city, leaves are changing, everyone is donning a chunkier scarf than usual, and after a summer of rose, you're ready for some heartier, soul-warming drink and fare.
What does Paris taste like in the fall? I've rounded up a few personal favorites, from outdoor markets to craft beer bars, all perfect to spend a little time on a chilly autumn day.
1. Marché Biologique Raspail
This organic open air market held on Sunday mornings is always a feast for the eyes and stomach. Walk through and explore the seasonal produce, and stop along the way to taste. You can snag a thick hot chocolate from the lovely ladies at O'Regal Muffins, and be sure to hit up the "galette man" at the entrance to the market; his potato and onion galettes can't be missed.
2. La Fine Mousse
4 bis Avenue Jean Aicard, 11th arrondissement
Craft beer lovers can happily spend an entire afternoon at La Fine Mousse, tasting their way through the variety of microbrews from around France and Europe. The cozy, cave feel of the space is perfect for a fall drink. For the true connoisseur, book a spot at the new La Fine Mousse restaurant right across the street where they're specializing in food and beer pairings.
3. La Vache Dans Les Vignes
46 Quai de Jemmapes, 10th arrondissement
A good glass of wine and a good cheese will get you far on a blustery day. But a few glasses of good wine and a few good cheeses are even better. Let the guys at La Vache dans les Vignes lead you in the right direction, with a trim but well curated selection of cheese and wine. As an added benefit, the floor to ceiling windows let you look over the action on Canal Saint Martin.
19 Rue Lucien Sampaix, 10th arrondissement
For those mornings when you just can't seem to warm up, Holybelly will do the trick; because a hearty breakfast and a big mug of strong coffee is always the thing to get your day going. Holybelly has garnered a following, and for a good reason. Ingredients are in season and sourced locally whenever possible, the coffee is good, and portion sizes are generous. Go hungry; they're known for their eggs.
5. Le Grand 8
8 Rue Lamarck, 18th arrondissement
Montmartre is always a popular destination, and in the fall its hilly cobblestone streets are even more quaint then usual. After a chilly afternoon of exploring, you'll want to warm up with a good glass of wine and a traditional French dinner. Look no further than Le Grand 8 which is perched on the hill just to the east of Sacre Coeur. This is a hidden gem in the midst of plenty tourist traps.
6. Cafe de la Nouvelle Mairie
19 Rue des Fossés Saint-Jacques, 5th arrondissement
Nestled in right behind the Pantheon, Cafe de la Nouvelle Mairie is your stereotypical, classic Parisian bistro. They're open all day, which means coffee in the morning, a full lunch and dinner service, and the chance to pop in for a glass of wine and a plate of cheese at any time you're feeling peckish and in need of a drink. The menu features ingredients bought fresh that day, and changes constantly depending on what's in season and available.
14 Rue Ternaux, 11th arrondissement
Are you gluten-free and visiting Paris? Not to fear. Chambelland has everything you ever wanted, and even if you're gluten tolerant, the mastery of pastries and breads at this bakery is definitely worth a visit. The flours, mostly buckwheat and rice, are milled in the south of France.
8. Chez Casimir
6 Rue de Belzunce, 10th arrondissement
One of famed restaurateur Thierry Breton's three establishments, Chez Casimir is the place for the ultimate weekend brunch experience. Served on Saturdays and Sundays, besides your entree and plat there's also the self-serve table, filled with salads, pates and an enormous mound of salted butter. Save room for dessert, which gets its own buffet table in the back. Best of all? You're encouraged to go into the wine cellar and choose your own bottle. Weekend brunch gets popular; be sure to reserve.
9. Henri Leroux
1 Rue de Bourbon le Château, 6th arrondissement
If you're exploring Saint Germain, make sure you plan some time to pop into the Henri Leroux boutique. Trained as a chocolate maker in Switzerland, Leroux is known for his salted butter caramels, a nod to his native Brittany. Pop a few in your pocket so they're nice and soft for an afternoon treat as you stroll through the Latin Quarter.
47 Rue de Babylone, 7th arrondissement
The ideal fall afternoon definitely requires a coffee break. In the heart of the 7th arrondissement, you'll find Coutume, a cafe and coffee roaster that has had a big influence on Paris' evolving coffee scene. Here you can get everything from an espresso to a V60, and even buy coffee beans to take with you. Who doesn't want to get Parisian roasted beans as a gift?