The Beef Club Ballroom, Paris, France

A sneak peak at my upcoming LUXOS magazine interview featuring the Experimental Cocktail Group founders Romée, Pierre-Charles and Olivier.

 

The desire to found the Experimental Cocktail Club (ECC) goes back as far as they can remember- they just didn’t know that’s what they would call it. They, Romée de Goriainoff, Pierre-Charles Cros, and Olivier Bon, spent a lifetime planning the perfect venture that would join their passions for food, drink, and old-fashioned hard work. Today, these three minds are credited for rejuvenating and refining the cocktail culture in Paris, and around the world.

Paris, a city that is commonly 5 years behind the rest of the Western world in terms of cultural trends, has always been known for its fine wines and gourmet foods, but cocktails? Any corner café who serves that same old burnt espresso probably also serves an equally bottom-shelf mojito or gin and tonic. And Romée, Pierre-Charles and Olivier had had enough. Their palates were craving the artisanal cocktails they tasted at Milk & Honey in New York- the rare liquors and plant extracts, the vibe and allure of the speakeasy lounge.

Thus was born Paris’ Experimental Cocktail Club- an experience in the art of cocktails, and the pleasure of enjoying a handcrafted beverage. They enthralled themselves in the cocktail world, reading every book they could about how to do this and how to mix that, testing recipes, and eventually perfecting their cocktail identity.

Today, the Experimental Cocktail Group has become a household name around Paris foodies. After opening the original ECC, they expanded to the Curio Parlor, another left-bank cocktail haunt, followed by Prescription Cocktail, Companie des Vins Surnaturels, their first wine bar, and most recently, The Beef Club & Ballroom.

Their continued desire to discover the best of food and drink around the world has them creating new and innovative ways to share the pleasure of fine food and good drink with everyone- from Paris and London, to New York and Mexico City- where they are excited to announce the opening of their newest bar in the enchanting Condesa neighborhood of Mexico City.

So can Paris expect next from this group? How about “The Fish Club”…plans are in the works for a raw bar and fresh seafood restaurant rooted in their ideology of serving high quality ingredients, seasonal dishes and of course- killer drinks.

 

Here’s my rundown on the five Experimental Cocktail Group bars in Paris that are not to miss: 

Beef Club Restaurant, Paris, France

 

The Beef Club & Ballroom

The newest opening from the ECG trio, The Beef Club is a bringing the New York vibe to the chic Etienne Marcel neighbourhood of Paris’ right bank. The menu features, you guessed it- beef- by the star butcher Yves-Marie le Bourdonnec. From the décor and warm lighting, to the bustling and boisterous crowd, it’s the perfect restaurant
After dinner, head underground via spiral staircase into the cocktail lair that is, The Ballroom. Gentlemen be ware, the old-fashioned doorman will request you head down first, so as to catch the lady if she should stumble. Once inside, it’s easy to lose track of the night, sipping away on artisanal cocktails and dancing to jazz classics, or whatever the DJ of the night fancies.to enjoy with a group of friends. Be sure to reserve a table here, as they fill up quickly, and the best cuts go first.

What to order: The Beef Club’s fancy burger is never disappointing. After dinner, wash it down with a Salers Smash- Gentian mixed with Champagne, Absinthe, sugar, mint and lime.

 

58, rue Jean-Jacques-Rousseau, Paris 75001 | Telephone: +33 9 54 37 13 65 | Metro: Les Halles, Etienne Marcel

 

Experimental Cocktail Club / Paris

 

Experimental Cocktail Club 

The first of their cocktail bars that started the mixologist revolution in Paris, Experimental Cocktail Club is located behind a discreet door on a tiny street just off of the bustling market street, rue Montorgueil in the 2nd arrondissement. The velour-lined drinking den has just enough space to be intimate but not exclusive.

What to order: Go for the refreshing Tommy’s Margarita- a mix of 100% agave tequila, lime juice, organic honey, Bourbon vanilla and cloves.

 

Address: 37 Rue St-Sauveur, Paris, 75002 | Telephone :+33 1 45 08 88 09 | Metro: Sentier, Les Halles

Vue du bar et de la salle

 

Prescription Cocktail Club

By far the most dapper cocktail bar in Saint Germain, Prescription Cocktail Club features two stories of nooks and crannies perfect for cozying up and tasting your way through their killer cocktail menu. The third of five high-design drinking dens by the ECG guys, this bar mixes the speakeasy vibe of the Ballroom with the low-key vibe of the Experimental.

What to order: Try the Experience #1, the perfect summery elixir of elderflower, basil, lemongrass, vodka and lemon.

23 Rue Mazarine 75006 Paris | Telephone: +33 1 46 34 67 73 | Metro: Saint Germain des Près, Mabillon

 

Cocktail sur le bar

 

Curio Parlor 

Opened just after the original Experimental Cocktail Club, Curio Parlor is equal parts speakeasy and curiosity cabinet. Sipping craftsman cocktails while surrounded by Deyrolle-esque taxidermy is just the right amount of rococo meets trendy Paris. The main level is framed by the bar featuring vials and bottles of essences and rare extracts, while downstairs is where the real parties happen.

What to order: Try the Strawberry Fields, a bubbly mix of fresh berries, vodka and Champagne.

16 rue des Bernardins, 75006, Paris | Telephone: +33 1 44 07 12 47 | Metro: Maubert Mutualité

 

 

 

Bar a Vins - la Compagnie des Vins Surnaturels

 

Companie des Vins Surnaturels

While the Experimental Cocktail Group is all about cocktails, they forayed into the art of the wine bar with this swanky left-bank location where incredible wines are served both by the glass and bottle. Velvet covered cushions, a friendly bar staff, and candlelight are all you need to feel at home here.

What to order: Try the mystery glass of wine; if you can guess what it is, they’ll give you the bottle gratuit. 

7 rue Lobineau, 75006 | Tel. +33 9 5490 2020 | Metro: Odéon, Mabillon