Restaurant Reviews

DBB/Paris: A Modern Twist on Mexican Food and Cocktails in Paris

by Kate Robinson

HiP looks inside DBB/Paris, modern Mexican fare and cocktails in Paris' 11th arrondissement.

Shay Ola cuts an imposing figure in the tiny kitchen of DBB, his newly opened restaurant just around the corner from République. Tall and clad in a brown leather apron, he looks more like a blacksmith than one of the most recent chefs to take up residence in Paris.

HiP looks inside DBB/Paris, modern Mexican fare and cocktails in Paris' 11th arrondissement.

Originally from London, Shay came to Paris for what he describes as, “a scene where it’s still all about the food. Things are happening here at the moment and I want to be at the forefront of that,” he says.

HiP looks inside Death by Burrito, modern Mexican fare in Paris.

HiP looks inside DBB/Paris, modern Mexican fare and cocktails in Paris' 11th arrondissement.

A reinvention of his former London restaurant, Death by Burrito, DBB manages to be incredibly cool, genuinely friendly, and surprisingly affordable. This combination is no longer so hard to come by as young chefs like Shay, many of them foreign, flock to Paris and add their personal touch to the food scene.

HiP looks inside Death by Burrito, modern Mexican fare in Paris.

Shay’s contribution is a combination of bold, elegant flavors inspired by French and Mexican cuisine. Self-taught, he has no traditions tying him down, only a fierce desire to make impeccable food. “I like to start with local food and then find the connections to Mexican flavors,” he explains. DBB is a blank canvas that he intends to have fun with, adding a touch of the unexpected to come up with creations like soy-braised pork and kimchi tacos, guacamole with a sprinkling of pomegranate seeds, and mezcal-cured trout.

HiP looks inside DBB/Paris, modern Mexican fare and cocktails in Paris' 11th arrondissement.

A selection of imported Mexican ingredients impart authentic flavor to seasonal produce. “I’ve had people in from Mexico who tell me, ‘Wow, this reminds me of home!’” he says. Traditionalists will appreciate the handmade corn tacos; three hundred fly out of the kitchen every day.

HiP looks inside Death by Burrito, modern Mexican fare in Paris.

But soft-shell lobster tacos and sausage-laden oysters are only half the picture. Behind the bar, Candice, a veteran of Candelaria and Mama Shelter, crafts a rotating menu of inspired classics and all-new creations based on small-batch tequila and mezcal. If you’re curious like me, pull up a stool and ask her about meat-distilled mezcal.

HiP looks inside DBB/Paris, modern Mexican fare and cocktails in Paris' 11th arrondissement.

To top it all off, DBB regularly hosts some of the hottest DJs in London and Paris, adding good vibes to the list of reasons to make DBB your next evening destination.

HiP looks inside DBB/Paris, modern Mexican fare and cocktails in Paris' 11th arrondissement.

 

And be sure to follow DBB on Facebook to find out about upcoming events. Shay has big plans for the bar in 2015 …

DBB/PARIS – 4 rue de la Fontaine au Roi, 75011. Tel: +33 (0)1 43 55 14 40

Open Tuesday to Saturday, 7pm-2am. Kitchen closes at 11:30pm.Online reservations possible.

HiP looks inside Death by Burrito, modern Mexican fare in Paris.

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Written by Kate Robinson for the HiP Paris Blog. All images by ShakEatUp. Looking for a fabulous vacation rental in Paris, London, Provence, or Tuscany? Check out Haven in Paris.

Written By

Kate Robinson

Kate Robinson is an American in Paris. When she's not drinking craft beer or slathering baguettes with sheep cheese, she can be found planning her next outdoor adventure. Kate's writing has also appeared in publications such as Modern Farmer and France Today. View Kate Robinson's Website

4 comments on “DBB/Paris: A Modern Twist on Mexican Food and Cocktails in Paris

I have always thought Paris needs some good Mexican food. We run into a lot of Texas ex-pats when we visit and they ALWAYS tell me that the #1 thing they miss is quality Tex-Mex: guacamole, queso, tacos, burritos.

A good Mex or Tex-Mex spot would make a killing in Paris, IMO.

Have to try this place next time we visit! 🙂

Candice – yes! The French food is hard to resist, but there are some wonderful alternatives to check out, too. /Erin, HiP Paris

Kate, my maiden name was Robinson. We are related ..lol.
The first few times we were in Paris, I vowed not to eat anything but French food. Then I relaxed my strict rules and started eating different foods … I am sorry I never had Mexican food in Paris. Just another reason to go back again. and again.

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