One of the latest hot items in the Paris food and wine world, Au Passage has been garnering more than a bit of blogger buzz lately. It also just snagged the 2012 Prix Fooding d’amour, confirming its status as Paris’ newest foodie darling.  In the evenings, this low-key wine bar and tapas joint is jam packed with patrons partaking in small plates of munchies, various wines by the bottle and a bit of respectably rowdy foodie fun. Things take a different turn at noon with the (thankfully) limited lunch menu: one entrée, two choices of mains, one cheese, one dessert.  With kitchen talent coming from Spring and Le Verre Volé and carefully selected market-fresh fare, this spot is turning out some seriously savory meals.  I stopped in recently with three other food and drink-minded bloggers  ( Kasia/Love in the City of Lights, Caroline/Sweet Caroline in Paris and Erica/HiP Paris) to see how the lunch stacks up to the hype.

Mid-day ambiance:

Kasia: The decor takes simplicity and minimalism to a new level of chic.

Erica: This is my kind of place. Laid back and casual. Wood, red paint, bistro chairs, parquet floors, hipster servers and chalk board menus. Unpretentious and fun.

Caroline:  I LOVE the old leather chairs, and appreciate the great mix of comfy seating, proper tables, and bar stools.

Forest: At lunchtime, it’s filled to (and sometimes beyond) capacity with local business owners and loyal fans trekking from across town to check out the latest lunch menu in a laid-back, bric-a-brac ambiance.

Lunch Menu:

Kasia: Presentation is creative and refined; flavors are fresh and plentiful. Wines to compliment.

Erica: Short, sweet, and to the point. Fresh, pretty, and tasty. The sheer opposite of standard American menus with endless possibilities.

Caroline: Yum! Light, fresh, market-friendly, sustainable, seasonal choices. All of my favorite words. And, well, the wine…

Forest:  Seafood is always perfectly cooked, and the staff is not afraid to forgo easy wine pairing options to offer interesting and appropriate suggestions.

Quality/Price ratio

Kasia:  Utmost quality for the lunch prix fixe.

Erica: From 9€50 – 19€. From just a main to a four course meal. A deal in my book, and a delicious one at that.

Caroline: Here’s the kicker–the lunch deal is an amazing value. Go for lunch. Just do it. Now.

Forest: Best lunch deal in town, hands down.


Kasia: Discreetly hidden down an alleyway in the 11th, a destination in itself.

Erica: Funky, hip and off the beaten track, but not too far off. Just close enough to the Merci store for a quick pop-in after a meal and a stroll on to the Marais from there.

Caroline: Ok, I may be biased, but this is one of my favorite ‘hoods in Paris these days (no, I don’t live there). Convenient from Republique & Bastille, but still on a quiet passage. What more could you ask for?

Forest: With neighbors like Grazie, Candelaria and l’Entree des Artistes, the area is fast becoming a foodie favorite while still retaining its own sketchily quirky feel.


Desert: Chocolate ganache with figs and hazlenuts

Au Passage
1bis passage Saint Sébastien, 75011
+33 (0)
Métro: Saint-Sébastien – Froissart
Open: Mon 11am – 1am, Tue – Fri 11am – 2pm, Sat 6pm-2am

A peek at the dinner menu

Related links:

Compiled by Forest Collins for the HiP Paris blog. All photos Erica BermanLooking for a fabulous vacation rental in Paris, Provence, or Tuscany? Check out Haven in Paris.


Forest Collins

Forest Collins chronicles her search for the finest cocktails in Paris on her blog, 52 Martinis. Every Wednesday, she tries a new place. She starts with a martini for a standard of comparison and then usually orders a second. Got a bar you think makes great drinks? Let her know, she’d love to try it!


  1. The hidden location makes you feel like you’ve stumbled upon Parisian treasure. We’re enjoying this wave of new French tapas style restaurants!

  2. Looks fantastic, delicious, fresh, tasty, simple, colorful, friendly, relaxed, and well, can’t wait to try it! Is it an American place? Wondering by the small mention of the menu not being the typical American overwhelming amount of choices?

  3. My kind of place. I love the mismatchedness. (made that word up). Small, charming places like this are cropping up in my Toronto neighbourhood…. but then you have to go outside. Uggh! Dundas Street in Toronto just doesn’t cut it.

  4. This looks and sounds perfect, especially the simplicity of the menu and decor. Plus it is in my neighborhood! Thanks for the tip.

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