The best table football bars in Paris

Keen to simulate some World Cup action without actually doing any exercise? Head to one of our favourite foosball bars

© EChirache

There's something compulsive about watching twenty-two men spin around on the spot with all the artlessness of the English national team. No matter the crowd, no matter the vibe, we believe that every bar is better off with a table football table tucked away in a corner somewhere – heck, we've even set one up in the Time Out offices to keep us sane. For a while, it seemed as if trends had overtaken us and foosball was on its way out of the capital; but whether because of Brazil 2014, anticipation of the France 2016 Euro Cup, or simply a collective brainwave on the part of bar managers across the city, the tables are creeping back into Paris's bars. These, then, are the best places to go for a pint and a game or three. Just remember: No spinning.

Pignon

3 out of 5 stars

Opened last July, Pignon is known for its double terrace near Jardin des Batignolles. Inside, we love the star of the bar: no, not the beautiful wooden counter but the football table that lives in the basement.  Under the pretty wicker lamps, you can drink some good wines (mostly organic), or for beer lovers you can have a pint (1664 at €5.50) and a few bottled beers (but others are on their way we are assured)...

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Batignolles

La Divette de Montmartre

3 out of 5 stars

An old school bar-tabac in the heart of Montmartre, which recalls the beatnik and rock bistros of the 1970s with its table football, ancient stickers, Beatles records and walls covered with old vinyl. Serge, the owner, is a neighbourhood character with a reputation for grumpiness, which the regulars love, and although a little prickly he’s basically a nice guy. His dive doesn’t just attract nostalgics but all rock fans, thanks to the live music put on every Friday...

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18e arrondissement
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Le Kremlin

4 out of 5 stars
Recommended

A Russian outpost in the middle of Pigalle? It’s not, in fact, a hostess bar, but a rather a super cool new venue that’s been heaving from the word go – it’s difficult to clear a path to the bar through the mob to order one of the fantastic imported vodkas or original cocktails (€8 to €11). The young team aren’t afraid to blast out a good selection of music, or to throw together bold mixtures of local and imported booze. Try the Negroni Lenin (honey-flavoured 42 Below vodka, Gran Classico and Campari), the Red Star (mezcal, fresh beetroot and Carpano) or even the Red Army (Gin Carpano, green Chartreuse and orange bitters)...

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Abbesses

Le Fantôme

4 out of 5 stars

Only the black lacquered tiling of the building gives away the location of Le Fantôme, the new venue from the crew behind Le Baron. The enormous space is a fantasy venue for fans of retrogaming: as well as a huge bar, formica chairs and faux leather banquettes, the Fantôme offers a fistful of arcade games, a Pacman table (which is often reserved) and a superb table football set. Drinks-wise, the resident mixologist is an inspired Californian called David West who refuses to churn out mojitos, but has instead produced a list of five inventive cocktails...

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Poissonnière
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L'Inconnu

4 out of 5 stars
Recommended

The team managing the venue know what they’re doing, and the friendly welcome, comfy sofa, soft lighting and cheap Parisian beer (Gallia) encouraging chat and chance encounters. Even better is the busy event schedule, particularly the DJ sets on Thursdays, Fridays and Saturdays that often feature big names like Teki Latex, Supa Never Smiles or Acid Washed. The downstairs dance floor area stays open until 2am and is a good place to meet the local population of hipsters, artists and musicians, or anyone just looking for a good tune...

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Grands Boulevards

La Place Verte

4 out of 5 stars

Next to the famous Café Charbon, the big, beautiful terrace of La Place Verte stretches out over a small shady square. It goes without saying that it’s rammed on sunny days, but if you can’t get a table, the inside isn’t bad either. The café was renovated in 2011, and the new '70s-inspired ‘design’ décor is a pleasant background to an evening drink with friends. Armchairs in green velvet, big cantine-style tables, thick orange curtains and a table football set jumble together harmoniously in the enormous space...

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Folie-Méricourt
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Rosa Bonheur sur Seine

3 out of 5 stars

Following Rosa Bonheur in the heart of the Parc Buttes-Chaumont and En Attendant Rosa on the banks of the Seine, we now have Rosa Bonheur sur Seine: a peniche moored hard by the Pont Alexandre III. The boat, all wood and glass, offers the calming swell of the water and an unbeatable view of the bateaux-mouches sailing by. At the time of writing, work on the space is still on going (particularly downstairs), but it is open and equipped with a table football set, bar (sip Pernod at €3 a glass) and kitchen turning out fresh sandwiches with interesting fillings...

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Invalides

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