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100 best restaurants: Small plates

We take you on a mini-tour of the restaurants where size doesn’t matter

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Luz Verde - DR / © Luz Verde

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Luz Verde - DR / © Mickael A. Bandassak

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Le Mary Céleste - DR / © Mary Céleste

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Le Mary Céleste - DR / © Mary Céleste

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Ito - DR / © Ito

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Ito - © Time Out Paris

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La Candelaria - © Time Out Paris / Laurie Grosset

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Le BAT - © Time Out Paris / Thierry Richard

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Le BAT - © Time Out Paris / Thierry Richard

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Le BAT - © Time Out Paris / Thierry Richard

You’ve probably been told this before, but size doesn’t matter. Need proof? It’s literally in the pudding: head to one of these spots, and you’ll see diners happily nibbling on mini waffles and pint-sized brownies. You can also satisfy your savoury tooth with a range of tapas-inspired cuisine: dumplings, tacos and tiny teriyaki skewers all feature. If you’re in need of a light repast to go with a drink or two, look no further.

Recommended: The 100 best restaurants in Paris

The best restaurants for small plates and tapas in Paris

Artisan

Recommended

Good luck asking for ‘the usual’ in this new bar in trendy SoPi (South Pigalle) – the menu changes every two weeks, in accordance with the seasonal produce and the whims of the owners. Artisan arrives on the cocktail scene with serious bourgeois credentials: it’s run by the team who brought Parisians Long Island meat platters, and the resident mixologist Frédéric Le Bordays is the man behind the cocktail recipe book ‘Les nouveaux cocktails classiques’...

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Pigalle

La Rallonge

Recommended

Geoffrey Millard follows up La Table d’Eugène with a venture in the same street, a fresh and modern tapas bar that shows some serious gastronomic nous. Don’t be put off by the crowds inside, as waiting here is all part of the fun. There are no reservations, you just have to patiently wait your turn while admiring the raw yet chic decoration: high stools and tables, cement floor tiles and a long bar in the corner...

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Mairie du 18e

La Pointe du Groin

Recommended

Named for a wild and rocky northern coast in Brittany, the new wine bar and restaurant from Thierry Breton is squeezed in between his two other hideaways on the Rue Belzunce, Chez Michel and Chez Casimir. The pretty, lively bar welcomes bohemian high jinks (there’s a grand piano ready and waiting under the glass roof) as well as more classy meals (on the big communal tables covered in red and white tablecloths)...

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Gare du Nord/Gare de l'Est

Ito

Recommended

As small and carefully designed as an origami crane, this Japanese eatery brings you all the charms of an authentic Nipponese izakaya (bar-cum-restaurant), minus the small crowd of drunken Japanese salarymen at the counter. The warm setting, redolent of cosy neighbourhood bars in Tokyo, puts you in the mood; but the real fun starts when the personable staff bring you the first dish...

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Pigalle

Le BAT

A rare discovery in the usually disappointing Grands Boulevards area, Le BAT is hidden away behind a charmless frontage that you’d hurry past if you didn’t know better. A ‘tartare bar’ at lunch and ‘tapas restaurant’ at dinner, the young chef Yariv Berrebi has made himself comfortable behind an enormous square bar, flanked by brightly-coloured stools and accompanied by a whole brigade of young cooks preparing the tapas and Asian-influenced dishes...

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Faubourg Montmartre

La Compagnie des Vins Surnaturels

Forget cheap plonk – both drinks and food here are nothing but the best. Behind the big bar of this dimly-lit dive, staff from the Experimental Cocktail Club, the Curio Parlor and Prescription have abandoned their mixers for straightforward bottles of red, white and pink. The result is a lovely, intimate wine bar, dotted with sofas and cosy corners. The wine list has more than 3,000 bottles listed, and to go with the booze, there are some first class things like burrata, prosciutto al tartufo, truffles and fine cheeses...

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Odéon

Aux Deux Amis

Recommended

Be warned: don’t rock up at Aux Deux Amis on a Friday night expecting to sit down. If, like most people, you haven’t reserved, you’ll be staking out a few square centimetres at the bar. Here you can chat with your neighbours while good-naturedly knocking into each other, wines and beers in hand. Then, it’s time to eat. The melting ‘Tortilla de Janine’, the princely acorn-fed ham with grilled almonds, the brilliant house mozzarella…

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Oberkampf

Candelaria

Recommended

Has Paris woken up to the temptations of the taco? Apparently so, thanks to this taqueria, with its almost totally expat clientele (English and American rather than Mexican). The tiny white room with its open kitchen, a few stools and communal tables doesn’t give a hint of the hip bar behind, where the neighbourhood’s youth come to sip margaritas or the house specials, like the guêpe verte [green wasp] (tequila, lime, pepper, cucumber, spices and agave syrup)...

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3rd arrondissement

Le Mary Céleste

It would be easy to walk straight past the latest venture from the team behind Candelaria and Le Glass – with its nondescript front door and simple neon sign, the Mary Céleste oyster bar looks more like a neighbourhood pizzeria than the newest, hippest destination in the Marais. But we like this lack of pretension, and the big bay windows that will remain steamed up throughout winter promise great things for pavement apéros in summer...

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The Marais

Buvette, gastrothèque

Recommended

‘Buvette’ is a very French term for an American business – a buvette would originally have been a far more down at heel drinking establishment. But behind the evocative name is Jody Williams, a purebred New Yorker, bringing a bit of Greenwich Village to the increasingly fashionable heart of Pigalle. There’s nothing ostentatious about the interior, all rough brick walls and wooden tables that sit well around the huge marble bar...

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Pigalle

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