La Cave à Bulles


54 Reviews
Place Score:
La Cave à BullesLa Cave à Bulles

Type: Store

45 Rue Quincampoix
Paris, 75004

+ 33 1 40 29 03 69 | map

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Added by thierrynantes on 05-02-2009

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Reviews: 54 | Ratings: 83
Photo of ColoradoVOL
5/5  rDev +6.8%


I visited this establishment while on a visit to Paris with my wife and in-laws. Before leaving the States, I contacted the owner Simon and proposed a trade. I brought along a Great Divide Hercules Double IPA, Great Divide Yeti Oak Aged Stout, Avery Hog Heaven and a home brewed chocolate porter.

Simon met us at the door with a smile and was very excited by our "big" American beers. He was a gracious host, not only suggesting and thoroughly explaining his favorite French craft beer, but also taking time to detail the nuances of the industry in his country.

As we were leaving a brewer from Brasserie Thiriez (brewery) drove up with a delivery and we had the opportunity to make his acquaintance. One of the selections Simon recommended happened to be his Etoile du Nord - looking forward to giving it a try.

I'd highly recommend swinging by Simon's shop and taking home a few souvenirs.

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Photo of RblWthACoz
5/5  rDev +6.8%

Wow. This place is great. If you are coming to Paris, it's imperative that you visit here. I mean, absolutely necessary. A wide selection of French beers tops anything you will find anywhere else in Paris. There certainly isn't every single craft beer made in France here, but there is such a large variety, that you'll find plenty to drink. And on top of that there is a huge amount of Cantillon brews to choose from. More than you would normally find in NYC even. But I am here for French beer. My first visit I grabbed four bottles from Brasserie des Garrigues and Saint Colombe. They were all tasty and I drank them at night. On my next visit I must have grabbed 30-some beers. As far as service goes: Simon is the man. Quite ready to tell you about any beer or brewery you should ask about (and in English no less!), he brings a wealth of knowledge about anything you'll want to know about. Not only that, he's completely honest and forthcoming about whatever topic comes up.

I think Simon is several years ahead of the beer curve here. If Paris is any indicator, France is where the U.S. was about 15-20 years ago and people like Simon should be supported at all costs. If you are visiting, I'm not sure what more you could ask for with so many French beers being available here. And if you're French, you definitely need to show love to your beer industry and shop here routinely. And if all of that isn't good enough, there are plenty of big hitting Belgians to go for as well (Cantillon, trappists, Brasserie la Senne, etc.) Stellar. And I am happy to make this my first perfectly rated beer establishment.

Quite close to Centre Pompidou.

P.S. Simon loves hoppy beers. So if you feel so inclined to bring him something, I am quite sure he would be appreciative.

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Photo of outdoor7or24
5/5  rDev +6.8%
vibe: 5 | quality: 5 | service: 5 | selection: 5

Must stop while in Paris, I went in September of 2011 and visited 2x. Simon and his staff (one guy from PA) were awesome. My first stop I carried 5 US beers and Simon took his time picking out a selection of beers to trade with me. Very cool!
Second time I went back was to load up for the flight back and was able to get 6 beers back no problem.
Wow, it was awesome, I have been saving some of the beers rationing them, just had a "Cuvee D' Oscar" last night - MUST HAVE!

Tips: Take Simon some of the special craft beers, he has had most regular American Micro's; I know he is looking for some Cigar City Brews.
Oh, My backpack was helpful in carrying the brews.
He is usually busy, so allow some time when visiting him.
Beers are in Euro's, so as other reviewers noted they will be more than you might expect to pay, but how many times are you getting to try these???? Get 'em!
If you want to bring some brews back for me, let me know...

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Photo of weirdo513
5/5  rDev +6.8%

I recently spent a week in Paris and had the wonderful opportunity to visit this shop.

Simon is an amazing asset to any beergeeks who are visiting Paris. His shop, tucked away on a side street near the Centre Pompidou, is beyond fantastic. There is an impressive array of French beer that Simon will be happy to show to you while he enthusiastically explains their flavors and styles.

When you've selected your beers he will also (for no charge) wrap each bottle in bubble wrap for you. I ended up picking up 11 bottles to take home (had to get a new suitcase).

If you do head to Paris, be sure to bring Simon something to try himself, he will happily trade you something for it.

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Photo of rvdoorn
5/5  rDev +6.8%
vibe: 5 | quality: 5 | service: 5 | selection: 5

Also I don’t know what to say about this shop that was not mentioned by other reviewers before. But because a review needs at least 500 characters (useless rule IMO), I will try to make a story around it. I visited Paris several times for work during the last year. Every time when I had time, I went to this shop to buy some local French craft brews. Although average beer quality is debatable, the shop offers a wide selection of these beers. Also, every time I come there, there are other surprising beers available. The shop owner Simon is the nicest guy you will find in a Paris shop. He is very friendly and helpful. He can talk for hours about beer, and will recommend you brews based on what you like. He packs all the beers in bubble plastic and boxes so you can easily take them with you. Also, he is very much willing to trade beers, so if you visit this place, bring some locals with you! Highly recommended!! No place in France will offers you so many local craft brews!

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Photo of Yetiman420
5/5  rDev +6.8%

I could walk into La Cave a Bulles blindfolded, pick five beers, and be extremely pleased that I wound up with five artisinal French beers that I knew nothing about.

This is a testimony to the selective and excellent job Simon does running this store. On my first stop, I went in asking for his benchmark Biere de Garde to which he replied he was presently out but was planning a trip to the small brewer to pick up another case. He personally set me up with other beers based on my interests. I don't know a whole lot about French beers and was floored by all the premium quality stuff on his shelves. Some Belgians "hidden" around the corner by the cashier. All else was artisinal French.

If you're traveling to Paris and plan on visiting, bring Simon a couple of local beers. He's such an awesome guy.

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Photo of surfcaster
5/5  rDev +6.8%
vibe: 5 | quality: 5 | service: 5 | selection: 5

Can't say enough good things about this place.

Owner greeted me in English--saw me coming. Incredible experience. Couple of folks came in after me, went straight for the vintage Cantillion in the cooler and new Cantillion on the shelf. I simply asked to put me on some French stuff and the guy couldn't stop. Walked out with incredible selection of French takes on pales, IPA, farmhouses, low ABV saisons. Too bad for me I had to carry back to my flat or I would have gotten more.

Tip--closes mid afternoon for a couple hours until 4pm. Check website for hours. 15min walk from St. Michel. ASK FOR THE LOCAL STUFF.

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Photo of FoxiBoxi
5/5  rDev +6.8%
vibe: 5 | quality: 5 | service: 5 | selection: 5

I was in Paris on holiday with my now husband, and we were fresh into craft beers. I found this place on BA, and made the walk from our hotel near St. Severin.

Staffed by a single young man, we were worried about the language barrier. He was kind to forgive us our French fumblings and switch to English. He gave us really interesting recommendations that we eagerly took. We purchased around 6 bottles of beer we had never heard of, most of them French. We opened one each time we got to a new city, and were overwhelmingly pleased with what he suggested.

Being used to the hop bombs of American ales, and the sweet and sour Belgians that I love so much, it was nice to have such simple, refined beer on travel. I highly recommend this place, especially since it has such a small town feel to it in the heart of Paris, and is just around the corner from the Modern Art Museum, Centre Pompidou.

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Photo of voyteck
5/5  rDev +6.8%

My visit in La Cave a Bulles was one of the most important points of my short holidays in Paris last weekend. Before the visit, a had thought only about beers, but the purchase turned into an interesting conversation about beers with the owner and great expert, Simon. Firstly, I was looking for Biere de Garde. He told me a lot about this style and recommended me Cuvee des Jonquilles. I must say him Thank You, because the beer was wonderful and, as I have read in internet, this beer is rare and unique. He was very polite and sold me his own Cantillon Iris. I also bought Deus, Brut Des Flanders; Caltillon Rose de Gambrinus , and my girlfriend bought Framboise Boon.
I regret one thing - I had no Polish beers with me. Next time, as soon as possible, I will take some Polish regional beers, baltic porters, honey beers, and - I hope - grodzisz beer, to exchange with Simon. If you are going to La Cave a Bulles, you should take some rare beers to exchange with him.
Prices were resonable and the shop has the best atmosphere among beer shops I know. Visit in La Cave a Bulles is as important for beerlover as visit in La Tour Eiffel or Louvre.

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Photo of dpizzillo
5/5  rDev +6.8%

I was in Paris for work and saw that this store had great reviews, so I decided to check it out. The shopkeeper (perhaps owner), Simon, was extremely helpful and spoke fluent English. He spent quite a bit of time with me helping me with my selection (I ended up buying 20 beers). He individually wrapped the 13 beers that I planned to take back to the US and put them in a box with a nice handle. No bottles were broken upon my return, so he did a great packaging job. This store is definitely worth visiting if you are a beer enthusiast in Paris.

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Photo of WindoraEric
5/5  rDev +6.8%

I sent Simon, the owner, an email, letting him know that I would be visiting on my last night in France, asking for directions. He responded within hours with all the info I asked for, as well as recommendations for bars near the hotel I was staying at. Wow.

So I and my family--wife and 2 boys under the age 6--stopped by prior to dinner on July 17th. As Simon wrapped up with another customer, I perused the walls lined with only a few beers I had heard of. How was I going to be able to limit my purchases to 3 or 4 small bottles?!

Simon finished with his customer and promptly turned his attention to me. Seeing my children, he brought them something to drink, and let them open the jars of hops and grains on the table while we chatted. I brought a can of Surly Furious from my home state for him, reading that he appreciated IPAs, but it became clear that his love of beers extends far beyond IPAs! He gave me a full rundown of the French beer scene and walked through the many different styles new to France--it's been a challenge he explained getting the French to move off of not only wine, but watered-down lagers, a challenge not dissimilair to the US craft beer scene in recent memory. As such, many of the "typical" new French beers, besides styles commonly found in France and Belgium, are flavored with products found locally: honey, chestnuts, grapes, etc. So that's where I turned my attention, picking out a strong dark beer with spices, a honey beer, a muscat beer and a French IPA. He threw in a bottle of blonde for me in return for the Surly.

Simon's hospitality and attention to detail was greatly appreciated. The prices were very reasonable, considering what single bottles go for in the US. They were generally priced according to size of the bottle, with exceptions for rarities and single batches. He sent us on our way with a recommendation for a wonderful restaurant.

If you're in Paris, Caves a Bulles is not to be missed!

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Photo of maximep
5/5  rDev +6.8%
vibe: 5 | quality: 5 | service: 5 | selection: 5

excellent place, Simon is extremely nice and knowledgable.

if you come here be ready to talk and have a great time!

Simon shed some excellent knowledge on Cantillon and otherwise as well as made an perfect recommendation tailor made to my taste!

a world class shop, as good as any you'll visit. the layout is extremely user friendly, simons english is excellent, they have all Cantillons except the rares such as Blaebier, and although they could have more American brews, who wants 'em (American tourist speaking) when you can just have it at home for cheaper? Great selection of Mikkeller, and ESPECIALLY great selection of French beers. Worth a trip here on ANY day.

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Photo of Acephale
5/5  rDev +6.8%
vibe: 5 | quality: 5 | service: 5 | selection: 5

With the lack of French beers here in the USA I was truly excited to visit this store. I new I could trust the reviews here on Beeradvocate.

When I walked in my eyes lit up and I was so excited to finally be there. It was a great atmosphere with a large amount of beer lovers and beer talk in the air. Simon was very kind and his suggestions where very good. You can tell he takes pride in his store and of course beer. Since I was only in Paris for a limited time and I wanted to bring my empty bottles for my collection I was limited to how many I could buy but I was very pleased in the end. Its such a shame that French beer is not so popular in the USA.

I look forward to a return visit.

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Photo of Arminius757
5/5  rDev +6.8%
vibe: 5 | quality: 5 | service: 5 | selection: 5

Found myself in Paris for the week. Wanted to try some of France's best crafts. Found the right place. Huge selection, super friendly and knowledgeable staff. Spoke English, even German, without a problem. Even found a six pack of Westvletern 12! Awesome place. Must see.

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Photo of samiller
5/5  rDev +6.8%

I'm sure glad I saw this store's card on the wall at the Cantillon brewery/museuem or I would have missed it on my visit to Paris (thankfully now it's been added to BA). If you're interested in finding out about under-the-radar French craft beer, this is THE place to go. So many beers I hadn't heard of - it was like I was I was just getting in to craft beer all over again! Simon the friendly owner is very helpful & knowledgable & speaks English quite well. He's very proud of the French craft beer scene and, as someone mentioned already, will be considered one of it's visionaries in 15-20 years.

Some of the beers I bought were a little thin in the mouth - which I'm thinking might be more to the French taste as so many blonde beers seem to be popular there - but it was a great experience to try so many new beers brewed by small brewers. My favorite beer I tried was the Saison Saint Medard - a perfect saison in my opinion. Tell Simon what you like & he'll steer you towards something good.

This place was the perfect antidote to the Belgium withdrawals I was having!

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Photo of TX-Badger
4.97/5  rDev +6.2%
vibe: 4.75 | quality: 5 | service: 5 | selection: 5

A neat little shop in the heart of Paris. The selection is great and the service is even better. This is definitely the place to go for beer in Paris.

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Photo of TurdFurgison
4.94/5  rDev +5.6%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 5 | service: 5 | selection: 5

It's been one year since I've reviewed a place on BA, but I finally hit one noteworthy enough to get me started again. I've tried unsuccessfully to get here many times over the years, my own fault as they do post their open hours. It was well worth the wait though, this is just a wonderful store.

The location is ideal for visitors to the city, just north of the Chatelet Metro stop. Chances are that you'll be strolling Rue de Rivoli at some point in your visit anyway. The shop is small (but what real estate isn't small in Paris, palaces and cathedrals notwithstanding?). Most of the beers are placed on shelves, and understandably the heaviest selection is French beers. So many of them! I didn't know most (all?) of the names. Luckily the owner (Simon) speaks very good English, and he is a true lover of beer. Even better, he has an American BA working in the store (Brandon) who also knows his stuff. They walked me through the choices and I trusted them based on their detailed descriptions of what they liked and disliked in different beers.

There are also 2 small coolers. One is stocked with their vintage/"expensive" beers, and the other cooler is stocked with a variety of large and small bottles for people who want a beer that has been chilled to some extent for take away.

Beyond the French beers there's a good selection of Belgian beers, and also some Nordic and USA selections. I even saw Hopping Frog from OH, so surprised to see this. I didn't travel 9 hours by plane to drink OH beer though!

Overall I can't recommend this store highly enough. I will be back any time I'm in Paris.

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Photo of spdyfire83
4.94/5  rDev +5.6%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 5 | service: 5 | selection: 5

This is a MUST stop for anyone visiting Paris! Simon is wonderfully knowledgeable about beers and everything he has in the store. We had a good chat about beer, travelling, places to visit, and (of course) more about beer. He is a great guy and knows his stuff!

The shop itself is located near Notre Dame in central Paris - easy to find and a quick walk to several Metro stops if you are not staying in the area. Beautiful store-front window with a good feel. Check the hours before you go though as I noticed the shop is closed during the afternoon for a bit.

The selection is excellent and, as mentioned previously, Simon will surely take the time to chat with you about new releases, what you like, and everything in between. I was impressed by the quality of beers at such an affordable price.

I will definitely stop here again and bring Simon some treats from my cellar next time I am in Paris.

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Photo of Jerseyislandbeer
4.93/5  rDev +5.3%
vibe: 5 | quality: 5 | service: 5 | selection: 4.75

A must visit when your in Paris if your into your bottled beers, they have around 250+ beers with a great selection from Paris and France itself, plus a good Belgium selection as well as Norwegian, Swiss, Dutch, Danish, Italian...
The staff are very helpfull and informative, and will wrap your selections for flying.
Needless to say I'll be returning to this fantastic shop!

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Photo of myspoonistoobig
4.88/5  rDev +4.3%
vibe: 4 | quality: 5 | service: 5 | selection: 5

I just happened upon this place by chance since the AirBNB we were staying at was right down the street. We were literally on our way back to the apartment to look up a beer shop to go to.

The first thing that struck me was the selection of American beers. Well-curated, well displayed and the prices seemed quite fair. Next thing that struck me was the impressive Belgian selection, including Cantillon and Drie Fonteinen in quantities that would make any American drool (like the other American in the shop at the time, who was buying as much as he could carry). Since I had just come from Belgium, I was all set on sours. When in France, drink French beer, I would think.

They have an extensive selection of French beers with a smattering of craft Italian as well. Well-laid out, with plenty of glassware as well. Prices throughout the store are set for 330ml bottles, 500ml bottles and 750ml bottles, with limited release bottles priced individually. I picked out a handful of beers and brought them to the counter. The gentleman working asked if I knew what I was picking out which for the most part I did. We talked about my selections and then he made a few suggestions to fill the holes so I could get a true snapshot of French craft beer. Then he asked if I'd be flying with the beers (I would) and if I would like them wrapped in bubble wrap (I did) free of charge!

Really a top notch beer shop with a passionate proprietor and incredible service. A must-go stop for any beer enthusiast in Paris.

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Photo of lalaloveyou
4.86/5  rDev +3.8%
vibe: 5 | quality: 5 | service: 5 | selection: 4.5

This is a great place to get beers from French and Belgian breweries! Simon is awesome, he takes the time to find out what you like and gives really great recommendations for local beers. His English is perfect, so don't hesitate to visit if your French is not good. He is also willing to do trades with you if you bring something interesting. Prices are comparable with US pricing, it was between $10-20 (USD) for a 750ml. It's on the cutest little street by Centre Pompidou, and totally worth going to. Overall, a great experience!

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Photo of ystazi
4.86/5  rDev +3.8%
vibe: 5 | quality: 5 | service: 5 | selection: 4.5

Good selection of French and other European beers. Limited selection but very good quality US beers. Very knowledgeable owner and very helpful. He is happy to talk to you about beers and offers great recommendation. Will definitely go back there again!!

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Photo of mirnsd
4.86/5  rDev +3.8%
vibe: 5 | quality: 5 | service: 5 | selection: 4.5

The best beer store in Paris. Tucked away in a little street this place is a gem. Whilst there are other good beer stores in Paris they don't specialise as much in French craft beer that Simon does.

Simon speaks French, English and I heard him speaking to some Italian customers too. So dont be too embarrassed if the high school French is a tad rusty.

Great selection of beers from all over France and very competitively priced. Also a good, ever changing, selection of hard to find beer from all over the world.

A definate must for any beer lover visiting Paris

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Photo of KevyKev
4.85/5  rDev +3.6%

I can confirm what the other reviewers have said - this is the place to learn about and obtain French craft beers in Paris.

Quality of what was on the shelves was excellent.

Regarding service -- Simon the owner is passionate about French breweries and is an expert on the subject. We had visited a couple of the breweries and met a few of the brewers but it was my impression that he was more than happy to introduce anyone to the French beer scene and find beers to match your taste. He spent a considerable amount of time with us.

Selection in a shop like this is a relative concept - there were a couple of beers from French Flanders that I did not see that I would have liked but the selection of other French artisanal beers was excellent and there was a small but nice selection of quality Belgian beers.

With regard to prices, you can pay nearly EUR 8 for a 50cl bottle of German beer and over EUR 11 for a bottle of 3 Monts at local restaurants. By comparison, this place is a bargain.

As pointed out previously, Simon would likely trade for quality beers, particularly of the hoppy variety.

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Photo of gdkersey
4.85/5  rDev +3.6%

I went to Paris last week, and made a little beer itinerary for myself of bars and this store. No joke, this was the first place I went after dropping bags off at my hotel. The beautiful little store sits down a side alley, tucked away from the more crowded streets like St. Denis. The beers are neatly organized, making it simple for even the non-French speaking customers such as myself to navigate through the selection of bottles.

We were greeted by who I believe is the owner, Simon, asking if we needed any help. I told him how I heard about the store on a beer website, to which he replied, "BeerAdvocate?" Well aware of his popularity among American beer geeks, he was extremely nice and helped me pick out a selection of French craft beers that may suit my tastes. The prices were relatively cheap, especially when compared to going around bars in Paris. I drank some of the beer in the hotel, and brought a few back to the States.

If you are in Paris and would like to bring back some great beer to the States, get over to La Cave à Bulles.

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La Cave à Bulles in Paris, France
100 out of 100 based on 54 ratings.