The 19th is a largely undiscovered arrondissement, hidden well off the tourist-beaten track. Take a stroll through the backstreets of this quiet neighborhood to find quaint little cafés, from perches overlooking the Parc de la Villette and the Buttes Chaumont to beautifully crafted barges on the river. Here are our favorites.
Courtesy of Kaffee Bar 19
Kaffee Bar 19
Coffee Shop, German, Vegetarian
Kaffee Bar 19, Paris
A little further upstream from the more famous Canal St-Martin and overlooking the Bassin de la Villette, you’ll find this wonderful, secret little joint for great coffee and organic cuisine lovers. German owner Aaron has contributed to the changing surrounding area with his coffeeshop, using uniquely flavored beans and making his own different delicious organic soup every day.
Le 104 is definitely one of the 19th’s most interesting cultural and architectural attractions. Not only is this huge space (which used to house Paris’ biggest funeral parlor) fascinating in itself, it’s one of the city’s most diverse and multidisciplinary venues, offering a huge variety of exhibitions and artistic events. Somewhere in the middle of this, look out for Café Caché (the ‘hidden cafe’), where you can sit back and enjoy a delicious brunch whilst being fully immersed in an flowery, tropical setting.
Just opposite the Paname Brewing Company, you’ll find a delightful looking, brightly graffitied old house which has been transformed into a beautiful coffee shop, restaurant, and co-working space. Although people usually go there for a hot drink or a spritz, it also offers a range of affordable, mouth-watering dishes that you can enjoy inside or out sitting at the beautiful garden-terrace overlooking the water.
Le Parc de la Villette is home to all sorts of interesting bars, cafés, and venues. Right next to the brand new Philarmonie de Paris is the Café des Concerts, a hotspot for festival-goers and music students and lovers. It’s an ideal place to stop at after a night out at an exhibition or the Philarmonie, and if you sit outside or just admire the view from the window, you’ll be able to take in the incredible Fontaine aux Lions and La Grande Halle de la Villette.
Halfway down Avenue de Flandre, one of the arrondissement’s busiest avenues, and hidden behind a big flower shop, is le 108 Café, otherwise known as the area’s hottest brunch spot. It’s not only famous for its menu, but also for being an unusual little bookshop packed with books from across the world and magazines of all sorts. Go there on a Sunday to enjoy their incredibly rich brunch and then dive into a captivating book.
The barge that Antipode has taken over used to travel along the canals of Europe, transporting freight from one port the next. But today, it has set anchor in the Bassin de la Villette and lights up the area with its busy deck and fairy lights. This charming floating café is a great place to enjoy a drink with your friends whilst absorbing the gorgeous view of Place Stalingrad in the distance. It also hosts a range of different events including salsa nights, children’s shows, concerts, and food markets.
Kaskad Café is located right opposite the entrance to the gorgeous Parc des Buttes Chaumont. This place is a true institution, where locals gather in groups on weekends to enjoy the famous breakfast and brunch, before taking a stroll through the park to the cascade waterfall from where the café derives its name. Make this your lunch break on a lazy Sunday after a beautiful walk in the Buttes.
One of La Villette’s main attractions is La Grande Halle, which was a large market space back in the day when the park still functioned as an abattoir. This huge space holds all kinds of huge events and fairs, including the very famous Pitchfork Music Festival. Little do people know that it is also home to La Petite Halle, a glass-walled café and restaurant that turns into a club once the sun sets. It’s a great place to relax after ambling through the incredible park. If you’re here on a Friday, you can even catch some hilarious stand-up comedy.