In the last 15 years, natural wine bars have gone from French fringe to global shorthand for a certain philosophy and style. Offering thrilling bottles, food and design, they’re the new way to unlock a city. Here are some of the world’s best.Less
Around the corner from the award-winning restaurant Septime in Paris is its popular sibling, a cozy, always-packed little room where an all-star lineup of bottles can be enjoyed with exquisite bites, be it grilled bread with smoked butter and black truffle, or slices of Spanish Wagyu.
Camille Fourmont’s endlessly charming sliver of a spot in Paris has been drawing regulars for over a decade — not just for her charm (and her famous white beans), but also for the adventurous bottles she stocks. Check Instagram for pop-up events with global chefs — quite a feat considering there’s no kitchen!
Arguably the one that started it all, this Belleville staple in Paris holds legendary status both in the natural wine world and among the city’s best chefs. Although there are a few seats at the bar for drinkers, it would be a tragedy not to book ahead for lunch or dinner so you can experience Raquel Carena’s earthy, soul-satisfying food before she retires.
A natural wine bar in Paris for those who’d prefer a more classic setting, this vintage café near the Pantheon is of the zinc-tables-on-the-sidewalk variety, and also happens to have excellent food.
An unpretentious outpost of natural wine and a menu that runs toward hearty, updated classics, this lovely husband-and-wife-run spot in Bordeaux has 350 natural selections on offer — because it can’t be all Left Bank first growths all the time. Better yet, they’re open Monday (as well as for lunch).
Opened in Copenhagen by the importer who helped kick off the city’s considerable natural wine scene, this cozy, subterranean spot on Nyhavn Harbor has an on-point biodynamic list, as well as small dishes of the minimalist Danish variety. In summer, it turns into a harbor-side party, with BBQ nights filling the picnic tables.
It’s worth the bike ride beyond Noma in Copenhagen to discover this waterside seafood and vegetarian all-day-café-cum wine bar. In the summer, people swim between glasses. In winter, the sauna is its own reward (book ahead) — as is a dinner reservation for one of the restaurant’s 16 seats.
This cool, living-room-like space in Copenhagen serves as both boutique and wine bar. Owner Solfinn is beloved by many of the city’s chefs, who you might find here on their day off. In COVID times, make sure they’re serving when you plan to go — or take advantage of their bike delivery service.
This transportive, canalside bar in Copenhagen is on the Top-5 list of many of the natural wine world’s globetrotters. Not only is the cellar worthy of a flight, the all-Prouvé décor in this 19th-century storefront is as chic as it gets. On Mondays, guest chefs from around the world prepare a one-pot staff meal available to all.
Nerding out is the name of the game at this sweet and casual (and award-winning) Malmo wine and cheese bar and boutique. They don’t take table reservations, but you’ll want to park yourself for awhile in order to pair your way through the day’s selection, segueing into oysters and a plate of spit-roasted pork and veggies. (Something about watching those cabbages spin is hypnotic…)