5 Best Places to Learn to Make Cocktails in Paris
Over the last decade or so, cocktail culture has taken Paris by storm. A trip to any one of the ‘speakeasies’ dotted around the city, would allow for an education in cocktail culture. From reading through the menus, to watching the passionate bartenders craft their art, you will find yourself in a cocktail dream world!
I know I have been inspired to learn how to make my own cocktails after watching mixologists work their magic in some of Paris’s best cocktail bars. If you have ever dreamed of tossing shakers like the guys at the cocktail bar, then take a look at my guide below on where to learn how to make cocktails in Paris.
1. Learn how to make cocktails at your home or Air BnB
La Boîte à Cocktails is a company that offers classes from the comfort and familiarity of your own home. A great idea for a Bachelor or Bachelorette party, these guys will come to you and teach you how to make all your favourite cocktails. A great option for a team building activity among colleagues, the La Boîte à Cocktails mixologists would gladly join you in the office one day to show you the ropes!
The classes usually last two hours and will introduce you to all the secrets of mixology, including balancing flavours, liquid ratios and more.
If you are unable to accommodate the La Boîte à Cocktails mixology instructors at your home, accommodation or office, they offer classes at a number of bars with which they have partnered.
You can find them hosting cocktail making workshops at La Belleval Hotel. You can book a class through the Belleval Hotel website directly.
PRACTICAL INFORMATION:Hôtel Le Belleval
OPENING HOURS: Monday to Friday
ADDRESS: Hôtel Le Belleval, 16 rue de la Pépinière, 75008 Paris, France
Metro Station: Saint-Augustin, Paris Saint-Lazare
2. Learn how to make cocktails at Paris Cocktail Week
If you are a cocktail lover who happens to find yourself in Paris at the end of January, you should thank your lucky stars. And if you are a cocktail lover considering visiting Paris, you should definitely plan your trip around this time. Taking place from 24 January – 1 February 2020 is the Paris Cocktail Week. Here you will chance to learn how to make cocktails at Paris’s largest cocktail event of the year!
This will be the festival’s fifth year running and mixology classes will be on offer by the plenty. There will be lots of events on the go in addition to cocktail making masterclasses, including cocktail tastings and food pairings. This is sure to be a super fun event and one not to be missed if you are in the city!
Keep an eye on the Paris Cocktail Week website for details about events within the week.
PRACTICAL INFORMATION: paris cocktail week
OPENING HOURS: end of january, dates & times vary annually
ADDRESS: locations vary
3. Learn how to make cocktails at a Parisian Art Nouveau hotel
Worth a visit whether you have booked for a cocktail making class or not, this hotel brims with olden day charm. It is a perfect combination of Parisian Art Nouveau and crisp modernity and offers magnificent rooftop views. The bar is small but packed with top quality liquors.
This is where you will learn the keys of mixology, from the hotel bartender. A master of his craft, he will show you how to perfect a cocktail, all the way from flavour balancing, to presentation techniques.
As the bar is small, classes are only available to a maximum of 6 people. They take place in the evenings and do require reservation beforehand.
PRACTICAL INFORMATION: Hotel Paris Bastille Boutet
OPENING HOURS: By reservation – 5:30pm to 8pm
ADDRESS: Hotel Paris Bastille Boutet – MGallery, 22/24 Rue Faidherbe, 75011 Paris, France
Metro Station: Faidherbe – Chaligny, Charonne, Rue des Boulets
4. Learn how to make cocktails at The Ritz
If you are looking to splurge on a fancy and super unique date, this is where you want to find yourself. Bar Hemingway at the Ritz is an iconic Parisian location in its own right and is definitely worth a visit while in the city. A few days a year, the Ritz offers various classes and workshops. Included in these are the Mixology and Cocktail Stories classes, which fall under the category of ‘Signature Ateliers’. These are held at the famous Bar Hemingway, named after the equally famous novelist.
The mixology class is termed ‘hands-on’, which means the Martini is probably not the only thing that is going to get dirty!
The class takes place over four hours and is usually scheduled on a Saturday afternoon. It is open to ‘informed amateurs’ as well as bartenders with more experience, and is limited to four people per class.
Colin Peter Field, who has won the title of World’s Best Bartender for three years, will be your mixology teacher. He will talk you through some mixology theory as well as offer his own tips and tricks, before you head to the (back of the) bar. Here you will learn how to mix and pour ingredients and use a cocktail shaker like a pro.
You will walk (or stumble) out of the course with the knowledge of how to create your own unique drinks.
The Cocktail Stories class offered at the Ritz is rooted in the philosophy of mixology. Also hosted by Colin Peter Field, this class runs over two hours and is usually scheduled for after the mixology class.
PRACTICAL INFORMATION: BAR HEMINGWAY
OPENING HOURS: SEE L’ÉCOLE RITZ ESCOFFIER WEBSITE FOR DETAILS OF THE NEXT COURSE
ADDRESS: BAR HEMINGWAY AT THE RITZ, 15 PLACE VENDÔME 75001 PARIS
METRO STATION: OPÉRA, PYRAMIDES, MADELEINE
5. Learn how to make cocktails at the European Bartender School
If you are looking for something a bit more serious than a good night out, enrolling at a formal Bartender or Mixology school is a great idea. The European Bartender School offers a wide variety of bartending courses. These range from one day, up to four weeks in length. On these courses you could learn to master up to 65 different cocktails.
The European Bartender School has schools located not just in Paris, but worldwide. They have a great network and will help you to find work through a partner site called Matchstaff, which pairs newly qualified bartenders with epic venues.
They also offer Coffee and Barista courses where you can learn to master the coffee bean.