The French culture of the apéritif is sacred, but in Paris it has become almost a noisy celebration of the happy hour. A successful apéritif should be a relaxed affair, a leisurely drink with friends in cool, comfortable surroundings, preferably without a thumping techno beat in the background. La Caravane – which is now firmly installed in the district – ticks all of these boxes.
The bar looks almost half-finished, giving you the impression that you have just walked into a second hand furniture shop. It’s a joyous mixture of colours, styles and textures, with even one chair that seems to have come straight from the set of Emmanuelle! Like the light spilling in through the large street-facing windows, the character of the bar changes from hour to hour.
I often squat in one of the scruffy chairs at the entrance on Friday evenings for the apéritif, but later tables are laid for people arriving to eat the tasty and reasonable Franco-Asian themed food. When the sun sets, the temperature rises as cocktails are mixed and regular guest DJs begin spinning discs to another kind of customer. It truly is a destination with something for everybody.