Cave Barrique (Nice)

© Justine Nerini

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When Olivier Daniel and Kevin Lalanne open a lair of libations, we’re sure to drink well… Geschikt, Houillon, Jousset, Dumora: a quick glance over at the bar and our hopes are reassured! But the owners of Babel Babel had the good sense not to limit themselves only to grape must, renovating this old theater in Vieux Nice with finely crafted woodwork, Frama furniture, golden neon lighting… and a few barrels placed out front by the entrance, a rougish alternative to the red marble bar. The headliners? Around 30 natural references available every day, which can be uncorked on site for a pretty respectable €5 corkage fee: Hauts de Carco, a Corsican vermentino from Antoine-Marie Arena (€34), Veronnet, a Savoyard gamay from Corentin Houillon (37 €), or Winifred, an Austrian rosé from Gut Oggau (€46). And to soak up all that good stuff, marinated green and Kalamata olives, anchovies doused in olive oil and lemon zest, aioli to spread on sourdough country bread, ash goat’s cheese from Bouyon tossed with pickled Rainier cherries, or porchetta – homemade, thank you very much! // Laëtitia Sayre

THE BULLET-PROOF BOTTLE: Cinquante Nuances de Gris, a rosé made from pinot gris from the Lucy Margaux farm, a winemaker in the Adelaide Hills (€15).

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