Cellar

Sémélé

Cave Sémélé (Paris)

© Sémélé

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Highlighting female winemakers in order to fight sexist stereotypes was the idea behind Mathieu Levy’s new wine shop. He used to work as an engineer before founding this naturophile haven near the Voltaire metro station. But before opening this shop with minimalist decor (tomette tile floors, unfinished stone walls, blonde wood), this self-taught wine expert traveled around France for two years, exploring different vineyards and wine fairs. Now he’s got a more than ample yet subtle selection of wines, featuring both the classics (Muriel Giudicelli in Corsica, Claire Naudin in Burgundy, Christine Vernay and Emma Amsellem in Condrieu…), and lesser-known bottles (Lucie Fourel and Nancy Cellier from the Rhone estate Les 4 Vents, Laurence Alias and Pascale Choime from Les Closerie des Moussis in Bordeaux), plus some very welcome low prices – like this Muscadet-sur-Lies from the Domaine des la Pépière (€9.50) or this Gamay from the (very) promising Elisa Guérin (€13.50). To go all that, you can also dive into Pinard, a guide to living wines, and surf-and-turf terrines from the Île de Groix (€5-6). One last thing: Mathieu’s father happily uncorks bottles on Saturday afternoons… but he can also whip up a tasting session upon reservation. Semele, Dionysus’s mother, would definitely approve! // Kelly Slatée 

The bullet-proof bottle: A pet’ nat’ rosé from Anne-Laure Sicard (€19), a winemaker from Le Mas Lasta, made with Grenache cultivated at an altitude in Hérault backcountry.

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