Feb. 27 2015 05:23 PM

Downtown spot offers satisfying wines, unfulfilling specials

Photo by Jen Van Tieghem

Downtown's Le Parfait Paris has quickly made itself known for coffee, desserts and decadent pastries. Since opening late last year, it's become a go-to for caffeine addicts and sweet-toothers. And though I'd heard rave reviews, my favorite indulgence seemed untested.

After confirming the spot (555 G St.) had added "wine bar" to its list of services, a friend and I went for a visit; a loyal fan of its morning fare, she was also interested in perusing the wine list. Not surprisingly, it's dominated by French selections and includes reds, whites, rosés and sparkling wines. 

Our trip was in line with Le Parfait's Wine Wednesday special, which offered three glasses for the price of two—a perfect way to sample a few wines together, we thought. Unfortunately, the wine wielder behind the counter informed us that our third glass had to be the same as one of the others we'd ordered. 

Barely hiding our disappointment, we asked if we could at least sip our selections before committing to the third glass, and he obliged. For $15, we walked away with three modest pours—two of a white Bordeaux by Chateau Bonnet and one of a rosé by Listel from the Sable de Carmargue region. We took an outside table with a view of twinkle lights on the trees nearby and a people-watching angle of G Street.

The Bordeaux started out bone-dry with little flavor, but after a few minutes, it opened to reveal apple, pear and melon flavors. The rosé was also dry and light with a hint of strawberry. Though both were refreshing and light, we both preferred the white slightly more.

As our plan to sample a trio of wines didn't pan out on the first round, we decided to share one more glass—the L'Esprit Cotes du Rhone—sticking with our French theme. This dry red was an instant hit with my companion and me. Its nuances held both smoke and tobacco, along with dried cherries and figs. 

The atmosphere at Le Parfait was comfortable and ideal for lounging and chatting. Overall, we were pleased, though we'd have liked something a bit more special from the weekly special. 

Write to jenv@sdcitybeat.com and editor@sdcitybeat.com. Follow her on Twitter at @Jen_VT.


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