Five Can’t Miss Cafes in Paris
While wandering the streets of Paris, there seems to be an unlimited number of idyllic cafes that it can be nearly impossible to decipher which offers the best tasse du café in the city. Determining factors, such as the heavenly flakiness of a fresh croissant or the mellow rhythms of a live jazz trio playing in the background are all quintessential to the making of a classic Parisian café experience. To save you hours of listless wandering, below are five incredible cafes that will leave you longing to return.
For those looking for a quaint respite in Montmartre, be sure to stop by Le Coquelicot des Abbesses. Le Coquelicot des Abbesses is a classic Parisian café that offers a variety of delectable items, from the irresistibly simple pain au chocolat to main menu items such as quiche Lorraine and crepes. The laidback atmosphere makes this café an ideal place to meet up with friends for a weekend brunch or for a quick treat before a day of exploration.
Originally a coal shop, Café Charbon has embraced its industrial past in its hybrid design that beckons back to 19th century France. The intimate décor and authentic vibe attracts a lively bohemian crowd throughout the day and into the night. Wednesdays through Saturdays the café transforms into a cozy nightclub as the lights are dimmed and DJ’s spin tracks for an easygoing dance scene. After dinner at Café Charbon, be sure to check out their sister bar, Nouveau Casino, next door for fantastic live electronic and experimental music.
Both sophisticated and vintage, Le Bar du Marché is a prime café to linger and people watch for an entire afternoon. This Parisian hotspot attracts a diverse clientele representative of the “bobo” sensation, a mixture of bohemian and bourgeoisie, through its old-city atmosphere and its great location. The simple, yet elegant, bistro fare and antique jazz posters beckon back to the times of the Golden Age, making this café a must for anyone in search of the iconic Parisian café.
La Palette provides visitors with a subtle and charming café experience with its rustic décor and menu comprised of classic French fare. Since its opening in 1905, La Palette has drawn a variety of clientele, ranging from Picasso to Harrison Ford, and continues to be popular with students from the prestigious Ecole des Beaux-Arts. Although a majority of the customers are students, the crowd diversifies in the evening when young professionals venture in for an evening of cocktails and delectable cuisine. The year-round terrace also makes this café the perfect spot for warm summer evenings, where you can while away the hours with a great bottle of wine and friends.
Visiting the upscale Café Flore has become a pilgrimage for those in the know of its bohemian history. Serving as a creative hub for French existentialists such as Jean Paul Sartre and Simone de Beauvoir, Café Flore is the perfect place to savor exquisite hot chocolate while soaking in its intellectual heritage. Although relatively pricey compared to most cafes, Café Flore provides customers with an unparalleled experience through its premium location and high quality offerings. Be sure to sit on the conservatory-like patio for an elegant experience sampling aperitifs and people watching rain or shine.
Photo credit: Anirudh Koul