My first experience of the famous Parisian cafe Les Deux Magots was in the late 90's. An expat in Paris, imagining the faces of the literati and intellectual elite which once occupied its tables, I practiced my halting French with impatient waiters. Clutching a London Times, nervously hoping to get through my order for a “chocolat chaud”, I observed the comings and goings of Parisian cafe society. Over time and many visits later, the London Times turned into a Le Figaro or Le Monde (as recommended by my beloved teacher Patricia), soaking up snatches of conversation at nearby tables and the rush of orders repeated by waiters to the cashier.
P.S. Although we love that American behemoth of a chain that will remain unmentioned, we very much enjoy a beautiful ambiance and warm environment where conversation with friends, quiet work and contemplation can take place. See the beautiful spots in this collage below:
1. Cafe de Flore, Paris (6th arrondisement)
2. Caffe Florian, Venice (Piazza San Marco)
3. Revival Market, Houston, TX
4. Le Pain Quotidien, Spain
5. Cornelia & Co. Barcelona.
6. The Coffee Academics, Hong Kong
7. Laconda Verde, (Greenwich St) New York City
8. Tom Aikens, Chelsea, London.
Reflection by Yanti Amos
Imagery compiled by Wati Grossman
Paris Coffee Cup image by Marina Shakleina