I had one thing that I really wanted to do in Paris, and I've wanted to do for a long time. That was to just spend some time in a Parisian cafe, drinking coffee and watching people. Simple. It was a quick and exhausting trip, so I didn't have as much time to lounge about as I'd like to but it was a fulfilling adventure nonetheless. Lost and dismayed by the tourist quarters when I arrived outside of the Notre Dame metro station, I messaged Saba (I can use whatsapp internationally but don't have data) for some suggestions and he sent me the name of a coffee roaster nearby. I set out on foot to find it, having no idea what to expect. It was a pleasant surprise when I stepped inside of @lacafeotheque what a rich, vibrant place with a cozy warmth that had a sense of life many specialty coffee shops today have lost in their minimalism. This was beyond my dreams. The moment I walked in the door I was greeted to my left by the aroma of freshly roasted beans cooling in the tray of a drum roaster, and in the back room a large group was standing around a table involved in what appeared to be a very serious cupping session (a method tasting and evaluating different coffees). I explored further and to my delight saw that the cafe continued into several rooms, each with it's own unique feeling. I sat down at a table, poured myself a glass of water and considered the espresso menu--drinks served in their original proportions without being amerasized (america supersized). After enjoying an absolutely exquisite macciatto, I ventured into the back training room where @fredpoirier29 struck up a conversation and shared some of the history of the cafe with me, and how it had all started in that single room. On my way out I didn't miss the opportunity to pick up a few bags of beans for later. Next time you're in Paris and want a good cup of coffee and a cultural experience that isn't overpriced and targeted at us naiive foreigners, I'd definitely recommend stopping by here for an espresso.

Addis Ababa, Tel Aviv, Warsaw, Johannesburg, Victoria, Los Angeles, Paris, and Vancouver

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