How to Find Good Coffee in Paris

6 March 2015

Last year I shared with you WHERE you can find specialty coffee in Paris (a post that is regularly updated). Now, I want to share HOW to find the best in a market that is rapidly maturing. The below is the unedited version of a coffee story I wrote for the NYT T Magazine this week, with loads of additional thoughts from the coffee movement’s experts.  *** The coffee tune in Paris has changed. In the last two years, coffee has evolved from much-maligned to much-adored by a burgeoning set of specialty coffee aficionados, celebrated as much for the newfound awareness the third wave movement inspired as for the talents pioneering it. With new openings every few months, the market is rapidly maturing. But with greater choice comes a greater challenge for the coffee lover. Given the growing democratization of artisanal coffee, particularly in Paris, almost anyone with business acumen and an ability to ape the coffee shop pre-requisites – colorful Inker ceramic mugs, La Marzocco machinery, minimalist, distressed wood interiors, artisanal cakes and tattooed baristas – can presumably open and run a shop. With those characteristics firmly in place, the assumption among many is that the product must be quality. Lest […]…

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Télescope Café

23 April 2012

As if anyone needed another reason to spend time in the neighborhood surrounding the Palais Royal and its gardens, my favorite new coffee shop is mere blocks away. At Télescope, Nicolas Clerc (photographer-barista) and David Flynn (expert barista formerly of Le Bal) peddle the kind of exceptional coffee that makes bean connoisseurs everywhere reconsider Paris as a suitable stomping ground to fuel their obsession. Of course it helps that these two apt roasters have equipped their earthy, rue Villedo café with first-rate machines. They are the first in the city to use the Über Boiler from Irish brand Marco which precisely regulates the quantity of water and temperature necessary to produce a consistently perfect, flavor-locked brew or infusion. My first visit was two days after they opened for business, right at 8:30am. I was so impressed by the machinery and their poised expertise that I immediately felt compelled to imbibe myself with what would turn out to be an inordinate amount of coffee. I began with the sumptuously rich crème and a toasted Poujauran tartine topped with jam for a breakfast so sublimely simple and delicious I mentally scheduled my next visit on the spot. Then just as I looked […]…

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