November 14, 2019

Café De Flore

A: 172 Boulevard Saint-Germain, 6th arrondissement, Paris, France.

Ph: +33 (0)1 45 48 55 26

Café De Flore

Café de Flore

On the left bank of the River Sienne, in the 6th arrondissement (‘6th district’) of Paris, you will find one of the landmark cafes in Paris, Café de Flore. Centrally located, it was once the stomping ground for students, bohemian artists and intellectuals such as Picasso, Jean-Paul Sartre and Simone de Beauvoir. Although the area is now less frequented by artists and what was known as the ‘French Intelligentsia’ (as it has morphed into one of Paris’ more affluent area) it is, nonetheless, a great spot to ‘Sit Sip and Savour’.

The Historic Café De Flore

The Historic Café de Flore

I frequented Café de Flore late one morning with a colleague. Its scattered patrons consisted of a mix of tourist (like myself) and locals. We sat next to a middle aged husband and wife having a late breakfast and who shared a newspaper. The woman gave the odd leered at us as we arrived with a look that simply said, “Baw, tourists!”. That said, this was my only much heard about (nay, warned about) French snobbery I encountered in all my Parisian stay.

Espresso at Café De Flore

Espresso at Café De Flore

My colleague and I ordered a ‘Café Expresso Spécial Flore’ (an Espresso coffee), a hot chocolate (‘Chocolate Chaud’), a tarte fraises and an éclair café for our morning treat. The Espresso coffee was made with made with Cafés Richard coffee which is a popular brand and prevalent in Parisian cafés. Cafés Richard is the coffee roasting arm of very established French business, ‘Maison Richard’. This Espresso was served at a warm temperature with a good amount of crème. This coffee was a good everyday, modest coffee, well suited to mainstream generic coffee drinkers (although an advanced palate may find it too pedestrian).

Superb Hot Chocolate

Superb Hot Chocolate

Very familiar with Paris, my colleague insisted we order the hot chocolate. Boy, was that a great decision! This thick, rich, creamy real chocolate tasting beverage was so self-indulgent it bordered on debauchery! A must have, especially if you are travelling in winter, it’ll surely warm you up.

A Tarte Fraises

A Tarte Fraises

When it comes to sweets, it is rare that you will find a mere ordinary or unexceptional pastry in Paris. Indeed, the locals would deem it shameful. Café de Flore did not disappoint. The tarte fraises is a classic French strawberry shortcrust based tart filled with crème pâtissière and topped with glazed fresh strawberries (this one also had a sprinkle of crushed pistachio nuts on top). The crème pâtissière was thick and treacly in texture; it was so deliciously fresh I could really taste the vanilla bean seeds and ‘egginess’ in it.

The delicious éclair

The delicious éclair

As for the éclair, you cannot possibly be in Paris and not indulge in this delightful and traditional sweet. French for ‘lightning’, the éclair is rumoured to have be so named due to the glistening glaze it adorns on top. Made with choux pastry, filled with fresh cream and topped with confectionary icing (this one had vanilla bean icing), this éclair from the boutique Parisian patisserie Hugo & Victor was a delight for all of the senses with its fresh cream and vanilla bean scent. As for the crunch of the icing and through the delicate pastry followed by the cream explodes into your mouth (a true éclair will have the cream injected into it, not slit into two halves and then separated with the cream)…cue drool.  I wish I had one now to relive this joyous moment.

As we sat facing the outside world and watched passers-by, I swear I felt Piccaso’s ghost sitting, watching, observing and contemplating life in the seat next to me…

Mesdames and Monsieurs, Café de Flore, with its largely unchanged interior decor, is an absolute must do in Paris. The Espresso coffee was ok to good; the hot chocolate divine; the sweets delicious. However, its location, its history, its ambience and professional service are unequalable: An international favourite place to ‘Sit Sip and Savour‘.

Café De Flore, reviewed by Admin on 2013-09-29T21:35:06+00:00 rating 3.3 out of 3

Rating
3.3/3


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