Two years ago, Oliver Strand lamented the lame-ass coffee scene in Paris. For a city so known for its cafés, it was truly dreadful:
Maybe it’s because Paris cafes do all the little things wrong: old beans, over-roasted beans, second-rate machines. Coffee is ground in batches, not to order. Ask for a café crème or noisette and out comes a box of U.H.T. milk, a shelf-stable dairy product.
That sounds nasty. But Strand doesn’t give up, and he recently returned from Paris with better news:
It happened. This year, three cafes opened that treat coffee as if it’s a part of the world of gastronomy, a drink to be crafted and savored, rather than a commodity, sold as if it’s fuel.
Three excellent-sounding cafés. Next time I visit Paris, I will have to try them (the one in the First Arrondissement sounds particularly great).
On a related note, The Wirecutter has assembled a collection of the best gear for making coffee. They’ve cut through the crap, and I generally agree with their choices. I have one of the Clever Coffee brewers and it brews a good cup, but I still prefer espresso over brewed coffee. A double shot of 49th Parallel’s Epic Espresso paired with about five ounces of hot water and about two teaspoons of 18% cream is just about perfect.