What: Café Craft
Where: 24 Rue des Vinaigriers 75010 (10ème arrondissement)
When: Mon-Sat 9am-7pm; Sun 10am-7pm
Métro: Jacques Bonsergent (line 5); République (lines 3, 5, 9, 11)
Price for a café crème: 4E (3.50E takeaway)
Food: Quite a selection
This recent addition to the ever-expanding collection of tasty coffee joints in Paris arrived at around the same time as Ten Belles, on the other side of the Canal Saint Martin. It's also just around the corner from Tuck Shop, another café I've been meaning to investigate. I was happy to see upon arrival that Lomi coffee beans were being used. Add to this the hipster vibe it gave off and un vrai café was guaranteed.
At the back of the café there were about fifteen or so well-dressed bobos, all probably electronically scribbling their latest creative endeavours into their shiny new MacBooks. Cynicism aside though, it makes for a great work environment, with wifi on offer and myriad power points on the long communal table. It is also in a quiet street, tucked away nicely from the hustle and bustle of République and rue du Faubourg du Temple. Everything is brand new and squeaky clean, there is a lot of space to stretch your legs and they even have a little bench outside for those with café-clope needs.
It is definitely a nice area to check out once you've satisfied your caffeine craving. A good route is to walk from la rue du Faubourg du Temple, all the way up the Canal, then keep going up to Jaurès and Stalingrad, at which point you can choose to continue on to the Canal de l'Ourcq, or head into le Parc des Buttes Chaumont, Paris' biggest park. If you go to the Canal in summer you can buy a couple of beers in a local épicerie and sit down by the water until the sun sets, or until the local rangers tell you that you can't drink in the area after 9pm, whichever comes first.
Back to the matter at hand. Indeed I was served, as I had hoped, a proper cup of coffee in a proper coffee cup (say that ten times faster). My friend ordered a cup of tea, which came in one of those elaborate Bodum tea apparatuses. She said it tasted nice. There seemed to be a variety of food on offer, including pasta salad served in a hiptastic jar and some pastries.
When I asked Thomas, the owner over at Ten Belles, if it'd been an issue that this other, similar café had opened around the same time at such close proximity, he said no. Apparently Augustin, the owner of Craft, had aimed to open a place that provided a comfortable work environment for people who really wanted to have some good coffee while tap-tapping away on their keyboards – a coffice, a term I heard coined in some article. On the contrary, as previously mentioned, Ten Belles is really for people who want good coffee, and who aren't going to hang around all day taking up space with their empty cups while others wait outside in the cold.
As for Augustin, he said he'd discovered good coffee while living in New York. When he finished his studies in business he decided to combine his skills with his passion and open up a café. So far so good.
Either way, I was very happy with what I got.
View Good coffee in Paris in a larger map