7th April Coutume Coffee

It’s Easter weekend in France and here, compared with England, this seems to mean buckets of flowers, wine tours and a countless amount of chocolate fish. I’ve spent a good half an hour using the internet to try and understand just WHY ‘poissons de Paques’ are such a big deal and all I’ve managed to discover is that they’re related to April Fool’s Day, which just happens to be near Easter time (in France it’s tradition for children to stick paper fish to people’s backs on 1st April). Other than this there appears to be no particular explanation – not that you really need one to tuck into and enjoy a can full of chocolate sardines.

This Easter Saturday I spent the afternoon in Paris with Edna. We went to visit the Coutume Café coffee shop on the left bank of the Seine – both to sample some of the high-regarded coffee and also to have a bit of lunch and a catch up. The cafe can be found on Rue de Babylone near to Sevres-Babylone metro station and down the road from Le Bon Marche department store. We ordered our lattes and I had scrambled eggs and toast to eat too (œufs brouillés is scrambled egg in French – useful for when you’re out and about for breakfast). The prices were perhaps a little costly for the amount you got, but it was lovely all the same! There’s also the option to buy bags of the various coffee beans they use – all stored in huge containers behind the counter. I’d like to have known a bit more about the coffee whilst I was there though. As lovely as my latte was, the menu seemed fairly basic considering they had all these crazy coffee-brewing contraptions and beans around the shop. I was expecting a bit more choice. Anyhow, it was still a nice place to visit – particularly for brunch.

After we’d eaten we went and had a wander around Le Bon Marche department store and spent a good half an hour looking at all the Easter chocolates and pastries (and also trying to avoid all the people dashing around buying last minute Easter gifts). If the food there wasn’t so expensive I’m sure I could have easily bought a few kgs worth of chocolate chickens! Perhaps not so good for my inflight baggage allowance though… not that I could make them last that long. We also had a lovely walk through the streets of Paris up past the Hotel des Invalides and towards the Eiffel Tower. The spring flowers here are so pretty, it’s easy to see why so many people love the city in the springtime. This is definitely the real reason I came to Paris…

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