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Cafe du Monde

Who knew beignets and chicory cafe au lait could be so addictive. I couldn't get enough of those fried squares of dough–we went twice in one day.

What confuses me is how cans of Cafe du Monde coffee made it into Hong Kong Supermarket in Sunset Park. I noticed more than a few Asian waiters at the cafe. What if there's a covert smuggling operation going on? Who cares as long as I benefit. Now, if they'd only find a way to sneak warm, sugar-covered beignets into my neighborhood too. (2/23/02)

New Orleans is odd in that many (though certainly not all) tourist heavy haunts still offer good food. It's pretty rare in NYC to find a place that pleases visitors as well residents. Caf du Monde is crowded, potentially confusing (people seem to have a hard time figuring out if youre supposed to just take a table or wait to be seated, and then whether or not someone is supposed to come out and take your order) and youre in dangerously close proximity to overzealous street performers. But its all good. At least the beignets are. I try not to get too unnerved by all the women in scrunchies and fitted denim shorts, and men in polos and their pleated khaki shorts.

  I'm trying to figure out the Vietnamese/Caf du Monde connection. In NYC, youll frequently see cans of the stuff in Vietnamese restaurants, often integrated into make shift shrines. Almost all the wait staff at Caf du Monde are Vietnamese, as well. I could understand a Japanese fondness since they have franchises in Japan. But Vietnam? Is it just some odd hold over Francophila, or is there something deeper at work? (7/13/04)

Cafedu Monde * 1039 Decatur St., New Orleans,LA

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