La Ristrettos, Singapore

A green getaway in the middle of the concrete jungle

在星星國辦簽證和等簽證的期間,

除了約見了一些久違的老朋友,

參觀River Safari和南大校園外,還“順道”拜訪了一些咖啡館。

短短幾天里安排了不少節目和行程。

其中星期三的行程是要到River Safari去逛逛,

不過在之前總要得吃早餐吧?

看了看咖啡館名單,想去的不是太遠就不順路,

於是馬少再上網查了查,發現在距離我們酒店不遠處,

還真的有家咖啡館,而且是在一個我們意想不到的地方,

那就是Novena Medical Centre的八樓。

(誰會想到醫療中心找、泡咖啡館啊?)

來到醫療中心,發現這裡還蠻高級的,

連咖啡館裡頭的人們都衣著光鮮,一副專業人士模樣,

反觀我們兩個穿著短褲T恤,頭上頂著一頂帽子,

怎麼看都有點格格不入。

還好這裡設有戶外的位子;

也許大家嫌熱吧,外頭的人潮不多。

其實這戶外的環境挺不錯的;

大片竹子,四周綠油油的植物,加上藤木桌椅,

給人一種悠閒自在的感覺,

正好讓我無拘無束的拍個過癮。

這的咖啡順滑可口,算是中規中矩的,

反而看起來一般的香蕉鬆餅和蟹肉餅,則出乎意料的好吃。

加上外頭的環境清幽,算是一個意外的發現。

Singapore is a coffee and café haven. We know this yet we despair sometimes of finding a spot that is not overrun by crowds on the island. Some place other than the run-of-the-mill hipster café (complete with industrial chic décor and bearded tattooed baristas) would be most welcome.

Imagine our surprise when we managed to uncover a secret sanctuary… hidden in a hospital of all places! Make that the eighth floor of the Novena Medical Centre, a brisk walk from the Novena MRT station. Who knew?

The café itself is fairly functional: exposed brick walls, communal table, the crackle of the espresso machine and the hiss of the steam wand. It’s the space outside (yet inside; inside the medical centre, that is) that astounds. Lush greenery, from tropical plants to tall stalks of bamboo , wooden walkways and rattan furniture.

We sip on our coffee and juice here; we take our time over bites of crab cakes and pancakes (the former arrive with an English muffin, avocado, lemon aioli and a fried egg on top; the latter adorned with banana, scrambled eggs, bacon and salted caramel sauce).

Ah, serenity…


La Ristrettos
#08-37 Novena Medical Centre, 10 Sinaran Drive, Singapore 307506
Open Mon-Fri 8am-6pm; Sat 8am-2pm; Sun closed
Tel: +65-63977165
Website: https://www.facebook.com/LaRistrettos

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La Caféothèque, Paris

Enjoy your cuppa in a "jungle" in the middle of the French capital!

在感歎巴黎好咖啡難求下,前任的瓜地馬拉駐法大使Gloria Montenegro;

於七年前開了這麼一家叫La Caféothèque的咖啡館。

咖啡館位於巴黎第四區;前方就是塞納河;距離巴黎國際藝術城不遠。

除了提供來自不同產地的豆子并進行自家烘焙外,

這裡還有一系列的課程,算是巴黎精品咖啡業的先鋒之一。

咖啡館裡頭可以劃分為幾個小區域。

稍微暗一些的擺放了鋼琴、吉他還有一些小孩的玩具,

在那還有著一個個的小抽屜,收藏了來自世界各地的豆子樣本。

而中間的是舒適的休閒區,

你可以在那邊看看報章、雜誌邊享用咖啡,悠閒地度過一天的時光。

最裡頭靠近街口轉角的是叢林區。

循環木製成的桌椅,斑駁的色塊充滿歲月的痕跡;

加上牆上那綠意盎然的植物,而我們最喜歡的地方。

伴隨咖啡一起送來的,還有一小塊的巧克力。

喝了一口咖啡,咬一下手中的巧克力;

這樣配搭還挺新穎有趣的。

不同的豆子,風格各異的小房間;

在這裡總能找到一杯對味的咖啡,和自己喜歡的小天地,

難怪在咖啡館林立的巴黎,這裡還是許多咖啡迷們的心頭好。

Located next to La Cité Internationale des Arts, an artists residence in the 4th arrondissement, La Caféothèque is considered a pioneer of specialty coffee scene in Paris. Here you may enjoy some of the best brews in the French capital with picturesque views of the Seine.

This café is a labour of love by Gloria Montenegro, a former Ambassador of Guatemala. Lamenting the lack of good coffee in her adopted city, she started her own café and roastery, and ultimately started her own movement.

Today, La Caféothèque offers coffee from over 20 different countries, all of them single estates (no blends) and all roasted in-house by experienced roasters. This is sort of a Parisian coffee mecca where enthusiasts come to attend intensive industry courses while more casual coffee lovers are sipping their brews innocently in the outer salons.

And what rooms! You may consider La Caféothèque as an intimate network of intertwined salons, each with its own unique personality. The slightly dark backroom is a cave – a trunk in one corner filled with children’s toys, a piano in another. Rows of drawers offer samples of green coffee beans from around the globe.

There is a cosy lounge where pages of paperbacks are turned slowly, almost like a private library. The bar is where the action is; baristas finetuning their craft in brewing and pulling shots.

The jungle room is a city-bound sanctuary that recalls the rainforests of her original country. We sit here and enjoy the natural sunlight on a chilly spring morning. The furniture is made from rescued wood, with old paint chipping off artfully. Our coffees arrive accompanied by little pieces of dark chocolate. I bite into my pain au chocolat and it’s delicious, just like this café, this experience.


La Caféothèque de Paris
52 Rue de l’Hôtel de ville, 75004 Paris, France
Open daily 9:30am-7:30pm
Tel: +33-1-53018384
Website: http://www.lacafeotheque.com/

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