The Smallest Cafe in Paris: Boot Cafe
There are almost as many cafes in Paris as there are people. Ok, that was slightly over exaggerated but you get the point. The cafe culture here is something else but it hasn't always been like that. This trend only just started a year or two ago, but now, wherever you go, you'll see one cafe or another, that you would've come across on a guidebook or most likely, on Instagram.
Conveniently located in the fancy quarter of Le Marais, Boot cafe, also known as Cordonnerie, is one of these Instagram cafes. As you can tell, the shop front is in a photogenic shade of baby blue and the store is not much bigger than a chambre de bonne, one of those tiny studios you find on the top floors in many Parisian buildings.
I've walked past it several times prior to this very visit but due to both its popularity and its size, there was always a queue and I was never bothered enough to actually wait in line. This time though, several of us decided to meet here and we were lucky to have gotten one of the two tables available inside the shop. As you can see, there is also an outdoor seating but it would not have been possible to accommodate four of us without blocking the street.
Before we even stepped into the cafe, the smell of coffee forced its way into our nostrils, with a tinge of sweetness from the freshly baked goods they had on the counter. The menu is not extensive. You have all the things you'd normally expect from a coffee house. An expresso costs 2,50€ and a hot chocolate only 4,50€. You could also grab a decent sized cake for 4€.
My friends all had an espresso each and since I was recently put on a strictly no sugar, no salt diet, I abstained from spending a ridiculous 5€ on a cup of tea. I never get why tea costs so much when enjoyed outside of the comfort of your own house. It barely costs 2€ to buy a box of 20 sachets yet cafes charge 5€ for putting a tea bag in hot water. My friends seemed to enjoy their espressos though, with a load of sweetener. I have never been a coffee person so I will not recommend a place for its coffee. And since I can't have any sugar, I could do nothing but stare longingly at the inviting stacks of chocolate chip cookies lined up in front of the counter.
Having said that, I think this place is quite cool to see. And from what I can tell, people seem to love the coffee here. The couple next to us ordered another two as soon as their first ones were finished, which didn't take very long.
Boot Cafe is a great place to stop by for a coffee if you like. It is, after all, the smallest cafe in Paris. But would I be coming here for my regular caffeine injection? Probably not. It is the sort of place where you just want to tick it off your list, not really one that you'd go regularly, but that's just my personal opinion. For me to return regularly to a place, I'd much prefer somewhere more spacious and chilled out, like Fringe, which is less than a three-minute walk away from Boot Cafe and is a much more comfortable environment to enjoy your food and beverage.
19 Rue du Pont aux Choux, 75003 Paris
01 73 70 14 57
What other Parisian cafes are on your list? Leave them in the comments below, I'd love to check them out!