September 2, 2012

A NEIGHBORHOOD CAFE

Nothing much is 'happening' in my east side, midtown Manhattan neighborhood—and there's not a lot that's quaint or charming about it—no cobblestones, hidden alleyways, tree lined streets or brownstones... nothing in the way of outdoor cafes, pleasant little shops, or gourmet specialty stores. Mostly we've got nail salons galore, a bank on every corner, way too many Korean markets and 'salad bars,' and mediocre fast food joints. To be fair, a Pain Quotidien opened where you can sit outside (next to a bus stop) and have a cup of coffee, but that's really 'about it.' So I was happy to discover the newly opened Macaron Cafe a few blocks from my apartment. There aren't any outside tables but it's pleasant inside—warmly lit, low key and calm. You can carry on a conversation over coffee without shouting.

The coffee is good, the macaroons are fresh and pretty delicious—better than most I've sampled around town—baked by, I believe, the wife, of the young French couple that own the café (one of the three). I've tried, the lemon, passion fruit, crême brulée, espresso, chocolate, strawberry, pistachio, Nutella, and, still going... My favorite so far is the nicely tart lemon. If you'd like to try your hand at making these delicacies, they've put out a cookbook too.

Bursts of color, Macaron, Midtown East, August 2012.
www.macaroncafe.com

Cappuccino, crème brûlée and my favorite, lemon, macaroons.

Service with a (big) smile.