Kaldi's Coffee House

941 Decatur Street

(Yes, Kaldi's is no more - but I'm keeping this one up because I'm a sentimental fool).

Okay, this one made both lists. Kaldi's is the ultimate Bohemian place for hanging out, smoking, reading and general bumming without any pressure to stop taking up space and get a damn refill already. But the carefree atmosphere cuts both ways, and like all Bohemian joints, the employees are mostly snooty artists types who seem to resent wasting their talent and time languishing over a hot espresso machine when they could be "creating" and thus common courtesy is generally replaced by cold stares and tired grunts. It is clear that the presence of the customer is just barely tolerated. Tips are demanded but not acknowledged. But then again, if the help were more professional, they'd probably have asked my bummin' butt to clear out by now. Kaldi's is really a love to hate it but hate to love it kind of joint. I only wish there were more like it.

Update: Alas, Kaldi's is no more. The rumor is that their 10 year lease ran out and the landlord doubled the rent. A shame - Kaldi's had its little problems but it was, to many, the "living room of the French Quarter" as Jim Smith put it. The building stands empty as of this writing and there is no suitable replacement in sight. What a drag.

On the bright side, there is a Rue De La Course in the French Quarter now! (See Things We Love in New Orleans)


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