There’s no doubt - rue Chateau d’eau is one of the latest Parisian neighbourhoods to get the rose-tinted treatment. With Smallville Records, anticafé, Les Résistants and Holybelly around the corner, this stretch of road from Strasbourg Saint Denis down to République is getting trendier by the day.
And since hybrid cafés are all the rage, we couldn’t help but rush to O/HP/E. The name stands for exactly what they do: objets (objects), homemade patisserie, épicerie.
There’s a wave of instant calm upon entering this interiors boutique-cum-coffee shop. Sunlight streams onto the light wood, a woodland garland traces the ceiling above the coffee area. It’s a little oasis.
Deco lovers will be happy as Larry perusing the pastel ceramic teasets, marble chopping boards, manual coffee grinders, wooden utensils. The larder isn’t left out either with preserves from London Jam Factory and Greek company Arodana (kiwi, apple, banana marmalade) or ELY pre-made cocktail mixes and Borderline juices with bottles named Geek, Cougar and Dandy.
After all that browsing (and spending), you can relax in the café area with a Terres de Café latte or espresso or perhaps an organic tea. Don’t go without sampling a sweet treat, which is where they really excel. Inhouse patissier Anne-Sophie’s skillful hands create banana bread, raspberry and matcha cake, peanut cookies - all fresh. Not forgetting the decadent florentine-like biscuit squares called carré graines with chocolate chunks, macadamia nuts and pistachios. Too good.
Half an hour, even two, could go by without your peace being disturbed in this suntrap.
The concept café isn’t going anywhere fast, and O/HP/E is a sunny, tasteful and welcome addition to the club.