Sunday, January 30, 2011

Cafe noir ou cafe au lait?

Some things never change. New Orleanians may like their chickory coffee with milk or straight up, but they gotta have their cafe. On a day like today, when the cool fog lingers, nothing seems more welcome than a hot cup of joe.

Rose Nicaud, a slave in the early 1800s, bought her freedom selling coffee to French Market workers, vendors and shoppers from a push cart on Sunday mornings.
Rose Nicaud, early coffee vendor

Legend has it that one customer said of her fresh brew:

Her coffee is like the benediction that follows after prayer.

For more than 100 years, women of color - known as les vendeuses - emulated Nicaud, selling coffee, pralines and calas in the streets of the French Quarter.

On the corner of Frenchman and Royal Streets, you can enjoy coffee,  pastries, breakfast and sandwiches almost all day long in a cafe named in her honor. 

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