After waiting a decade, a version of that cocktail party finally happened when a group of like-minded armchair intellectuals and I stumbled into Carroll Street Cafe last Saturday night for dinner, drinks and discourse.
Although the cafe has the same kind of Left Bank vibe as its Diem siblings, Cabbagetown adds something to the ambience that Midtown Promenade can't touch. Perhaps because the place was once occupied by the late artist Panorama Ray, the charmed space elicits a cultured sensibility. The art on the walls, the soft candlelight and the fluffy sofas conspire to make Carroll Street Cafe a throwback to a European salon in the middle of a media age, in the middle of a media town.
In lieu of the turn-'em-and-burn-'em service philosophy, the wait staff tolerates campers. In fact, a member of our cotillion that evening said he hogged a table for the time it took to edit an entire book and ordered only a cup of coffee.
Short of accessorizing with an ascot and cramming a Marlboro Light in a cigarette holder, there are very few affectations quasi-intellectual people can exhibit that show the world at large how civilized yet dangerously under-informed they really are. There are even fewer actual hangouts that would encourage this kind of decorum, and that serve such good cosmopolitans.
Which is what makes Carroll Street Cafe so necessary. Grab a coveted table, and pretend you are an ex-patriot. Sip the closest thing the bar stocks to absinthe. Wear a scarf and look bored and sophisticated as you use compound modifiers like "socio-economic." The best part is your words won't fall near Buckhead gadabouts or L5P hipsters. It doesn't matter that you didn't understand Foucault's Pendulum because you can hang out at a place like Carroll Street Cafe and pretend you did.
The Carroll Street Cafe, 208 Carroll St., Cabbagetown. 404-577-2700. Wine, beer, liquor and coffee ($3.50-$6). Food served until 11 p.m.
I'll second the comment on the gnudi. It was outstanding. Love the wine list, too…
Hey Bliss, you provide the prices for everything but the ramen.
Chateau de Saigon has a 10 page menu.
Andrew is my cousin & I am so happy for him & proud of him…
He is a Jerk off