The waitress laughed when we asked only one order of beignets. “You can always order more!”
Cafe Du Monde is one of the must-stops in New Orleans, and tour guides must be one of the few books people take seriously because the place was packed at 10 p.m. on a Wednesday night.
Servers swarm around the covered patio. It’s perfectly art directed. The uniforms are paper hats, white shirts and bow ties, and black pants. Cups and plates are plain, sturdy, all function over form. Everything is just scuffed up enough not to feel like an homage, too bustling to be specimen in amber.
I am weirded out when I’m doing things like this. Stuff lots of other people do. Things that are supposed to be cultural, tied to a place. I’m am suspicious the authenticity of anything labeled as authentic, even though I crave the real, just like everyone else.
The food and drinks arrive. With a bite and a sip, I begin to understand. This place a tourist trap as well as a civic treasure. Cafe Au Lait and beignets aren’t coffee and donuts. I finally feel as if I’ve arrived somewhere and I can’t wait to tell everyone.
Makes me want to be there.