When you ride your bike for 25 minutes in the cold to get to a place on the other side of the town (while the options you have within a kilometer are remarkable) you know it is worth it.
Have you ever felt warm and protected in one of the cafes in the city you live?
Οr maybe in a neighborhood you accidentally visited at one of your travels?
Have you felt, opening a plush-curtained entrance door, the joy of discovering heaven where you can read your book, sip your coffee or enjoy a dessert when at the same time a war could be happening outside?
Opening the doors of Cafe Lang for the first time, on the last Saturday afternoon of January 2020, I had felt everything I just mentioned to you.
Back in that time, while the war had begun (we didn’t know the extent of it yet), I discovered one of the places that embraced me hospitably in my remaining years of living in Zurich.
The first song I listened in Cafe Lang was “young and foolish” by Bill Evans & Tony Bennett.
People were singing over delicious omelets and hot chocolate drinks.
Outside it was snowing lightly.
Warmth, deliciousness, style.
Lovely Swiss old chairs and small striped sofas. Lamps with an excellent design give the place something of a mid-war atmosphere and most importantly: fast and polite service that provides the customers with great coffee.
In the kitchen the chefs battle with the fires and fall over each other to catch up on orders.
The staff is dressed perfectly.
Some places offer the ultimate privacy. A couple of girls are kissing endlessly on the small sofa near the window and the snow outside is falling heavier.
A group of Swiss ladies and gentlemen are having their drinks and are laughing loudly and innocently.
They have no idea what follows in the coming months. They’re happy. Their friendship lasts for years.
Espressos land on the most fabulous old bar in the city.
Some croissants are winging their way over our heads.
Someone in the background is celebrating his birthday.
Birthday cake and wishes.
I still remember the voices of Tammi Terrell & Marvin Gaye singing my favorite “Ain’t no mountain high enough”
Of course .. we are in Switzerland !!
At the outdoor patio with the mustard 50’s vintage chairs, some people have started snowball fights.
The friends who took me there thought I would love the place, and they were absolutely right.
I’ve been there countless times since then.
I always find a place there to work on my laptop, meet a good friend for brunch or drink my delicious coffee without doing anything else at all.
(visiting the toilets is an experience of another era)
Those of you who are often in a romantic mood and are “fast-paced deniers” and lovers of Viennese cafes take a stroll by Cafe Lang.
(While writing this article and editing the photos the cafe announced will reopen the doors under new management. After a hiatus of a few days, it is open again)