Sunday 13 March 2022

Maison Kitsune Cafe was not my Parisienne Dream

Cafe Kitsune is the newest addition to Vancouver's coffee scene. The allure of a Parisienne-inspired cafe where I could live my best "Emily in Paris" life was just too great to miss out on. Quietly opening its doors to Vancouverites along Water Street in Gastown, Cafe Kitsune offers classic caffeinated beverages and a small selection of eats. 

The lattes were served at our table in beautiful porcelain cups on a matching saucer. I do not think I have ever seen porcelain dishware at a casual eatery before, but I loved it and felt posh sipping out of the pearlescent cups. I had a classic matcha latte while my friend joining me opted for a plain latte. We paired our hot beverages with some food off of their brunch menu. The food is very rich, so go when you are hungry!

The Smoked Salmon Croque Madame was a hit with both of us. Between two thick cut pieces of sourdough bread are slices of smoked salmon before being toasted golden brown. The sandwich was blanketed in melted cheese and a picture-perfect sunny-side up egg. A simple mixed green salad completed the plate. 

For the life of me, I cannot remember the name of the second dish, but it was mushrooms sautéed in butter folded into fluffy scrambled eggs. The rich buttery proteins were accompanied by two generous halves of baguette. When I say they used a lot of butter, I meant A LOT of butter. This had to be the most decadent rich-buttered scrambled eggs ever. 

The cafe itself has beautiful design elements, from rich chocolate-toned wood to brass fixtures. The Maison Kitsune pulls influences from France and Japan. I really enjoyed the use of traditional Japanese walls. I also have to give them bonus points for enforcing the "No Laptops Allowed" rule because there is limited seating and the Parisiennes go to cafes to chat and relax, not work! 

Adjacent to the Cafe Kitsune is their clothing brand, Maison Kitsune. I love the cute little orange fox logo, but for a basic solid-coloured piece, I just could not stomach the price tag. In fact, I do not understand why anyone would pay so much for just navy blue sweat pants or hoodies or T-shirts. I was expecting more exciting unique pieces, not simple basics in boring neutral colours.

I do not think I will be heading back as the space is small and felt a bit claustrophobic. Also, for some reason, I thought their hot beverages are served with Fox shaped shortbread cookies, but it has to be ordered separately. So I was a bit sad when my matcha latte arrived without a cookie. Would be a cute touch to add! 

Another turn-off for me was the pricing of their merchandise. I was under the impression that Maison Kitsune is a higher end clothing, so to see products next door in Cafe Kitsune like glasses and bags with the logo slapped across it really cheapened the brand for me. They had Duralex bistro glasses with simple black text retailing for over $20 CAD a piece! That is madness considering a pack of 6 retails for that amount (I bought mine at Gild&Co). Also, I really hate when brands produce "city" specific merchandise by plastering the city name across generic cheap pieces

Needless to say, my excitement waned quickly. Let me know what your thoughts are on Cafe Kitsune and if you have checked out their Vancouver location yet.


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