Kaffiskränzchen – where to go for coffee, tea and cake
If you fancy a patisserie and a pot of coffee, or a spot of afternoon tea and cake, here are four places you should try
Kaffiskränzchen is the Luxembourgish term for coffee with cake. Luxembourg excels in cakes and patisseries that come in all shapes and sizes, from the dainty French choux ones, to the heavier German strudels. But if you want to do it in style, these four places should fit the bill nicely.
Ladurée – 7 rue des Capucins, Luxembourg City
Plush chairs, soft green décor, gilt mirrors and plenty of plants, this feels like a tea room from yesteryear. The window displays of pyramids of macarons are enough to have you salivating before you’ve entered.
The café uses a recipe that was created when the original bakery in Paris was founded as a high-class team room in 1862 by Ernest Ladurée. Apparently it was his little cousin, Pierre Desfontaines, who created the house speciality – macarons. This extension to the famous French tea room on rue des Capucins, opened its doors in 2016.
Don’t worry, if you’re not a fan of the sugary, light macaron, you can select from an array of delicate pastries. Just remember to use your napkin to dab the sides of your mouth, and stick your little finger out when you sup.
Bubblies – Cloche d’Or shopping centre
Hygge and very modern, but nevertheless plush and comfy, Bubblies has blue velvet banquettes and comfy chairs with plenty of cushions to prop up your elbow while you savour its delights. This is the place for high tea complete with the layered tray, fancy teapot and China cups. It may seem a bit Anglo-Saxon (as their website says), but they have a good selection of teas from Japanese Sencha to Cocktail Azteque and Marrakesh Night. And if you prefer, they have traditional English tea (or Darjeeling and Earl Grey), and even a selection of rare teas from China and Japan.
Don’t worry, it’s not all tea, you’ll get scones with cream and jam, little sandwiches and plenty of cakes, including their infamous home-made cheesecake. Come wearing an elasticated waistband.
There's a second Bubblies in Belair which is open in the afternoon (except Sunday) for cake but not the full "high tea" experience.
Cocottes Chimay - 8 rue Chimay
Pink sofas with plump cushions and big armchairs, this is a great place for a spot of afternoon coffee, and the most snug of all the Cocottes (although the ones in Leudelange and Belle Etoile are also less of the Cocottes workaday style with wooden benches and stools).
Open Monday to Saturday 8.00 to 18.30, this is the place to come if you have food intolerances or want to sample something strictly vegan. This includes their brownies, vanilla cake, banana bread and compote, but sadly not their orange and passion fruit cheesecake and eclairs.
There is a pretty decent selection of patisseries including lemon meringue, banoffee or damson pie, and chocolate, fig or raspberry tart. If you'd prefer to swap an afternoon tea with a glass of wine, head to their Wine Not establishment.
Boulangerie-Pâtisserie Kremer-Jakoby - 11 Bd Pierre Dupong
A little out of town but just around the corner from Merl Park if you fancy a stroll before or after. The seating area is small, but cosy and intimate for a good bit of gossiping.
Founded in 1954, Kremer bakery and pastry shop uses traditional recipes passed down over three generations, and is now in the competent hands of Marc and Philippe. It's open from 6.00 to 18.00 on weekdays and until noon on Saturday. You'll get a good selection of pastries plus petit fours and chocolates made on the premises for a little extra indulgence.
The usual suspects – Patisserie Hoffmann, Paul, Oberweis and Namur
You can always get a good quality pastry and a fancy coffee at these establishments. Not all of them have the same plush décor and Kaffiskränchzen-feel. For Patisserie Hoffmann, the nicest location is in Bridel, where the interior has a glamourous element, but there’s also a pretty terrace overlooking the surrounding countryside (and a play area, which might be a blessing or a curse depending on which way you look at it).
Paul doesn’t do a bad job of making you feel like your surroundings are vaguely fitting for high tea (or coffee, since they do that best). The latest addition at the Kirchberg Infinity Centre is probably the nicest, together with the one in Foetz. They’ve been going since 1889 so they must be doing something right. Unfortunately, they don’t wait on tables.
For Oberweis, the Cloche d’Or establishment has a certain level of fancy, with grey comfy chairs, banquettes and light wispy curtains, whilst the Namur at the Belle Etoile shopping centre has the nicest interior of their cafes (although the service could be a tad better and the coffee a smidgeon hotter). There is a terrace in summer, but you’ll be looking out on the giant car park.
More indulgence - on the go
If you want a pastry on the go for Kaffiskränchzen at your desk or kitchen table, then head to the ever-popular Boulangerie Pâtisserie Pascal in Limpertsberg, and Pâtisserie Viaduc does actually have a few nice leather sofas and gets praise on high for its rich and flavoursome pastries and cheese cake. Au Pain du Mary makes delightful birthday cakes but also has, according to one reviewer, "the lightest and flakiest viennoserie" and some pretty good caramel macarons.
If you don't have time for a coffee but want a sweet treat, head to Royal Donuts at Hamilius, where takeaway ones come in cute little boxes. There is a staggering choice of toppings and fillings, ice-cream filled mini-moons and coffee to go.
And for a selection of teas from around the globe, beautifully packaged and ready to fill your teapot, try TeeGschwendner at 8 rue Notre Dame.