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Thirst for life: New local cafe brings the vibes

Cafe la Reine interior

By Sarabeth Castro

Hey coffee lovers, there is a new café in town: Café La Reine.

The eclectic French-inspired café opened its door in June of last year. According to the manager and one of the co-owners, Jolene McClelland, they were encouraged to open the cafe because of the area’s warm community. Their vision is to be a great place to hang out, bring in talented people for quality baking, get to know the customers, and celebrate good food.

There is an eye-catching neon sign in the middle of the restaurant that says, “Soif de Vivre.” Meaning thirst for life, the phrase is somewhat the mantra of the café–they want to bring excitement every time you dine and thirst for more.   

Neon sign that says Soif de Vivre
Photo by Sarabeth Castro

It was a bumpy start at first for the business because of covid, but they  see improvement after the ease of restrictions. They are even starting to see “regulars” enjoying their freshly baked goodies once more. 

The cafe serves decadent coffee, with a wide choice from homogenized, skim, almond, oat, soy, or coconut milk. The most popular drinks are the matcha latte, the london fog, and the white lavender drink. McClelland said that customers are more creative in trying out the specialty ones. In addition, they make beautiful custom cakes recommended for birthdays and special occasions.

flatlay of food
Photo by Sarabeth Castro

Aside from the drinks, they have a full bakery and kitchen menu. You can indulge in their freshly baked pastries like Almond Croissant and Paris Brest. The newest pastry is the “Dacquoise” cookie, which is similar to a  Macaron; it is like a delicate, light sponge that is a little crispy on the outside and chewy inside, filled with strawberry and buttercream. They are so yummy!

McClelland shared that the café has new and exciting events coming soon where they will showcase talents through visual arts and markets like jewellery, crafts like pottery, etc., every month. For those interested, they will be posting updates on their instagram

The employees are also excited about the new menu items they are working on. They will bring in more soup, along with vegan and healthy options. “A lot of seasonal changes, all are fresh,” McClelland added. 

Café La Reine has a welcoming ambiance where they also open their patio in summer and springtime, and there is enough parking to bring your family and friends. So, if you are feeling Emily or Gabriel in “Emily in Paris”, or you want to have great food and drink, you better visit Café La Reine. They are located at 8927D 82 Avenue, and are open Mondays to Sundays from 9-6. You can also visit their website, instagram, and facebook.

(cover photo via @cafe.la.reine instagram)

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