Personal {Chestnuts Cafe}

By joselle - September 16, 2020

“She's an old soul with young eyes, a vintage heart, and a beautiful mind.”
― Nicole Lyons

Chestnuts Café is tucked inside a run-down alley behind the glossy high-rises of GYQ, another new café in what used to be an old apartment unit.The next-door units also look like they've been transformed into craft shops and cafes, but were closed so we couldn't know for sure. The upper floors remain occupied by tenants, so looking up you'd likely see laundry hanging from the balconies, planters sitting by windowsills mixed with old toys and broken electric fans.

A few steps from the café you can see small noodle stalls selling for 5RMB, the backs of kitchens, people peddling fruits and vegetables on carts. This isn't really a place one would expect to find a retro-inspired café. But it's here, they're here now, sprouting like mushrooms after a rainy day and it's fun discovering them to see what they offer, side from the eclectic curated décor and the fur cushions on wood-and-wicker lounges. 

The owners recommend their Thai tea, but too late, I had already ordered the matcha in ice. My glass was still good though, creamy and earthy with that characteristic leafy aftertaste. The husband stuck to his American coffee but this time with ice, since it was really hot. I made a mental note to go back to try the Thai tea, hopefully served warm and perfect for fall. 

The shop is small and is also a boutique. Going in I think we interrupted a trunk sale. The space outside was a charming extension of the shop though, and that afternoon we had the front yard to ourselves as we people-watched and stretched our legs after a long walk. 

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Say hello! Coffee, perhaps? :)