The Bell Jar
Wednesday May 12, 2010·
The Harlem end of Smith Street is no more. What was once a dilapidated, slightly lower Queens and 4th feel area, has transformed into a beguiling and quaint precinct for espresso and homemade chutney. There it is, nestled neatly between a psychiatrist and a brothel… the Bell Jar. Now, a loyal person I am not. But my cafe whoring ways were quashed the moment their 'Five Senses' Sumatran espresso danced on my tongue, in what can only be described as the best moment of my life. (Nay, 2nd best; that $10K when Aunty Mildred died was pretty darn good.)
I bite into my sweet ricotta hotcakes with passionfruit curd as Bob Dylan coos to me. Sigh. Brimming with optimistic cynics, Steiner mums and coffee alumni, the Bell Jar warms the cockles of yer heart with its forget-me-not charm and whimsy. Quirky staff pander to my every whim, and even bring me a delicious slice of cinnamon and demerara-encrusted walnut banana bread on the house! Golly. A monogamous woman I have become.
The Bell Jar is the quintessence of subtlety and community. Even resident le chat noir ‘Eidelweiss' makes a sulky appearance. And let's face it; everybody loves a morbid literary reference for a name. Sylvia would be proud indeed.