Ideally located for students from the nearby Bibliothèque François Mitterand who’ve emerged to refuel, L’Arobase knows how to pander to its customer base. Very reasonable set lunches (such as the Formule Jaune: hot drink, salad or soup and slice of quiche for €7.70) and a great selection of cakes and patisseries make this a useful pit stop. If you’re the kind of person who cares about your coffee, it’s probably best to give the house brew a miss – but the excellent cheesecake (€3.60) is a great substitute.
The bagels are the main offering, with some imaginative fillings such as the Queens (capers, ham, Emmental, cream cheese, tomatoes, salad) or the Soho (cream cheese, figs, goats cheese, honey and bacon). The spacious seating area has ample table space and comfy banquettes at the back to commandeer for an afternoon, though if you’re keen to get your nose back in the books you can also ask to take away. The long opening hours and internet café downstairs for those without their own laptop are useful extras. It’s the thoughtful details – the rack of today’s newspapers lined up against the wall, the plug sockets helpfully spaced around the room, the gentle lighting – that make this café worth a return visit.