Monday, November 16, 2009

The Paris Coffee Shop

I get every other Friday off, and on the Fridays when I don't have other plans, I like to explore Fort Worth from the saddle of a bicycle. Sometimes I do a breakfast ride to somewhere I haven't been before. I searched through Fort Worth Hole in the Wall and noticed the entry for the Paris Coffee Shop at Magnolia and Hemphill. I thought, you know, I've never been there before! And off I went.

Part of the reason I like these rides is a chance to see Fort Worth up close and personal, from the quirky to the classic. For instance, Friday the 13th was apparently Miss Gonzalez's 40th birthday. I don't know Miss Gonzalez, but those who love her announced her birthday to the Colonial Country Club neighborhood.

Going a little further east, just past the zoo, is a cool building that houses the Forest Park Apartments in background with a little "gatehouse" in the foreground. There is a gatehouse on either side of Park Place Avenue on the west side of Forest Park Boulevard.

A short ride beyond that and my trusty Schwinn Varsity got me to the Paris Coffee Shop.

Fort Worth Hole in the Wall describes the shop thus: "Paris Coffee Shop has great food, a cool location, and a dingy cluttered interior that seems about right." This is an apt description. There is no pretense in this place. Just stuff to cook and serve food, and friendly people to do it. They don't have an ambiance, unless you count the pictures of famous people on the west wall.

What they have is good, basic food. I was in a waffle mood. The food got to me incredibly quickly.

My coffee cup was always full, and the price was right.

I can see how the place stays open... very good stuff.

But my ride is about more than breakfast. Like I said, I like to explore. A few blocks down Magnolia, there was some work going on at the old Gunn's Cleaners. I've admired this building for a while and hoped something good would go in there.

The guy on the left side of the picture explained to me that a brew pub will soon be in the building. It needed extensive renovation to repair the roof which was heavily damaged by a fire some years ago. The worker I talked to was restoring the windows on either side of the front door. He said that eventually the windows along the east wall,

will be replaced by similarly constructed windows (the originals were knocked out while fighting the fire). They were just getting ready to pour the new concrete floor the morning I was there.

You can see the new roof in this shot; I suspect the rafters will remain visible when the pub opens.

Cutting through the bike-friendly Fairmount neighborhood on my way home, I noticed the Arts Fifth Avenue building.

According to the sign, it should have been open when I was there, but it didn't seem like anyone was around. I hope they're still going. Their website seems to indicate they are.

This next picture looks kind of scenic, but I took it to show the construction zone on the riverfront Trinity River Trail. Normally a multi-use path (MUP) allows people to cross University Drive under the road bridge along the river. That path is currently closed while they reconstruct it to improve sight lines to make it safer.

The construction zone starts at the right side of the picture and goes all the way up to the University Drive bridge on the left side, and beyond, all the way to Rogers Road.

I'll end this post with a few pictures of my 1973 Schwinn Varsity.


Christopher Johnson said...

Here's a guy with a classy bike who knows how to have a big time in the big city.

Steve A said...

Golly, now I want to try out the Paris Coffee Shop! Does Doohickie really work for the Fort Worth Chamber of Commerce in his spare time?

Big Oak said...

Great tour - thanks! Paris Coffee Shop looks like my kind of place.

HeidiTri's said...

Oh, to have a free day and beautiful weather for a ride like that! You are a lucky man.

Jon said...

I saw a really nice orange Schwinn (don't recaall if it was a Varsity or a Collegiate) at a yard sale, recently. I looked it over, made eye contact with the guy having the sale and, when he just continued raking leaves, I left it behind.

Kinda wish he had been more interested in doing business..

Bruce's Bike Blog said...

That was fun! Cheers! Bruce

twister said...

That's the good thing about living on the south side of FW, I think. The ability to travel from there up to the near south side fairly easily. I live on the far north side and I'm not so sure I'd want to travel through it (the north side) down to the trinity trails.