One of my favorite places I visited in San Francisco is the People’s Cafe on Haight Street. This is where my friend Minima holds her Thursday night writing group, Write City, which is the sister group to our Seattle group, Write Club. People’s Cafe is owned by a man who is able to speak six times more languages than the average American. He is originally from Vietnam, though if I understood correctly, his ancestors are Chinese. His staff includes his thirteen-year-old son, a super cute American girl with Betty Page hair and wild makeup, another Vietnamese-Chinese man, and several Latino men. All of the employees seem like really cool people. The owner and the other Vietnamese-Chinese man were kind enough to speak Chinese with me, even though my speaking skills are still pretty bad!
People’s Cafe serves all kinds of food. They have great sandwiches and what I am pretty sure are the best muffins I have ever had in my life (pumpkin & cream cheese). For beverages, they serve everything from lattes to beer.
I love the way the cafe looks. The color of the walls looks great with all the local artwork displayed inside. The tables have transparent glass tops, with a layer of coffee beans sealed under the glass. In the restroom, everything is painted a dark red, and I do mean EVERYTHING (except the toilet). Even the paper towel dispenser and the mirror have been painted over, but someone has scratched some of the dried paint off to reveal a small piece of the mirror’s reflective surface. Customers have scrawled graffiti in black permanent marker all over the walls and door.
For those of you who read my post on Seattle coffee shops, the atmosphere and clientele of the People’s Cafe are like a mix of Solstice and Sureshot’s. There are hipster kids and gutter punks, frat boys and artists, street musicians and tall blond European tourists. I really like the diversity of the clientele and staff. This place is truly the people's cafe. It draws every type of person in the world.
Here are some photos of the cafe, including one of me with the owner: