If it’s Friday, it must be France …
I love success stories, don’t you? The reason I’m a little late posting this is because I took a few hours this evening to watch the movie The Help with my DH. As well as being an important and well-told story, author Kathryn Stockett’s backstory about writing The Help is one everyone should hear. It’s a true success story.
She received 60 rejections over a five-year period before one brave agent with an eye for a good story saw the truth in it. Click here to read it from my archives, in case you missed it. She’s hilarious and her personal journey is inspiring to all of us who believe in our writing.
Okay, I’m getting off topic … as I do … this post is about France and it’s about success. It’s about a young couple I met in Antibes whose story also inspired me.
Meet Julie and Victor, the owners of Choopy’s, who are natives of nearby Nice and about as sincere and delightful a young couple as you could ever hope to meet. This warm and welcoming shop is in the old town of Antibes, through a short archway off Rue de La République.
I have to admit I’m not a true coffee drinker, unlike my DH who is an espresso afficionado.
I am … full confession here … a faux-coffee drinker. I need chocolate in it . Give me a Café Mocha or a Moccacino and I’m in heaven. I appreciate how seriously the French take their café and I know it’s kind of bad manners to even think of having anything but a café (i.e. espresso) or a café crème so I had been pretending for several weeks that I was cool with that (plus a LOT of sugar). But I wasn’t.
So … Choopy’s was new and had a cosmopolitan ambiance AND they had free wifi – bonus! I wandered in one day to see if possibly they might have one of these North American aberrations on their menu. They didn’t. “Pas de problème!” said Victor with his wonderful smile. “Explain what it is and I’ll make you one.” I did and he did. Magnifique!
Julie, a beautiful and engaging young woman, is a graduate of a prestigious 5-year culinary program. Vincent has a degree in business and finance. Soon after graduation they began working. It took no time for Julie to realize she wanted to be in contact with people and Vincent knew he preferred baking cakes to crunching numbers. Their quest began to figure out just what it was they could do to make this happen.
Like so many other young people, they packed up and had an adventure working and traveling in Australia and Bali. All the while they were on the lookout for something that might be a sign as to what sort of business they should open. It didn’t take long for the sign to appear and surprisingly it was in the shape of … CUPCAKES!
It seemed as if every coffee shop in Australia also served cupcakes. Mon Dieu! Qu’est-ce que c’est? Who had heard of cupcakes in France? Not many. You can find more types of pastries in France than practically anywhere else in the world … but not cupcakes!
Visiting cupcake bakeries in Australia before they left, they were convinced that this was their future. A bit of research back home indicated only one bakery in Paris was making cupcakes. Amazing. I mean, seriously, who doesn’t enjoy a good cupcake … or two? Julie has become a cupcake goddess and every kind I sampled through the summer was über-delicieux!
Along with the ever-changing selection of cupcakes there are several other equally delicious choices to accompany your coffee. Victor’s banana bread with it’s mouth-watering crunchy topping has already established it’s own reputation.
Lunches and Sunday brunches are also served with all ingredients fresh from the daily market. Get there early as the space fills up quickly. The word has spread and this bright, hard-working and absolutely delightful young couple are seeing their business become a most successful venture.
It was always a pleasure to stop in and see how busy they were. Their energy and commitment to their business is evident in everything they do. Customer service is their focus and after just a few months it was obvious they were becoming a very important part of the charming old town in Antibes. Never too busy for a smile and a friendly exchange, make sure you stop by the next time you are in the neighbourhood!
The strawberry cupcakes are to die for … but then, so are the chocolate … and … um, well, the Cupcakes De Noël are out now too. Just try them all!
And ask them how they decided upon the name of their shop … very cute …
Here’s their Facebook link. Stop in and “like” them – they deserve it. Merci beaucoup!
What are some success stories that have inspired you? Have you ever done your homework, taken a big breath and begun something completely new and different in your life? Would you do it again?
Louise Graham says
I really do look forward to reading your blogs and this one was fab! Who doesn’t love cup cakes (at 7.30 in the morning I know what the desire for one mind!!)
Never been a coffee drinker myself and only this week I was saying to a friend I wish I drank it … Will certianly try the chocolate based ones and see how I get on.. Coffee drinking is so social!!
Thanks for stopping by, Lou! Be careful though … those mocha coffee drinks are addictive! Consider yourself warned, my friend!
Oh I loooove cupcakes. =) And that banana bread looks awesome! I do a lot of things different in my life – writing, designing websites, jewelry making, blogging etc. Just one day it seems to appear in my life and then I’m off and running with it. Sure I’d do it again – and I’m pretty darn positive I will! =)
Carrie, you are a success story in a whole bunch of different ways!
Catherine Johnson says
The shop loves lovely and the food looks delicious and so cute. I love chocolate in my coffee too 🙂
Thank you Patricia for your wonderful post on our coffee-shop.
You were the first mokaccino guest but not the last at all 🙂
It’s a real pleasure to read this post ant it makes us proud to give always the best to our guests.
Thank you again.
Hope to see you soon !
jennifer tanner says
I wish Choopy’s much success! I’ve always admired entreprenurial spirit. I love breakfast, and I’ve always wanted to open a place that just serves breakfast. Maybe six tables and counter seating.
My husband started his business while he was in business school. Thirty years later, it’s still going strong. Some risks pay off. Others don’t. But it takes perseverence and a strong will to succeed.
After looking at the pics, I’m thinking about making some coconut cupcakes!
“Jen’s Breakfast Diner” – that has a nice ring to it! It’s nice to hear that your husband took a chance and made it pay off too. Love those stories!
Oh, Yum! That banana bread looks amazing! Wonder what he uses for his topping? Who would’ve thought they wouldn’t have cupcakes in France? I love Choopy’s story and hope their business continues to grow. Beautiful pics, too, Patricia as always. 🙂
That topping is SO good! If you ask him on their F/B page, he might just tell you. They are the sweetest couple.
Natalie Hartford says
The place looks DIVINE! I wish I could just stroll in and enjoy a hot, steamy cup of coffee and a delicious cupcake! Heavenly. I will go “like” them on FB for sure!
As for success stories that inspired me. My Mom. She got her bachelors degree at 46 years old after taking “one course a year” for 12 years and then quitting her job and going back fulltime for her last year. And then, a few years later, she did a masters in adult education. She taught me that it’s never too late…and that a university education is a must-have. She was the reason I went and graduated!
Angela Orlowski-Peart says
Oh, those cupcakes look fabulous. I love the story and the photos of Choopy — I wish such place existed close to my house 🙂 I wish them a lot of success!
Angela Wallace says
What a cute looking shop! I’d so go there if I wasn’t allergic.
Tameri Etherton says
Ah, cupcakes and mocha. That sounds like heaven. Except, I can’t drink coffee anymore, but I bet they make some killer tea. A nice tea and something sweet. I’m telling you, Patricia, I have GOT to go to France now and visit all these fab places! Love this post. Oh, and I liked them on FB and said you highly recommend the place. ; )
They would make some killer tea especially for you! Thanks for liking them on F/B. Very sweet of you!