Somehow, within just a few blocks from each other in the Faubourg Marigny, four coffee shops -- Flora's, Sound Café, Marigny Perks and the Orange Couch -- have managed to find their own niche and coexist feeding the caffeine jones, social yearnings and light-snack cravings of their neighbors. But cross over to the Bywater and it's evidently a different story.
It was an incredibly eccentric place -- in décor, feel and clientele -- and it seemed right in tune with the neighborhood vibe. I'm not sure what did it in. There isn't much competition in the neighborhood, unlike the hyper-clustered Marigny coffeehouse scene up the road, and it always seemed busy enough when I visited for a crepe and a huge cup of chicory coffee.
But a sign on the now-locked door indicates a new place called Satsuma Café will open here soon. More on what that's all about when we get details.