The trade between France and Merida brought us Marseille Tiles for the roofs and floors in the 19th century. Now it's more recently brought us the cafe culture that allows us to sit with a coffee for hours or enjoy a light lunch or snack.
Cafe Creme I somehow managed to snub for the past 6 or 8 months or however long they have been off the corner of Calle 41 and 60. I've had enough bad experiences with french food and pastry in the Yucatan to last me several reincarnations. But as my french god daughter is doing her gap year in the Yucatan and her mere was visiting me this week we dropped by for a cafe (sans creme). The place was packed at 11 in the morning and we chose a table outside after someone more stealth than us slid into the table we wanted inside. I had a fluffy yummy quiche with cheese and spinach served on a big plate with a little salad.The French mom had carrot cake and the enfant had a chocolate chip cookie...not too french for a french cafe but the owners and servers were nice and the coffee was very good. And you can shop at Bodega 41 or El Estudio for gifts and crap for the home.
Bistro Cultural on the corner of 66 and 43 has 3 or 4 daily specials and always one or two are vegetarian though the French chefs specialties are pates and sausages. You can meet the chef on saturdays at the slow food market and most of the offerings are organic or locally grown. I was a weekly client before summer vacation. This winter I've been a couple of times and it's much more popular than before. In fact it fills up and by 3 there may not be much of a choice in the menu. This is a place that keeps getting better. It's a bit off the beaten path.
There is a new French Bakery called Escargo on calle 58 between 57 and 59 in the pretty colonial red building...Bea from Coqui Coqui buys her pastries and she is a bread and cake fiend. I've had a really nice pain au raisin from there that sent me briefly back to the Rue de Seine and for that I am eternally grateful.