Best Internet Café (2006)

Kafka's Café

Franz Kafka was so sickly and miserable that he whiled away half his life in sanatoriums and wrote volumes about man's alienation in a grotesque, unintelligible, and hostile world. A visit to his funky South Beach namesake (open 7:30 a.m. to midnight) might have improved his humor. After all, its gracious staff and low-key atmosphere are enough to put even the most anxiety-ridden existentialist at ease. The pleasant vibe is thanks, in part, to the benevolent Deamici family, which owns and operates the business. Some member of the clan is usually around to lend customers a hand or, if needed, a sympathetic ear. Kafka Café also offers fast Internet access for just $4 per hour -- far cheaper than its South Beach competitors. And it has dozens of magazines you won't find elsewhere. Looking for the latest issue of Action Pursuit Games, the paintball enthusiasts' rag? Kafka has it, along with Feminist News Journal, Fly Tyer, and Concrete Wave. It also sells French, Italian, Arabic, and Spanish newspapers and cheaper-than-cheap used books. Hardcovers run just $3, softbacks a paltry buck. There's no discernible order to the shelving; The Ann Landers Encyclopedia sits cheek and jowl with Ice Hockey Made Simple and A Nietzsche Reader. So be prepared to do some trolling. But your effort will almost certainly be rewarded. And once you're done hunting, you can kick back on a sofa, enjoy some treats (think Nutella crpes, fruit smoothies, crisp salads, and espresso drinks). Or, better yet, take in some deliciously quirky art, like the armless, chartreuse-and-indigo mannequin that dangles from the ceiling.


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