Leoty Life caught up with the co-founder of Maisie Café—a vegan and gluten-free haven in Paris—Isabella Capece, who gave us insights into her Mediterranean food cravings and fitness choices, as well as educating us on the surprisingly complex process of cold press juice extraction!
Q: How did you get the inspiration for Maisie Café?
A: I have been cooking for friends and family for most of my life, inspired by a strong Mediterranean influence. 10 years ago on work trips to New York and Los Angeles, I discovered cold pressed juicing and macrobiotics! Maisie Café is the expression of my very active and urban lifestyle.
Q: How did you bring the healthy juice trend to Paris, where it was still relatively unknown?
A: The cold pressed juice trend is still relatively unknown in Paris if you compare it to London, New York or Los Angeles! The process of cold press juice extraction is a fastidious and slow one that allows one to extract juice from vegetables and fruits without heating them: no pasteurization, no HPP (high pressure processing), and no fibres, only the nutrients; all of this combined allows your digestive system to rest. It has all the benefits for a healthy and balanced diet and it’s super tasty.
Q: What do you typically eat in a day?
A: Food is only attractive to me if it’s good! I tend to favour tasty Mediterranean or Levantine cuisine, mostly seasonal and plant-based proteins.
Q: What are the benefits of a vegetarian diet for your health and body?
A: I have been lucky as my plant-based diet has come progressively to me. It has made me more creative and demanding with food, pushing me to learn more about different plant-based proteins to get the necessary amino acids. I live in an urban environment and this diet definitely helps to provide more resistance to both pollution and stress. It has improved the quality of my sleep too.
Q: Can you tell us a bit about your exercise regime?
A: I have been practicing Iyengar yoga on a daily basis for a few years now. I also love to swim and practice Pilates on a weekly basis.
Q: What is your favorite yoga class in Paris?
A: I do my own daily Iyengar practice at home or at Kshanti Yoga, a great studio in the heart of St Germain. Catalina, the founder, is committed to offering the best yoga classes. We often partner for wellness workshops or retreats!
Q: Is there anywhere else in the world you like to live one day?
A: I love Paris and my job here, but my lifestyle is strongly inspired by the Californian way of life. We try to escape there as much as we can to find new ideas, relax and see our friends.
Q: How would you describe French style?
A: I am not French, but I do have to thank them for encouraging me to find my own style and sticking to it!
Q: Where can we find you shopping, and what do you typically splurge on?
A: I am very attracted to activewear, it allows me to go to work and work out all in one, and I like to add young designer pieces to my outfit. However, for the most part we splurge on travel and food! I love to discover new spots.
Q: And finally, can you share your favorite Ernest Leoty pieces with us