Korda thrived in the cauldron of Budapest cafe life and befriended people who would help him in his quest to become" a great man"Is cauldron of Budapest cafe life a metaphor?if not, what does the sentence mean, as a whole?
I have seen cannibals boiling the great hunter in a cauldron in old movies.
Since cauldrons are so big, many bits and pieces can go into it to make one "soup.' The use of the term has become, as you said, a metaphor. In this case the example means that by frequently going to the cafe, Korda was exposed to a vastly differing amount of experiences and a myriad of personality types in the people who frequent the cafe..