Italy coffee tour: Where to go and what to know

GETTING THERE

Lufthansa offers connecting flights from Washington Dulles to Venice, with mid-June fares currently starting at $1,350 round trip. Train travel among the cities should be arranged in advance during tourist season. Rail passes and individual tickets are available through Trenitalia (www.trenitalia.com).

Venice

WHERE TO STAY

Hotel Centauro

Calle de la Vida, Campo Manin 4297

011-39-041-522-5832

www.hotelcentauro.com

Spare but elegant hotel with vintage charm on a quiet side street a short stroll from Piazza San Marco. Rooms from $120, including breakfast.

WHERE TO HAVE COFFEE

Caffe Florian

Procuratie Nuove, Piazza San Marco

011-39-041-520-5641

www.caffeflorian.com

Supposedly the oldest cafe in Italy. Walk to the back bar for an espresso to avoid the high table charge. Espresso about $3.25.

Torrefazione Marchi

Cannaregio 1337

011-39-041-716-371

www.torrefazionemarchi.it

Roastery and cafe just outside the historic Jewish ghetto district. Espresso about $1.30.

WHERE TO EAT

Gam-Gam

Cannaregio 1122

011-39-041-523-1495

Homey spot near the main entrance to the Jewish ghetto, offering such traditional Jewish Italian dishes as fried artichokes and “eggplant ghetto style.” Entrees start at about $10.

Florence

WHERE TO STAY

Hotel Burchianti

Via del Giglio 8, Santa Maria Novella

011-39-055-212-796

burchianti.hotelinfirenze.com

Each room in this hotel near the Duomo features an original ceiling fresco and antique furniture. Rooms from $120.

WHERE TO HAVE COFFEE

Caffe Scudieri

Piazza San Giovanni 19

011-39-055-210-733

Sweet and caramel-like espresso, with a nutty bite and luscious crema, about $1.45.

Giubbe Rosse

Piazza della Repubblica 13/14

011-39-055-212-280

www.giubberosse.it

Long the meeting place of playwrights, poets, philosophers and politicians. Espresso $1.30.

WHERE TO EAT

Osteria Santo Spirito

Piazza di Santo Spirito 16/r

011-39-055-238-2383

www.osteriasantospirito.it

Lively, perpetually crowded Tuscan restaurant. Main dishes start at $24.

Rome

WHERE TO STAY

The Beehive

Via Marghera 8

011-039-06-4470-4553

www.the-beehive.com

Funky hostel-cum-hotel offering dorm-style and private lodging. Rooms from $105.

WHERE TO HAVE COFFEE

Sant’Eustachio il Caffe

Piazza di Sant’Eustachio 82

011-39-06-880-2048

www.santeustachioilcaffe.it

The kiss of sugar is part of what makes the espresso here so legendary. About $3.25.

WHERE TO EAT

’Gusto

Piazza Augusto Imperatore 9

011-39-06-322-6273

www.gusto.it

This split-personality venue is part buzzy restaurant, part jazz club, part wine bar and part cozy kitchenware shop. Entrees from about $21.

Naples

WHERE TO STAY

Hotel Correra 241

Via Correra 241

011-39-081-1956-2842

www.correra241.hotelsinnapoli.com

Comfortable modern hotel in the Centro Storico district. Rooms from $120.

WHERE TO HAVE COFFEE

Caffe Mexico

Piazza Dante 86

011-39-081-549-9330

Baristas man massive espresso machines for a crowd that’s perpetually two or three deep against the counter. About $1.20.

Gran Caffe Gambrinus

Via Chiaia 1/2

011-39-081-417-582

www.grancaffegambrinus.com

So what if the baristas are gruff? In this town, it seems that the surliest baristas make the sweetest shots. About $1.30.

WHERE TO EAT

Pizzeria Brandi

Salita Sant’Anna di Palazzo 2

011-39-081-416-928

www.brandi.it

They’ve been slinging pies in this space since 1780 and reportedly invented the Margherita in 1889 as a royal tribute. Tasting menus from $45.

INFORMATION

www.italia.it/en

 
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