Italy: Antico Caffe Greco, Rome

Yesterday I told you that my favourite neighbourhood in Rome was Tridente, and I’m about to tell you one of the biggest reasons why.

Tucked in between the stores selling tailored suits and designer handbags on Via Condotti is a little place called Antico Caffe Greco that I was dying to go to.

It’s unassuming from the outside, and you’d walk right by it if you didn’t know any better. But inside is a perfect time capsule of Cafe Society.

Bow-tied waiters bring you coffee in tiny, porcelain cups as you take your seat in what feels more like an art gallery than a cafe.

Their list of regulars back in the day included Stendhal, Goete, Byron, Mendelssohn, Wagner, Liszt, Hans Christian Anderson, and even Casanova himself.

Caffe Greco isn’t just riding on their historical coattails, though. Everything is just as swank and the coffee is still done to perfection.

And oh my god, the pastries!

They have a luxurious selection of Italian classics. It took me absolutely ages to choose, as everything looked so delicious.

I ended up getting a pastry filled with ricotta and chocolate, and an espresso con panna since I was already feeling so indulgent.

I’m genuinely salivating again just looking at the photo on my screen!

It was too rich for me to finish, however, so if you do go I would thoroughly recommend splitting a pastry with a friend. They aren’t large, but they are very heavy.

Later into the evening, Caffe Greco turns into a eccentric little bar.

Couples sit in dark corners sipping cocktails, and when the night gets late enough someone inevitably starts playing on the lacquered grand piano, with everyone gathering around to sing along.

It’s a terrific atmosphere that makes me pinch myself to make sure I’m not somehow on the set of some new Woody Allen film.

But even during the morning, it’s atmosphere is something that can’t be beat, and is like nowhere else I’ve ever been.

And so, having finished my rather indulgent breakfast at a leisurely pace, I went to meet Olivia (at the Spanish Steps, of course!) to continue exploring more of the city.


Rosalie Le Gander

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