Pastry and Coffee Spots in Venice

Here’s a list if some if my favorite places in Venice. While Venice is not a large city, there are numerous small Pasticceria around the six sestieri (six zones). As I am usually there to work, my selections come from the area where we rent an appartment and my path to Murano.
Il Cafe Florian:
The Oldest Coffee Shop in Italy stands in Piazza San Marco. It opened in 1720 by Florian Francescone.

It is expensive, but one of the great places to enjoy the history and scenery. Lord Byron, Marcel Proust, Charles Dickens and Casanova all have enjoyed the service at this great cafe.  Don’t worry the menu is in multiple languages.

Rosa Salva:

Not only is Rosa Salva a great pastry shop/small caffe, they also send their tasty breakfast rolls throughout Venice and Murano to the many bars and restaurants. They have 3 locations by their own name in Venice:  San Marco, Calle Fiubera which is the headquarters; San Marco, Mercerie (near Rialto) and Campo San Giovanni e Paolo, near the hospital and Fondamenta Nove. They are known also for their wedding cake production and their fritelle (in Carnival Season). The picture is of the main location.

One of the busiest shops in all of Venice. It is situated in the heart of the city and among the absolute best for fritelle. It is in Dorodura , # 3764 near the Friar church.

 Here you must learn the art of sliding through the crowd, recognizing when you are being asked what you want, and when served. It is standing room only most of the time.

Pasticceria Dal Mas: It is near the train station on Lista de Spagna, and for me is the #1 for Fritelle. It has no sitting room, but the pastry and coffee is superb. It is a great place for a quick breakfast (colazione). And it’s strategic location makes it on my morning stops as it is near the boatstops, the train station and Piazzale Roma and for a quick afternoon macchiato.

Below are some terms you’l need and some rules to consider: 1) Pasticceria – where pastries are made – sometimes they also serve coffee
2) Paneficio – a bakery for bread, not to be confused with pastry.
3) Cioccolateria production of chocolate and candies.  4) Bar – Unlike other parts of the world, it’s the hub of society. For breakfast, snacks, afternoon coffee, and late night respite.
5) Al Banco or Alla Tavola – There are 2 prices, one for standing at the bar and the second for sitting and being served. (Read Below the Rules on Standing)

One Cappuccino:  un cappuccino
Two Cappuccino:  due cappuccini
Latte:  Caffe Latte
Cup of Coffee:  Caffe Americano
Expresso:  Un caffe
Fruit Juice:  Succo di  (whatever you want, arancia is orange juice)
A glass of cold/warm milk:  Un bicchiere di latto freddo/caldo

Drinking or Sipping. If you want to leisurely sip your coffee chat with your friends then you had best sit at a table (providing there is one). The counter is reserved for the quick espresso. Note that the Venetians who come in appear to be on the way to a urgent meeting and apparently they are already late.

Paying the Cashier: When you enter a shop, look around quickly. If you see the sign “Cassa” with a person manning this position, then you must order with this person, who yells over to the barista, pay and then proceed to the bar for your drink.

Backpacks: Take them off or you will land someones espresso on them, their friends making them even later for their important meeting and receive very stern looks if not a string of Italian which your phrase book never mentioned. 

Tolerance & Respect: In the last couple of years the cruise ships and tours have increased the number of tourist arriving daily to the city which has had a direct correlation to the decrease in tolerance by locals to what they perceive as rude inappropriate behavior and disrespect to the people who call Venice home and their beloved city.

This is just a short list of the hundreds of great places all around the city to get your coffee. The Bars have hot pastry early in the morning. But you must arrive early to get the best choices. They have small ovens and the pastry is delivered to them where they bake it and serve it to the Venetians who pop in for coffee.  If you have a favorite one, send us your suggestions and questions.


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