One Cup of Coffee (Then I’ll Go)

“Without my morning coffee I’m just like a dried up piece of roast goat”  – Johann Sebastian Bach, The Coffee Cantata

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Coffee is a way of life in Italy. Aside from the obvious caffeine hit, coffee bars offer an opportunity to gossip with your neighbours, nibble delicious sweet cakes, take a break from shopping, meet a friend or read the newspapers.

Spello is full of coffee bars. I don’t drink the stuff myself, but I am always happy to while away the hours with a cool glass of water and some pastacini.

The Bar Giordino has a beautiful terrace with views across mountains and valleys. We’ve been there once, sitting in the shade of its spreading trees. But there are 2 coffee bars we frequent much more often.

Entering Spello from the top of the town, the first bar you come across is the Tabaccheria Romani Fiorella.

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This bar is a few steps from our apartment, so it has been our favourite destination for an early morning drink with croissants or sweet cakes, or, on occasion, a cool glass of wine on a hot day after a long walk.

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The bar is run by 2 delightful ladies, sisters-in-law Fiorella and Daniella who are always smiling and welcoming. Our conversations are still interspersed with mime, but they have both been patient and helpful with our halting Italian.

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You can buy everything here: sandwiches, cigarettes, handbags, very nice wines, hand-crafted earrings and a ticket for the lottery to name but a few.

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A tiny terrace with a lovely view is perfect for a leisurely stop, but we prefer to be inside where the chattering of locals and tourists is at its best.

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Should we turn right out of our apartment, heading for the town centre, then we will often stop at Bar Tullia.

Spello: Cafe, Tulia

Tullia is well placed for people watching. It faces the main street, is next to a school and opposite the lovely facade of the church of San Lorenzo, so the clientele is a mixture of locals, tourists, mums and the occassional cleric. It’s another family affair, run by a sister and brother team.

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The cafe culture in Italy is embedded in its society. It’s not so difficult to sustain with a sunny climate. Those of us from more northern territories just have to seize the day!

“Chocolate, men, coffee – some things are better rich.”

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