I have a new cappuccino addiction.
At the corner of the Pantheon is a coffee shop, with only stand up counter service, called Tazza d’Oro. The place is filled with locals and tourists trying to edge their way in for the tiniest sliver of space at the counter.
The first time we walked in I was completely lost. People were seemingly just walking up to the counter and automatically getting served beautiful cappuccinos and decadent iced granitas. They barely exchanged words but the barista knew exactly what they wanted. I must have gawked for at least 5 minutes before I realized that people were exchanging slips of paper for the drinks. What is this magic paper and how can I get one?? We had not yet realized that in Italy it is common to pay money at a separate area than where you receive your food. When we finally figured it out and saddled up to the counter we were not disappointed.
This is seriously the BEST cappuccino I have ever had in my whole life. The smoothness of the espresso and the creaminess of the milk and froth were perfect. Not a hint of bitterness. Nam and Avinash got more decadent granitas and chocolate cream. Needless to say I have visited this place at least twice a day since we have been here and in a perfect world, would set up a cot outside its doors and consume nothing else in life but this wonderful new elixir I have discovered.
This is perhaps one of the most charming and beautiful cities I have ever seen. From the endless mazes of winding cobblestone alleys that have been leading us to new discoveries to the 2000 year old Pantheon where Avinash and I sat at the base of one of its pillars while enjoying our potato pizza- I am completely enchanted.
Rome, if I could kiss you twice on each cheek and follow with a wet one on the lips I would. You are classically beautiful, with rough edges and you seem to have an alluring dark side. Even though you are going to make me a caffeine junkie and fat on gelato I can’t blame you. All is good when you are falling in love…
**June 15- UPDATE**
Update- rather a confession. I found another coffee shop. Just behind the Pantheon in Piazza della Rotonda is a café called Sant’Eustachio. I thought I had sworn my allegiance to Tazza d’Oro after the first sip, but now I’m not sure. So, I have decided to enjoy a lovely cappuccino from both every day so I don’t have to choose. Although, I had a pang of guilt this morning when I went to Tazza d’Oro where I think they are recognizing me and the barista has decided to start making me foam art. He pointed it out to me and in Italian I think that he expressed that not everyone gets foam art in their cappuccinos. I’ve only been to Sant’Eustachio twice so far but I got a nod of recognition and the barista remembered that I wanted my cappuccino pre-sweetened.
Why choose? I’ll just let them both woo me…