How Not To Lose weight – Aperitivi at Caffè Venezia

There’s no more free lunch they say, but are they right?

Today Italy celebrates its 150 year anniversary as a unified nation. So everyone had a day off. This weeks forecast of week of constant rain was wrong for the first half of the day at least, so the four of us walked down town to look for an Italian flag.

And of course, around lunchtime, we got hungry. But not enough for dinner. So we decided to toast in Unity Day at Caffè Venezia.

Caffè Venezia prosecco cocktail

I first heard about Pescara’s Caffè Venezia in the months after l’Aquila’s earthquake. It was late April 2009 and tens of thousands of us were dazed April guests in summer hotels and apartments up and down the Adriatic. Our hotel-refuge, “Nel Pineto” was in Montesilvano, a northern suburb of Pescara separated from the sea by a sandy strip shaded by centuries old pine trees. It was much better than the tent cities our former neighbors were enduring back home but, as anyone who has ever visited a major summer sea and sand tourist stop in winter can tell you, it can feel pretty isolated. Evening visits to modern downtown Pescara (Abruzzo’s largest city) was the closest escape from the lobby we had.

Caffè Venezia snackplate

During our first weeks there the legend of the aperitivo at Caffè Venezia had already started to spread, at least in our hotel. And there was one reason – the snack plate. When you’ve been shaken, getting a huge plate of pizza and fried snacks with your drinks can feel like fresh water after a dry desert trek.

Caffè Venezia and Love

Bar Venezia is the city’s downtown food service juggernaut (steamroller). Other places may be cozier, closer to the sea, serve more creative food and cocktails or have a better wine list. But the Venezia wins in size and scope while somehow also being good. Nothing amazing, just good. On the inside there’s a pastry shop with amazing ice cream and chocolates as well, it also has pizzas by the slice and a cafeteria serving local dishes and seafood enticing enough to make me hungry while walking through on a full stomach

Caffè Venezia aftermath

I still, however, have not yet gone beyond eating and drinking what makes it to the sea of tables outside. The cocktail list is long but I usually end up with the fruity house cocktail with a dash or prosecco or an Aperol spritz, but my main goal, like that of my post-earthquake companions almost two years ago, is the complimentary food plate. A mountain of pizzette, miniature panzerotti (little deep fried pizza pockets) and a dozen other fried and oven-baked delights. Not good for the waistline, but comforting.

Work and parenting make my pre- lunch or dinner aperitivo escapes few and far between (Although my teenage daughters do agree to a non-alcoholic escape with there dad from time to time).

But it at least when we want to celebrate after a walk to downtown Pescara we know where we can sit oustide all year round and toast the day.

Pescara’s Caffè Venezia

Caffè Venezia, Pescara

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10 responses to “How Not To Lose weight – Aperitivi at Caffè Venezia

  1. Your posts have confirmed something I’ve been thinking about lately. I’ve neglected Pescara. Apart from visiting museums I now have a must taste list that is down to you. I just don’t know if I’ll be up for it all in one day.

    So far I have cocktails at Caffè Venezia, pizzette at Trieste and more pizzette at Pizza Express on Viale Bovio.

    Can man live on cocktails and pizzette alone?

  2. No, you have to ad arrosticini to the mix!
    Abruzzo is famous for arrosticini (mini grilled mutton skewers) but Montesilvano and Pescara are among the most famous places for them.
    Also, like anyplace along the sea the seafood can be quite good. I’ll try to get the names of a few family or cooperative run places that are tied to specific boats.

  3. Pescara in itself is not the choicest place to visit (but it is a good base camp), unless you want a sand vacation with small kids. But it is a wonderfully pleasent and comfortable place to live in. And with a major rail, an international airporta and being on the intersection of two highways, it’s connected.

  4. It seems you’ve found a wonderful spot to sit and sip and watch the world go by. I’m so glad you visited my blog because it gave me the opportunity to find yours. I hope you have a great day. Blessings…Mary

  5. Sounds like a great place to hang out!

  6. Holy mackerel, I needa go there!

  7. Looking so yummy!
    Veracious is also a source which offers best Italian foods in Italy. keep try.

  8. clean plate club, eh? nicely done. 🙂

  9. buon appetito e piatto pulito!
    (bon apetit and clean plates!)
    it’s what we tell kids here before digging in at dinner

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