Thursday, May 5, 2011

Parana Caffé (Rome, Italy) - ♕♕♕♕

Caffe Parana is one of the more modernist Italian Caffe’s I’ve encountered during this trip.  I walked in here based purely on instinct rather than by prior research, but it turned out to be one of the best recommended caffes in town (like, after I finally started researching now online!).   Founded by the Giannelli family in 1960, they started off being an Artisan roaster who independently roasts their own batches of coffee, but as time went on have grown in size and supplies to many café/caffé’s not just within Italy, but all over the world at a commercial scale.  I have nothing against commercial sized operators and roasters at all, as long as they’re not deliberately and boringly geared  towards commercialized flavours trying to appeal to caffeine addicts rather that caffe drinkers.  Here across from the Termini Station, this branch of Parana Caffe uses the Parana Italiano blend made from 100% Arabica beans, a rare occurrence in this part of Italy where at least a small portion of Robusta input is appreciated to give it body..  


Not very old-school from the looks of it…

Display Counter -
Filled with savoury items and various sweets options.  Very tempting!

Cappuccino -
One often hear from hearsay in local HK cafes that traditional Cappuccino in Europe is meant to be rather foamy rather than made with micro-foam (known as dry Cappuccino ‘Scuro’). It has happened a couple of times and one wonders whether these local baristi have ever drank coffee in Europe before, seriously, and no offence intended.   Wet Cappuccino ‘Chiaro’ Supporters too used to their Synesso machines however will hardly enjoy this style.    I like this dryer type too, and the finer detail lies in the milk foam’s stretching itself.   As I’ve mentioned repeatedly, even if u try to emulate the older European style of foamier dry cappuccino, please at least make sure the flat milk and the foam above could still bind together somehow.  Not stratified into a thinnish flat thin milk sinking at the bottom, but overly bubbly floating on the top.  Italy everywhere do their ‘Scuro style’ pretty well, with a thickish foam but not aerated bubbly.  I’m yet to see anyone succeed in replicating this locally, weird but true!   ~  7/10

Espresso Corretto -
A favourite drink of mine:   a mixture between an alcoholic Grappa shot and a shot of single Espresso.  Upon showing my paid receipt to the barista before my drink, the barista seemed shocked and asked me twice whether this is what I was really after and whether I know what this even was, in a friendly way!   I told him rest assure I need the booze!  And he happily went away making one for me.   This is a very strong liqueur coffee even compared to the ones infused with vodka, bailey’s or amaretto and the likes.  But ultimately enjoyable.  Obviously with the presence of a strong alcohol, the crema seemed a little strange in it’s appearance due to that and dilution.  Good stuff… but very strong!     ~  8/10

Not bad at all,
May be it was never intended to be up to 2011 International standards of 3rd Waver coffee, but that’s probably their aim, as long as they’re satisfied with what they provide to customers!



Price:  €5 Per Person
Coffee Score: ★★★★☆☆

Address: Piazza dei Cinquecento 40, Rome 00185, Italy
Ph: 06-4883885

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