The 5 Ultimate Spots to try the Best Coffee in Venice

Coffee is one of the most important aliments of Italian culture, completely entrenched in both the culinary customs and daily lifestyle of modern Italians. Like so many other gastronomic mainstays, it made its first appearance in Europe passing through the gates of Venice where it has taken a stronghold. Today we share our favorite spots to try the best coffee in Venice.  

A person pours milk foam on coffee to make cappuccino art
Get ready to dive into Venice’s outstanding coffee scene at the best coffee shops in the city. Photo credit: Chevanon Photography

The first Italian coffee house opened in Venice in 1683 at Procuratie Nuove located on the southern side of Saint Mark square. The cafe’s popularity swept the city, and it immediately became a venue for social and political gatherings. The demand was so vigorous that it caught the eye of local merchants who followed suit and opened a total of 206 coffee shops in Venice by 1759.

Today, coffee remains an important part of Venetian cultural pride. So, what are the best places to enjoy high-quality coffee in Venice?

This article is dedicated to coffee lovers from all over the world who follow the centennial tradition of arriving in Venice to search for the best coffee beans the city has to offer.

Caffè Girani 

Caffè Girani is the oldest boutique coffee roaster still active in Venice. It was founded in 1928 by Giuseppe Girani, a famous coach of the Venice football team. The shop, filled with wonderful vintage photos and moka of yesteryear, is a must for refined clientele and coffee connoisseurs. Here you can purchase hand-crafted blends as well as artisanal equipment to prepare your exceptional coffee at home. 

The beans at Caffè Girani mainly come from volcanic and highland soils of Central American plantations. The coffee is then hand-roasted at a lower temperature, with a rare post-World War II machine, which enhances the floral and fruity aromas while limiting acidity.

Girani’s proudest assets are the blends, or rather their “recipes” with which the grounds of the different coffee varieties are combined. The most famous are the Fassina, also known as Super Dolce, made from 9 of the finest Arabica varieties. The Casanova gourmet is based on a precious Puerto Rico quality. And our personal favorite here is the aromatic Rosina, which makes an extra-strong coffee, and is used as a custom blend in some of the best restaurants in town.

By reservation only, it is also possible to attend a roasting demonstration with a tasting of the various blends in the roasting laboratory located at the back of the store.

coffee roaster
With almost 100 years of history, Caffè Girani is a local coffee institution. Photo credit: Juan Pablo Serrano Arenas

Caffè Florian 

Caffè Florian is a 300-year-old coffeehouse located in San Mark square, making it the oldest coffeehouse in Italy. The venue hasn’t changed since its foundation in 1720 keeping, in decor and style, all the charm of the historic eighteenth-century café. 

Local customers of Café Florian know that prices change considerably whether you order at the counter or table, so much so that the café has two different menus. For example, the price of an espresso at the counter is €3.50, while it doubles at the table. However, there is a special pleasure in enjoying a coffee served on a silver tray while sitting in St. Mark’s Square, with an orchestra playing in front of us. That’s the experience of a coffee at Florian’s, whose blend is 100% Arabica. 

Insider tip:  During Carnival, the coffee shop becomes the preferred venue of Venetian Carnival associations, which use it to meet here every day dressed in their historical costumes. Finding a free table is impossible but moving around the café looking for it is a real pleasure and a leap back in time.

elegant dining space
Caffè Florian has several dining rooms with different themes including this Chinese hall. Photo credit: Wikimedia Commons

Torrefazione Cannaregio

Torrefazione Cannaregio is a coffee bean roaster and coffee seller since 1930. Its new location on Ormesini Canal makes it a perfect spot to enjoy your coffee in a typical Venetian atmosphere. The cafeteria is the result of a skillful restoration that combines contemporary architectural style in a traditional Venetian warehouse setting. 

Torrefazione Cannaregio (Fondamenta dei Ormesini, 2804) offers blends coming from all over the world including India, Guatemala, Brazil, Ethiopia, and Colombia. While their flagship product is Café Remer, a masterful combination of eight different qualities of Arabica. 

The staff here is very knowledgeable and skilled in the preparation of several coffee options, from the classic Italian espresso to the Australian flat white.  Our suggestion here is to order the cold and foamy scecherato – a perfect choice for the summer season. 

shakerato coffee in wine glass
Scecherato also known as shakerato is the ultimate summer coffee drink. Photo credit: Luigi Anzivino

Illy Caffè Giardini Reali

Illy is one of the biggest Italian coffee companies that provide quality coffee in several shops along the whole peninsula and abroad. The brand, founded in Trieste in 1933, quickly became for everybody synonymous with Italian quality, high expertise, and passion for coffee making. 

Illy inaugurated its Venetian store in the magnificent venue of the historical greenhouse at the Monumental Complex of the Royal Gardens, a stone’s throw from St. Mark’s Square. The venue is simply outstanding, and the always excellent Illy coffee can be enjoyed both indoors and outdoors throughout the day. You can also accompany your coffee with classic, fresh Italian dishes from breakfast to dinner. Our advice for a perfect morning start is an espresso lungo at one of the open-air tables followed by a typical Venetian brioche or a tramezzino. 

triangle sandwiches
Tramezzino are popular triangle-shaped sandwiches with different fillings. Photo credit: PxHere

Pasticceria Ponte Del Lovo

The café-pastry shop at Ponte del Lovo was a historic venue for the dissemination of the anti-fascist press in Venice. Venetian antifascists used to gather in Tiziano Inguanotto’s historic café to unite with each other, retrieve leaflets to distribute in the city, as well as gather weapons to take to fellow partisans in the nearby mountains.

Today, despite a showcase full of cannoli and sweets of all kinds, café del Lovo certainly cannot be mentioned for the quality of its pastries. We recommend ignoring the treats and, instead, focusing on the incredibly high-quality coffee, which is the superior choice at this cafe. Here you can enjoy an excellent macchiatone, a typical Venetian coffee somewhere between a macchiato and a cappuccino.

The Pasticceria Ponte del Lovo (Calle del Lovo, 4760) is also one of the few cafeterias in Venice where it is possible to buy whole and grounded coffee beans, which is the main draw for local Venetians.