If you want to experience authentic Venetian lifestyle, Caffé del Doge on University Avenue in downtown Palo Alto is a place to be. Three months after its grand opening, Caffé del Doge has not only brought the culinary traditions of Venice, but also a quality lifestyle to Palo Alto.
When I first visited Caffé del Doge, I was immediately attracted by its exquisite art deco with an European flavor. The romantic Italian music mixed with smooth Jazz made me feel relaxing and reviving. With the posters of Venice and art of coffee-making on the wall, the place was filled with charming ambience. I instantly fell in love with it!
Being a non-expert coffee drinker, I ordered “decaf mocha” by default. The barrista, who is from Venice and spoke with strong Italian accent, said to me amusingly: “mocha is an American thing.” It is not even on the menu. Nevertheless, he made me a cup of mocha using his artisan methods. I had never seen such an intricate stir of chocolate and deliberate pouring of milk into coffee before! And, I was amazingly enchanted by the richness of aroma and unparallel taste of the mocha.
This experience led me venturing into a world of espresso. Going through Caffé del Doge’s coffee menu was quite an education. I learned different varieties of coffee beans and featured local and imported organic products. Not only that, I learned the art of drinking coffee and indulged in rich espresso drinks that I had never tasted elsewhere.
Among many exotic drinks, my favorite is Cremino, a Caffé del Doge original with a layer of vanilla or chocolate followed by a shot of espresso and finished off with light whipped cream. Another absolute indulging drink is Giacometto. It’s an espresso served in a martini cup lined with chocolate hazelnut-spread, topped with a dusting of cocoa and ground hazelnuts. It creates a taste that is so remarkably unique and you would never want to have coffee anywhere else any more!
According to Bernardo della Mea, Caffé del Doge principal, the mission of Caffé del Doge is to introduce the Venetian tradition to America. Caffé del Doge in Palo Alto is the first and only Venetian coffee bar opened in the United States. Recently named as one of the best Café in Italy, the Caffé del Doge is described as a place where “coffee is worshiped with reverence joy.”
Sitting in the upstairs of the Caffé del Doge and sipping a cup of decorated cappuccino prepared with unique style and elegant design, I taste “a taste for good life.”