Quadrilatero Romano is one of the most cheerful neighborhoods in Turin, especially during week nights, when the numerous students in town go out for happy hour. But alongside these enthusiastic revelers, there are many quieter locals populating the hidden bars between the streets; we list some great spots to join them in.
The story of this little old café dates back to the eighteenth century; it has been in place since then and it’s said that Camillo Benso of Cavour, the Prime Minister responsible of Italy’s unification, came here to have the famous bicerin, which is still made with the same recipe. Caffè Al Bicerin is decorated with antique furnishing; there may not be much room between the old furnishings, but a visit is nonetheless a must for anyone who wants to savor a bit of tradition. Caffè Al Bicerin, piazza della Consolata 5, Turin, Italy, +39 011 436 9325
Baratti e Milano features a large, elegant room decorated with huge chandeliers, where customers can sit on antique chairs at marble tables while enjoying one of the many teas on the menu or a traditional bicerin, which here is still made with the original recipe too; hot chocolate at the base, a shot of espresso and cappuccino foam to finish off. Baratti e Milano, piazza Castello 27/29, Turin, Italy, +39 011 440 7138
Tisaneria della Consolata is a peculiar little place; a good mixture of a tea room and a torteria done in an old-style atmosphere. Stepping in, it looks like you’ve entered an old apothecary shop, with big vases full of herbs and tea leaves that the owner is going mix into making the several herbal teas lining the walls. But it’s not just beverages that are on offer here, the alchemical mixtures on the menu claim to heal a whole host of ailments, from from insomnia to stomach aches.
Land is a great place to have a drink on a night out with friends. It features several rooms so it can accommodate a fair number of customers, who can find a place on comfortable couches, as well as on chairs and in hidden alcoves about the place. The low lighting illuminates the peculiar artworks on the walls, while Land also features a wide variety of unusual liquors and hot teas, which are served with cookies. Land, via Santa Chiara 20/d, Turin, Italy
Hafa looks exactly how you’d expect a Moroccan café to look after seeing all the movies; think Rick’s gin joint in Casablanca. Customers feel welcome and cozy in the warm space complete with orange walls and ethnic furnishing, while they can enjoy either traditional Moroccan beverages such as the mint tea, or high-quality cocktails and snacks such as cookies and granola yoghurt. Hafa, via Sant’Agostino 23/c,10122 Turin, Italy, +39 011 436 7091
This huge organic bar welcomes customers looking for healthy snacks and drinks in a modern environment. Exki works like a self-service place; customers pick and grab their own food from the fridge or the cake table and while paying they can order hot beverages. Exki mixes an American-style coffee shop with the Italian tradition of spending a lot of time at the table. Exki, via Pietro Micca 2, Turin, Italy, +39 011 1970 0819
Just a few blocks from the Porta Palazzo market, following the piazza main street, via Milano, this cozy cafe is easily reachable. It tends to get lost among the shops all around it but the eye can’t possibly miss the cakes displayed in the window, not to mention the regular crowd of local enjoying delicious slices at the bar. Head in, grab an espresso and sample some fine in-house cake creations.
It’s already been mentioned how this area is constantly populated by students of all kinds. And this American-style coffee shop attracts many of them. It is not unusual at Buster’s to find study groups reuniting to work while eating donuts, next to high school goers gossiping in front of an American coffee. It’s not the place to relax in silence, but it’s great for spending a free afternoon of shopping among chatty friends and locals Buster’s Coffee, via delle Orfane 2, Turin, Italy, +39 0115840242
The area around the Porta Palazzo market was once a very rich neighborhood, and the many historic cafes still stand as testimony to its past glories. One of those old cafes is the Cremolese. Cremolese features traditional Piedmontese beverages and treats, as well as Sicilian specialities, along with ice-cream and chocolates of all kinds. Customers can accommodate in the dehor to have a nice view over the piazza. Cremolese, Via Milano 11/b, Turin, Italy, +39 011 1987 6021
The excellent croissants served at Torrefazione Moderna make it the ideal place for breakfast, and since everybody knows it, customers should be prepared to wait in a little but quick line in order to taste them. The delicious pastries are accompanied by great coffee and a wide selection of teas, which are also available for purchase to take home. Torrefazione Moderna, via Corte d’Appello 2, Turin, Italy, +39 011 436 4973