Coffee in Venice has very ancient origins, the ones that made it so famous and known all over the world.Roasting, grinding, extraction of the liquid and the various ways of serving it. Over the centuries coffee has notoriously become a pleasant ritual, an opportunity to meet and an increasingly widespread need among peoples. The Venetian Carlo Goldoni in ”The Persian Bride” in 1753 recommended to ”use it therefore it is convenient to freshly grind it/ warm and dry place with jealousy watched”. Today it has become the Espresso that most of us love, known throughout the world as a symbol of the excellence of Italian coffee, an expression of the culture of an entire nation, so much so that it is among the candidates as a UNESCO Intangible Cultural Heritage of Humanity.
But which is the most ancient coffee?
After the conquest of Yemen, in 1500, the Ottoman Turks learned the art of coffee, enhancing its purity, without aromas or spices used by the Arabs. Some emissaries of the Sultan, fascinated by the qualities of the infusion, decided to make it known at the palace in Istanbul: it was a great success.
Thus opened the season of coffee lounges and the birth of the Turkish kahvesi, the Turkish coffee.
At that time the Venetians, thanks to trade with the Orient and especially with the Ottomans, got to know the kahvehane (coffee shops), places that in Turkey were used to relax, laze and converse. The Venetians decided that in addition to spices, they would also import coffee into Venice.
When exactly did coffee arrive in Venice?
The first news dates back to 1573, when the ambassador Costantino Garzoni reported to the Venetian senators that the Ottomans often drank this drink. At the beginning of 1600 the coffee in Venice began to sell the apothecaries as a medicine and was available at a high price. Some decades later, an ordinance favored its deposit and trade at the Fondaco dei Tedeschi and the Riva degli Schiavoni. Its diffusion was widespread thanks to the peddlers, who began to sell it instead of Malvasia wine, then once regulated by the Republic, the opening of coffee shops proliferated.