A good espresso, or should I say, a great espresso is hard to come by stateside. It's a long way to travel for a cup of espresso or cappuccino, but worth the trip. I suggest you stay for a few days and really enjoy it!
A good cup of espresso should be enjoyed this way; stop and sip from a proper cup. Meaning, the cup is not made of paper, styrofoam or other disposable materials. Then participate in certain social etiquette. Don't drink it in a car or while walking on-the-go. Take a few minutes, sit or stand at the counter at the coffee bar. BTW, in Italy the price of an espresso and cappuccino is fixed no matter where you go- imagine that. You'll save a Euro or so for standing at the counter, but I enjoy to sit and take-in centuries old customs.
I've decided it's all the circumstances combined that make that cup taste so good; the list is long, so let's just say Romans know how to make a great cup. Everyday, when in Rome, I stop at Gargani's for double espresso and a sfogiatelle, my favorite Italian pastry and savored every moment. Can't wait to return. Tip: The cafe goes from empty to packed in minutes, so don't hesitate, just sit. Then just enjoy the food frenzy; waiters rushing, tables turning and piles of small plates. Anyway, here's where to go- when in Rome:
Via Lombardia, 15
00187 Roma (Lazio), Italy
images: George Hirsch