Piazza della Repubblica is one of the focal points of Florence. Over the centuries, it has changed its face many times, yet in our days it has preserved an elegant, sophisticated nineteenth-century atmosphere that makes it one of the favorite locations (as well as an obligatory stop) for all those who visit the city. On the square there is a cafe no less historic than all the other monuments, frequented in the past days by illustrious patrons like D’Annunzio, Papini, Montale, Saba and Pratolini. We’re talking about Caffè Paszkowski.
Opened in 1846, with the name of Caffè Centrale, Paszkowski assumed its current name only in 1903, when it was acquired by the company Carlo Paszkowski & C., one of the oldest beer brands in Tuscany, which transformed it into a concert coffee , enlivening the Florentine evenings for many years until today. In the evening, we dressed well, went to coffee and listened to live music while sipping drinks with much less exotic and complicated names than we sip today. A pleasure that, fortunately, has not changed.
Tradition doen’t age at the Paszkowski, on the contrary, it remains young without altering itself. The main room of the cafe is that of the tea room, a large hall decorated, on the bottom, by a trompe-l’œil frescoed by Carlo Capanni, right next to the grand piano where live bands perform. The room still retains the original furnishings of the past and is one of the largest in all of Florence.
The cafe is a perfect destination for every hour of the day. His highlight is obviously the area of the classic coffee shop, of the teas and of the infusions and above all of the pastry, always fresh. But there is no lack of substantial continental breakfasts, options for an aperitif, a snack and also for lunch and dinner with a menu that sums up all the great classics of Italian tradition with pasta and excellent second courses, declined in gluten-free version and with vegetarian options .
The key to success seems to be twofold: quality and simplicity. A creed to which Paszkowski has adhered for all the years of his long life. A lunch, a breakfast or even a simple coffee at the counter with a pastry will make you feel fully immersed in the spirit of Florentine elegance. A stop that you can’t definitely miss.