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Gran Caffe L’Aquila

Landmark award winning caffe, bar and restaurant featuring authentic Italian cuisine, wine, and cocktails from all 20 regions of Italy, plus regional weekly specials based on a unique Italian city!

From L’Aquila to Philadelphia….. April 6 2009 : The original Gran Caffe L’Aquila is destroyed in a Tragic Earthquake which destroyed the entire city of L’Aquila December 24 2014 : One of Italy’s most beloved landmark Caffe’s is resurrected in Philadelphia The original Gran Caffé L’Aquila was a landmark caffe located on the beautiful main square of L’Aquila, the capital of the Abruzzo region. ... Amongst other accolades, the Gran Caffe won the “Bar d”Italia 2007” award, naming it the top bar in Italy. It owed its success to several key factors: coffee roasted on premises by an award winning roaster & Italian coffee ambassador as well as spectacular Italian cocktails by him & his staff, & gelato by the future Gelato Champion of Italy Stefano Biasini, delicious Abruzzo small plates, and an elegant modern Italian design. When tragedy struck L’Aquila on April 6th 2009, the Gran Caffe L’Aquila, along with most of the city of L’Aquila, was destroyed by a devastating earthquake. The main square and most of the city were left in uninhabitable ruins. Spirit intact, Biasini quickly built a temporary outpost of the Gran Caffe on the periphery of the city as they waited for the landmark Piazza location to be repaired. It was at this temporary location where, two years later, he met Italian-American restaurateur Riccardo Longo. Longo was on a 52-city gastronomy and wine tour when he fortuitously bumped into Biasini. Longo could not believe that after touring the twenty regions of Italy, he had found the best gelato and coffee in Italy under one roof. After meeting with them to discuss their common passion for Italian culinary excellence, an immediate friendship was born. Biasini visited Longo several times and fell in love with the city of Philadelphia. During these visits an idea soon bloomed between them to bring their gifts together to reincarnate the Gran Caffe L’Aquila in Center City Philadelphia. The concept would be to bring a true Italian Caffe to the city of Philadelphia, complete with authentic cuisine, world class coffee, award winning gelato, as well as classic Italian cocktails, wines, and an Italian cultural school to expound Italian culinary & wine culture. While they discussed the project and began initial planning, Biasini continued to accrue accolades. In January 2012, Stefano Biasini won the prestigious “Gelato d’oro” competition and became the Gelato Champion of Italy by defeating the top gelato makers of Italy. One year later, as Captain of the Italian National Dessert Culinary Team, Biasini won the International Press World Championship and Gold medal for Best Gastronomic Gelato. In addition to those, he had already been established as one of Italy’s premier micro coffee roasters and an Ambassador of Italian coffee to the G8. After an incredible amount of planning and effort, their vision was realized in December 2014; the Gran Caffe L’Aquila had been reborn. In order to ensure its authenticity, each element of the restaurant was designed & hand-built in Italy by Italian Artisans and then shipped to the United States. The Italian craftsmanship is evident in every detail, ranging from the handmade tables and chairs to the custom-built walls, library, & labs. Even the Italian gelato & coffee roasting equipment has been imported to ensure an authentic Italian flavor. The Ground floor is a modern Italian “bar.” Italian espresso & pastries are featured in the morning, while paninis and small plates are available in the afternoon. When the lights go down in the evening, the space evolves into an Italian restaurant & wine bar. Wines by the glass from all 20 regions of Italy, Assaggi (tapas), Italian craft beer and classic cocktails all combine to create an authentic Italian experience. The second floor features a full-service Lunch and Dinner restaurant and bar with PLENTY of space for group events. Each week Riccardo Longo will be inviting all guests to accompany him on his travels through the 20 regions of Italy by recreating the recipes he has gathered from sources ranging from top chefs to knowledgeable Nonnas (grandmothers). Wine pairing for each city have been personally selected by Longo (11-time wine spectator award winner) based on years of travel & “research” throughout the Italian Peninsula. This weekly menu will also include an additional signature gastronomic gelato dish innovated by Chef Biasini featuring the signature ingredients of that week’s destination. The Mission of Gran Caffe L’Aquila is to delight our guests beyond their expectations through our collective passion for authentic Italian culinary excellence. Over the course of the next year, you will have the opportunity to learn about 52 different Italian cities. You will learn about the delicious cuisine, fine wine and culture of each city. We expect that you will take your education seriously and passionately. You will be ambassadors of Italian culture to all our customers, and we hope you will help all of us at the Gran Caffe L’Aquila share our passion with the city of Philadelphia

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  • Breakfast
  • Dinner
  • Late Night
  • Lunch
  • Reservation Suggested
  • Menu Price: $$ - Up to $20