Caffè Florian, located in the heart of St. Mark’s Square (Piazza San Marco), is one of the oldest and most famous coffeehouses in Venice, Italy, with a rich and storied history dating back to the 18th century.
The cafe was founded in 1720 by Floriano Francesconi, hence its name. It was originally known as “Alla Venezia Trionfante” but later came to be named after its founder.
I ordered the AMERICANO FLORIAN (Aperitivo Rosso, Carpano classico, seltz) and the TOAST CLASSICO (Prosciutto cotto, formaggio e salsa Florian Ham, cheese and Florian sauce).
Sitting in the square after the rather comprehensive “Venice: Highlights Tour, St. Mark’s Basilica & Doge’s Palace” tour, I wanted to relax – but couldn’t.
I saw a man propose to his partner in the grand magnificence of St. Mark’s Square. But, my happiness was pierced like a knife, when I saw an opportunistic flower vendor immediately begin harassing him to purchase the rest of his batch of flowers for his new bride to be. And then, haggle him for the price.
It was distasteful.
Next, upon wanting to pay, I tried to direct our server that we wanted to put half on my card and half in cash. He looked annoyed – muttered some bullshit under his breath – and then charged the full amount to my card. Then, he literally scurried away in a huff.
For the price and 22% musician surcharge along with the 10% tourist surcharge, you can do better.
Consequently, my friend and I had to argue with the service staff at Caffè Florian to get change to break down a 50 Euro bill. Numerous waiters claimed to not have change and then pointed her to someone else.. until I cut the shit and asked a younger waiter directly, in a firm manner.
Sometimes, it’s the little things that make a world of difference.
In my honest opinion, the service and quality of Gran Caffe Lavena far outshines Caffe Florian. Plus, in the afternoon, the aggressive bird situation – of which you can’t even eat your food in peace without birds attempting to dive bomb and snatch food away – is a mood killer.
Again – for the price and 22% musician surcharge along with the 10% tourist surcharge, you can do better.
Piazza San Marco, 57
30124, Venice Italy