Recently, a hidden cafe is newly opened on Fraser Street – Eclettico Art & Coffee. It combines art and coffee together, which brings customers a unique experience as if they are in Italy. When I first entered the cafe, I was attracted by the rustic red wall, with a copper Italian coffee machine at the counter. It has a chic, retro design. The cafe is attached with a small art museum at the back, where drawings, all drawn by the owner, are hung on the wall. It is also where the owner teaches water-coloring classes. In addition to the artistic ambiance, there is a piano at the front for a pianist comes every weekend to perform live music.
I was invited to a media tasting, and I tried few items on the menu, including Nutellino, Torroncini, and the Charcuterie Board, paired with a non-alcoholic drink, Bacio Rosa. Through the tasting, I can feel how passionate the owner is with the coffee, the source and the quality of ingredients, and the Italian culture.
Nutella originates from Italy, and I think a cup of Nutellino best represents the Italian coffee culture.; a shot of espresso brewed with Italian coffee beans and an Italian coffee machine (a 1950 Victoria Arduino), stirred in with hot milk and a big spoon of Nutella. It may sound simple, yet the owner puts much effort in choosing the perfect coffee beans to match most Canadians’ palette while staying true to the Italian culture. The espresso is smooth, and the amount of Nutella is just right to give a hint of sweetness to the coffee. Make sure to stir it before drinking it!
I chose Torroncini to pair with the Nutellino because I have never tried such Italian pastry. Though it has the shape of biscotti, it has a softer texture, just like a butter cookie. The cookie layer is covered with almonds and wrapped around the chocolate flavored filling. It is on a buttery and heavier side, but I enjoy it as a stir stick to dip into my nutellino.
Charcuterie Board is a classic, and most restaurants now serve them as a happy hour or late-night snack. I recommend sharing this board with a friend or two. The board comes with balsamic onion, pesto stuffed olives, and Sicilian mixed olives as antipasti. For the meat, it serves with Genoa salami and prosciutto crudo di Parma from Italy. You may then choose your choice of hard cheese: Toma Piemontese DOP, San Pio Al Vino Bianco – both from Italy, or Manchego Cheese DOP (12 months) from Spain. As for the soft cheese, it comes with a local Triple Creme Brie. The charcuterie board is accompanied by a selection of grissini and fruits. The owner recommends the San Pio Al Vino Bianco for the hard cheese, and it is a white-wine infused cheese. It has a hint of mild, fruity flavor to it – pair surprisingly well with the prosciutto.
My media tasting finished off with Bacio Rosa, a non-alcoholic drink that tastes like wine. It is made with 100% natural Italian lemonade and wild berry puree. I really enjoy the drink, because it is refreshing and light. The acidity and sweetness pairs really well with the charcuterie board. It is highly recommended for people who want something different than regular espresso, for the evening!
The idea of combining art, music, and coffee is quite unique in Vancouver. With conversations with the owner, I can see how passionate he is for maintaining high quality of the ingredients while providing a reasonable price to his customers. My favourite is definitely the charcuterie board, and I instantly fell in love with the white-wine infused cheese. I would definitely return to try more of the items on the menu!
Taste : 4/5 • Service: N/A • Ambiance: 3.5/5 • Quality-Price: 4/5/5
|Eclettico Art & Coffee | Instagram | Facebook|
|Address: 4172 Fraser Street, Vancouver, BC|
|Hours: Mon: Closed | Tue to Sun: 10 am to 8 pm|
Disclosure: Media Tasting