The Caffè Pedrocchi is one of the most famous and important historical cafés in Europe. Located in the city center of Padua, it houses a museum dedicated to the Risorgimento, an era that saw the theater of the student movements of 1848.
Caffè Pedrocchi History
As in Venice, also in Padua between the end of the eighteenth and the early nineteenth century the tradition of coffee as a bourgeois circle and meeting place was affirmed and in this context, the intuition of Antonio Pedrocchi, which in 1816, was added inherited the activity of his father, a bergamasco coffee maker, he commissioned the famous Venetian architect Giuseppe Jappelli to enlarge the small one he owned.
Completed in 1831, the building reflects all the inspiration and eclecticism of Jappelli and his secular-enlightenment vision of society: despite the difficulties in having to draw on an asymmetric and irregular plant, the result was a unitary structure in its neoclassical style . In 1839 it was then added the body in neo-Gothic style - the "Pedrocchino" - intended to accommodate the pastry and in subsequent years further expanded with the addition of the upper floors.
Each of the latter, as provided by the taste of the era, was decorated in a different style inspired by styles of the past: we find the Etruscan room, the Roman hall, the Greek room, the Egyptian room, the Moorish hall, the Renaissance and the Napoleonic room, dedicated to Gioacchino Rossini, where stuccos, bows and curtains allow a dip back in time bringing the visitor in full nineteenth century.
The Pedrocchi, (also called "coffee without doors" since 1916 open day and night), thanks to its conscious positioning in the center near the university's historic headquarters, soon became the prestigious meeting of academics, intellectuals, writers, artists and students from all over Padua. Some plaques recall the names of some of the illustrious visitors: Gabriele D'Annunzio, Ippolito Nievo, Eleonora Duse, Filippo Tommaso Marinetti and Sthendal who praised the marvels of the Pedrocchio zabaione of which he was particularly fond.
The history of the Pedrocchi is also notoriously linked to the Risorgimento student riots: February 8, 1848 the building was in fact the scene of clashes that led young patriots to rebel against the Austrian rulers and in the famous Sala Bianca are still present signs of the Austrian bullets shoot during the clashes.
Owned by the Municipality of Padua since 1891, the Caffè hosts the "Museum of the Risorgimento and of the Contemporary Age" on the main floor of the structure and still today welcomes visitors who can relive the atmosphere of the past and taste the delights of the café. of pastry in what is one of the symbols of the city.