It’s quite easy to find Caffé Ciao Presso in Nara, but it’s even easier to fall in love with their selection of coffee. Located just around the corner of JR Kintetsu-Nara Station, you can spot the place instantly on your way in or out. Yes, it is right next to the ticket gate, just before the South exit/entrance of the station.
The place is quite huge, with the usual two seating arrangements, indoor or outdoor. The place has a strong Italian influence injected onto its interior. Aside from their logo (which carries the famous tre colori of red, green and white), you may also find several pictures of Italy spread all over the place.
Caffé Ciao Presso offers quite an impressive selection of drinks and meals. Proudly using “Real espresso and cappuccino” as their tagline, you will not only find the famous espresso, cappuccino, latte macchiato and caffé macchiato, but also caffé shakerato and marocchino. Other than coffee, you are also welcome to try cioccolata (Italian for chocolate), flavored tea, soda, juice and ginger ale.
But I think what makes the place sound and feel even more Italian is how the employees communicate with each other. Whenever someone orders a drink or a cake, the cashier shouts it to the barista adding per favore at the end (Italian for please).
Caffé Ciao Presso is always packed during lunchtime, thanks to their mouthwatering cakes, bread and desserts. They also run a Lunchtime Value Plan which entitles you to a ¥50 discount, every day from 11 am to 2 pm. Simply choose a cake that has a discount sign written on a yellow sticker, and then pick a drink of your choice, that’s all!
What I like the most about this place, aside from their easy-to-love cup of coffee, is their very own creation called Cappuccino of Nara. This one is unlike any other cup of cappuccino, because it showcases the Great Buddha and a deer as the icons of Nara on top of your coffee. Such a very unique and clever idea! And the taste is just perfect. However, please bear in mind that this drink is only available at their Nara stores, so make sure that you order Cappuccino of Nara when you happen to be in the area. Un cappuccino, per favore!