We rested and did errands today:
- Laundry in the apartment – every time we do laundry in a different apartment we have to learn how to use the washing machine. Fortunately, we’ve done this enough times without any manual, we were able to get our clothes washed in the machine with only Italian labels.
- Bankomat (e.g. ATM) for more Euros – The first Bankomat on the street did not accept our bank card. The second try worked and was in an enclosed entrance to a bank and we were out of the street. A much safer location and we could see the display much better.
- Gelato at Frigidarium – One of the best artigianale gelatos in Rome. The line can be extremely long. We had a shorter line. Timing is everything.
- da Tonino – simple, cheap, and tasty pasta very close to our apartment. We arrived at 7:00 PM when it opened and got the first table. By 7:15 PM, the restaurant was full.
- Passeggiata – We walk took us through Piazza Navona (always interesting at night) and Piazza della Rotondo (Pantheon and the cousins favorite bar, Tempio Bar) to San Eustachio for a Shakerato coffee. A wonderful way to end the day.
Caffè Shakerato (Serves 1)
Once the real Roman heat hits in the summer, the last thing I want is hot coffee. Don’t get me wrong. I still need my caffeine more than ever. But the hot part—and even the milk part—is just too much when the thermometer nears 100°F. My go-to treat is of course a granita di caffè. But it is a treat; more of a dessert than a post-meal pick-me-up. So my daily post-lunch hit becomes a caffè shakerato. I’m not sure when this drink started turning up in Italian bars. I suspect it migrated from Greece, where Nescafé is added to ice and water and then shaken to create a luscious and sweet version of iced coffee.
The Italian shakerato is a much more minimal and intense affair. A freshly pulled espresso, poured in a cocktail shaker with a bit of sugar. Abundant ice, a thirty-second hard shake. and then poured ever so elegantly into a stemmed glass—perfect! A shakerato is always served in a stemmed glass. A champagne flute will do, but I also love to use a martini glass. All very elegant, very cool, and enough caffeine to get me through the few hours left to a sultry Roman workday.
- 1 demitasse cup
- freshly brewed espresso
- ½ to 1 teaspoon sugar
It’s best to shake 1 cup at a time, so things don’t get too watered down from the ice melting in the warm coffee. Brew the espresso, using your favorite home method, and measure out 1 small cup (about ¼ cup). While still hot, add the sugar and stir to dissolve. Keep stirring so that the coffee cools off a bit. Note that the sugar actually plays a role here not only in sweetening the drink, but also in creating a creamy foam. Pour into a shaker and add LOTS of ice. Close and shake vigorously for 30 seconds. Strain into a chilled, stemmed glass. I like a martini glass, but a flute works well, too.