#This is one of the most legendary and open-minded café-bars of the Barrio del Carmen. It is also said to be the first one that turned the area from a no-go zone in the late ‘70s/early1980s to the highly popular & buzzing centro histórico of today.
La Transición, as it was known, was a time of liberty and real change in Spain and ‘Cafetin’ has been an artistic hangout for bohemians, painters, writers, locals of the barrio & visitors for many years.
The interior has a chic ‘Cabaret 1930s’ style, which in Spanish translates as ‘Revista Musical’, reflecting that theatrical & progressive period in Spain’s past. Dig the violet walls and art exhibitions by local artists. There is a relaxing terraza outside with a beautiful view of the old centre, great for soaking up the sunshine with a newspaper & a beer and good for people watching too. Owner Juan is the kind & warm host who runs this famous café-bar day to day. He is well travelled and a talented fashion designer & pianist and he has crafted this place with care and detail. It is clear that he cares for his customers.
You can browse their ample menu for homemade cocktails in large glasses including Mojito, Piña Colada and Margarita for 6€. There are some excellent wines including ‘Arnum Gran Reserva’, which is served at 3.50€ a glass and these are served with traditional Valencian homemade ‘Rubio’ crisps. You will find red & white wines and cavas too. Check out their excellent ‘Agua de Valencia’ (vodka, champagne, natural orange juice, gin), which is Valencia’s world famous cocktail par excellence. We enjoyed a refreshing Gin’n’Tonic at the bar during our last visit and they have a fair range of ginebras, including Hendricks, Beefeater, Premium, Seagram’s and Valencian brand Gin Mare too. Yes, they do great sangria too!
Coffee lovers should take note that they serve the excellent local café ‘Camillo’, meaning your experience here really is as Valencian as can be. You can also savour Cappuccino, Americano, Café con leche and their Carajillo (coffee with cognac), which is said to be their most popular! Tea lovers are in for a treat as you will find a wide range of tés, including Black, Green, White and Red tea choices and relaxing infusions like Rooibos Canela Naranja and Hibisco Egipto. You won’t go hungry here, as you can enjoy generous tapas, fresh from the Mercado Central, including Ham, Cheese, Anchovies choices (4€-5€) with lovely bread that is ‘pan de pueblo’.
The music soundtrack is often Soul & Jazz and sometimes there are live piano sessions too…often with classical music. The age range is from twenty to sixtysomethings; depending on the time of the day and night. ‘Cafetín’ is a classic Valencian bar in the heart of the old town with a rich history and open to everyone. An essential part of the chill out scene!
Report by ’24/7 Valencia’ team
Article copyright 24/7 Valencia
Plaza San Jaume, 2
Movil: 652 38 32 28
Open everyday from 12pm to 01.30am