A gem of a place in the heart of the old quarter, in the space formed by Piazza Soziglia and Piazza Campetto, this shop was opened almost by chance in 1828 by the four Klainguti brothers, Swiss confectioners from Pontresina who came to Genoa intending to migrate to America in search of fortune. For some reason their voyage was delayed and they ended up practising their trade in this shop, today managed by the Ubaldi family, which takes us back in time to the marvellous years of the initial architectural changes associated with 19th century urbanisation. The entrance, windows and sign in Gothic lettering have been modified slightly and the interior has also undergone changes over the years, albeit in vintage style. The Klainguti heritage comprises various specialities: the cakes called Engadina, Zena and Sacripantina, delicate pastries, jellies, almond paste biscuits and so many other gourmet delights. As well as the de rigueur aperitif you can have lunch upstairs or al fresco and watch the world go by in the old town. Once upon a time this was a meeting place for high society. One of the patrons was the composer Giuseppe Verdi, for whom the Klaingutis created a special brioche called Falstaff. Verdi’s thank-you note is framed above the sweet counter and reads: “Dear Klainguti, thanks for the Falstaff. Superb... much better than mine!”
Genova, Piazza di Soziglia, 98 R
Tel: +39 010 8602628
The shop features ivory, green and gold woodwork with the addition, in 1988, of decorative panels by Attilio Mangini – a perceptive artist whose studio is a stone’s throw from the café – as well as mirrors, stuccoes and chandeliers that embrace customers in a “vaguely rococo” atmosphere reminiscent of the Belle Époque.