In a post some time ago (read it here), I told you about how the habit of having an aperitivo in Turin was born and how Vermouth, together with the city, was the protagonist in this invention. A few days ago the news came out confirming that Vermouth is officially from Turin (read here), and I’m sure this recognition will entice you to try as many aperitivos as you can, here in Turin.
Map of the best places to have an aperitivo in Turin
Here for you then, a list of the 10 best places to have an aperitivo or an apericena in Turin:
1. Gran Bar
Why: Because in summer the outdoor seating in the square of the Gran Bar is a super cool place. The aperitivo is served at the table, but the real reason to choose the Gran Bar is that you can choose between the traditional aperitivo or the sushi aperitivo: certainly, a very original idea and that is really appreciated. Often it happens that you want a bit of sushi but not a whole Japanese dinner and the Gran Bar is the only place in Turin that satisfies this desire!
Piazza Gran Madre di Dio, 2, 10131 Turin TO
+39 011 1892 1901
2. Bar Zucca
Why: Because it’s the bar of a historical Italian brand, which tells us the story of Zabarbaro Zucca, a liquor invented in 1919 in Milan. From the ’20s till the year 2000, Caffé Zucca was in Via Roma (where now you’ll find a Zara Home shop) and it was very popular among the local Turinese who would go there for a coffee, a snack or an aperitivo. In 2013, it was reopened in Via Gramsci (with the entire street closed for the inauguration event by invitation only). And because you’ll want to try the historical cocktails (green: non-alcoholic and red: alcoholic) and taste a delicious aperitivo served at your table -obviously!- in a chic, elegant place full of classy people.
Via Antonio Gramsci, 10, 10123 Turin TO
+39 011 562 1249
3. Arancia di Mezzanotte
Why: Because it’s in a beautiful location: it has a covered outdoor area with many seats and because here they propose a very rich aperitivo, completely served at the table consisting of various dishes, among which you’ll have the opportunity to taste the famous Piemontese delicacy, bagna cauda, with fresh vegetables!
Bar Ristorante Arancia di Mezzanotte
Piazza Emanuele Filiberto, 11I, 10122 Turin TO
+39 011 521 1338
Tue-Thu, Sun: 7pm–2am
Why: Because it’s a place in the NY style where they serve very original and delicious cocktails! In this cosy and welcoming place, you’ll be able to choose among a long list of cocktails. The aperitivo formula is replaced by a choice of “tapas”, i.e. appetizers: from the most classic dish of cold cuts and cheese (oversized) to the more exotic salmon and avocado. The service is quick and attentive, and the cuisine is refined and high quality, but for sure you will want to go back there for the excellent quality of their cocktails. It’s a unique place, a bit exclusive and filled with classy people.
Piazza Gran Madre di Dio, 10, 10131 Torino TO
+39 347 601 0570
Why: Because it’s in a position a bit hidden in San Salvario, therefore the people there are those who really want to go. Because from the first step inside you’ll be flying directly to East Berlin, old sofas and scratched walls, all perfectly reproduced to create an original and comfy scene! Because the cocktails are superb (mojito is nr.1) and you can really feel the alternative environment. Because it’s not a place for the snobbish.
Via Claudio Luigi Berthollet, 9, 10125 Turin TO
Che il nome, DDR, non vi inganni: non si tratta di un casermone di cemento armato; dentro non troverete un orribile linoleum e luci al neon sfarfallanti, bensì un arredamento azzeccato, muri poeticamente scrostati e opere d’arte sparse qua e là. Nei cocktail e nel buffet dell’aperitivo riconosci il marchio di qualità della Drogheria e…
6. Caffè Rossini
Why: Because it has been one of the main focal points of the Turinese nightlife for the past 25 years, and you can breathe the success story of this place in the air. The Rossini is a guarantee: you’ll always feel good there. The aperitivo is cheap and comes with a rich buffet. The people there are diverse: you’ll find everyone from the forty-something businessman still with his tie, having just left the office to the dishevelled student who doesn’t feel like cooking dinner. The bartenders behind the counter are very friendly and passionate: they give suggestions for the beers and prepare mojitos that you shouldn’t miss!
Ristorante Caffè Rossini
Corso Regina Margherita, 80/e, 10153 Torino TO
+39 011 521 4105
7. Circolo Santa Giulia
Why: Because it was one of the first bars opened in the Vanchiglia neighbourhood when it was not yet the Movida area that it is today. Originally it was an ARCI club and you wouldn’t have been able to find it if you didn’t know that it existed. The good thing is that it has kept its authenticity, its style as an easy-going place, typical of the “old school” Vanchiglia neighbourhood and the bartenders behind the counter are always friendly and welcoming as if they were hosting you at their own home. Because it’s the emblem of the alternative aperitivo: always crowded with university students (mainly from the humanistic studies), artists, dog walkers, creatives, many sitting on the ground…. The ideal aperitivo to be in a crowd of people in a relaxed and inclusive atmosphere, with the philosophy: live and let live.
Circolo Santa Giulia
Piazza Santa Giulia, 11/F, 10124 Turin TO
+39 011 836694
Why: Because they have quality wines, because it is the epitome of drinking a glass of wine in the company of friends, because they now have a very large outdoor area and so there is always plenty of people and then because it is in the trendiest street of Turin!!!!! (see here)
Piolino – Vini Caffè
Via Monferrato, 23, 10131 Turin TO
+39 011 839 9080
9. John Toast
Why: Because the aperitoast is an original idea: it’s made up of little toasted canapes with different toppings, delicious and tasteful and because you’ll enjoy it in front of the paramount and spectacular Mole Antonelliana: to do once in a lifetime, at least!
Via Montebello, 9, 10124 Turin TO
+39 011 1990 4772
Why: Because it’s a different way to have a snack before dinner and above all because it’s in a terrific location. The Turinese call it Piazza Carlina, based on the old 18th-century name, Piazza Carolina. Back then it was common to use the name of a square as a possessive, in this case, Charles Emmanuel II’s square, but history went in a different direction and instead the monument in the centre represents Count Camillo Benso from Cavour. The statue depicts the statesman as an allegory of Italy, half-kneeling and being offered the civic crown. The square, which was once the centre of the Jewish ghetto, is surrounded by precious buildings from the 18th century, among which there are the Church of Saint Cross and the Roero di Guarene Palace, both designed by Filippo Juvarra. The Turinese like this aesthetically beautiful square very much, as it’s a little paradise downtown, for spending the spring and summer nights.
Trapizzino | Piazza Carlina
Piazza Carlo Emanuele II, 17, 10123 Turin TO
+39 011 1875 5933
Useful Info on where to have the best aperitivo in Turin:
Where to Stay – Hotels in Turin
Whenever we travel in Italy, we always try to stay at an NH Hotel. They are simply the best! The rooms are comfortable and well-appointed. The staff are always very friendly and helpful. And they have the most delicious breakfast! In Turin, we are fortunate to have several NH Hotels but there are definitely two centrally located that we can highly recommend: the NH Collection Torino Piazza Carlina and the NH Torino Santo Stefano. Both are beautiful hotels in the city centre, walking distance from all the main tourist attractions.
If you are looking for something a little more economical, we can also highly recommend the Le Petit Hotel, a sweet little hotel in the heart of Turin, just next to Piazza Solferino and walking distance to all the main attractions and museums.