While recently visiting Andover, a good friend highly recommended I stop by Caffe Nero at 77 Main St. and try their coffee—and I’m glad I did. In an already competitive market, saturated with well-established favorites Caffe Nero more than exceeded my expectations.
When it comes to grabbing your favorite cup of Joe, there’s a short list of three basic requirements: Is it convenient? Is there a short wait time? And is it great coffee.
Suffice it to say, the answer was a hearty “yes” to all three. The beehive of Baristas behind the counter busily take orders, of Americanos, espressos, and cappuccinos.
Caffe Nero only brews variations of highly selected Italian roasts—perfecting their processes since being founded in 1997. Additionally, all their beans are processed daily (currently located in London, England, where they also opened their first store), then overnighted to almost 700 locations sprinkled over eight countries—England, Ireland, Poland, Turkey, Greece, Cyprus, U.A.E., and now the United States—with the first six locations around Boston.
Founder and CEO Gerry Ford attended both Harvard and Tufts and always envisioned returning to his old stomping grounds. “We’re European, not American,” he explains. “We have a different flavor that will fit very well with Boston’s affinity toward all things European.”
Adding to their coffee repertoire, Caffe Nero also provides breakfast pastries and gourmet sandwiches and salads. “We actually bake all of our croissants in house,” says Caitlan Morris, U.S. Operations marketing assistant. Opting for a rustic apple tart, I was immediately transported to memories of sampling end-of-summer State Fair blue-ribbon pies while growing up in Michigan.
The café’s decor is as comfortable as it is eclectic, with vibrant antique chairs, sofas, tables, and lighting—all complimented by a double-sided fireplace amidst floor-to-ceiling bookshelves loaded with classics. The smooth jazz and classical surround sound inspired and for a brief moment, I felt like I was back on that post-college trek through Europe.