Today we make a brief return to Alba, Italy for the latest stop in our Espresso in Torino and Piemonte series. Pasticceria Cignetti is one among many boutique food shops along Alba’s pedestrian-only main street/fashion runway. But it is a good example of a local espresso at a place where the espresso isn’t exactly the primary focus. They earned a 2 tazzine, 2 chicchi rating in the 2008 Bar d’Italia del Gambero Rosso — and deservedly so.

As indicated by it’s name, it’s primarily a pastry shop. Inside it has several indoor café tables, it sells a variety of gourmet food items on its many shelves, and it also serves espresso at a small bar in the front.

The Pasticceria Cignetti storefront Pasticceria Cignetti's machine setup

Using a three-group M32 Classic La Cimbali machine, they produce espresso shots with a thinner layer of a mixed medium and some darker brown crema. It has a smoky flavor with some pungency and a medium body.

The staff here are apologetic that they don’t roast their own beans. But they were using local Mokafè beans at my visit, and they supposedly also rotate with Torrefazione Leprato in nearby Acqui Terme. One of the cheaper shots in town at €0.80.

Read the review of Pasticceria Cignetti.

The Pasticceria Cignetti espresso