Seize the chance to dine in an Alajmo restaurant with a special deal
“A historical French landmark with the flavors of Italy”
Caffè Stern, located in the heart of Paris inside the Passage des Panoramas, is the brainchild of the Alajmo brothers and Gianni Frasi, a fourth-generation coffee roaster from Verona. Housed inside a landmark letterpress shop, Caffè Stern was brought back to life thanks to designer Philippe Starck.
Open all day, visitors can stop by for an olive oil brioche in the morning and return later in the day for Venetian-style “cicchetti” like baccalà mantecato (whipped stockfish) with fried polenta squares. The lunch and dinner menu features Italian classics revisited by Max Alajmo like spaghetti alla Carbonara or a “cappuccino” made with potato puree and Bolognese meat ragu.
In the kitchen of Caffè Stern, you will find executive chef Denis Mattiuzzi, who has worked alongside Max Alajmo for over 10 years, originally at Le Calandre (Padua) and then at Ristorante Quadri (Venice). The front of the house is managed by Piodaniele Chimetto, the Alajmo brothers’ cousin, and the wine program is run by Mirko Favalli.
The Caffè Stern menu
captures the essence of Max Alajmo’s interpretation of Italian cuisine:
“intensely light and nostalgically contemporary.” Visitors will find everything
from antipasti and primi piatti to cheese and desserts, as well as
Venetian-style cicchetti and tastings menu of 4 or 6 courses.
Caffè Stern is located inside Passage des Panoramas, the oldest of seventeen arcades in Paris to have survived Haussmann's urban renovation of the mid-1800s when most of these ornate walkways were replaced by grands magasins (department stores). The space that now houses Caffè Stern was originally opened as a letterpress in 1834 by Moïse Stern and Anselme Aumoitte. In 1849, the two entrepreneurs rented several small shops inside the Passage at the intersection of Galerie des Variétés and Galerie Feydeau, which would become their apartments and the headquarters of their flourishing business. Stern eventually took over the business, renaming it Maison Stern and designing the ex-libris (bookplate) that hangs as a large sign above the entrance to Caffè Stern still to this day. The sign contains the dates 1867 and 1889, the two years in which Stern was awarded a gold medal at the World Fair. In 1980 Moïse invited his son René to join the business, renaming it Stern et fils. Over the years, the business was passed down from generation to generation and the traditional letterpress techniques were maintained. In 2008, Maison Stern moved from Passage des Panoramas to 131 rue du Faubourg Saint-Honoré in the 8th arrondissement. On July 10, 2009, Maison Stern, including its interiors and furnishings was named a Historic Monument of France. The space remained closed to the public until September 2014 when it was reopened by the Alajmo brothers. Today, Caffè Stern is an Italian-style coffeehouse and bistro, allowing the public to enjoy a part of French history.