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  • Writer's picturerobertkruge

Caffe Driade

Updated: Oct 17, 2018

July 13, 2018 -


There exists an idiosyncratic building set far back from East Franklin Street just outside the village of Chapel Hill, NC. The driveway that leads to the entrance is a minefield of ruts and potholes. The former home appears about ready for a good bull dozing. Everything is a bit dingy and colorless. No overstuffed leather wingbacks await, but rather rickety, undersized bare-metal chairs and tables greet you.

But this tiny, cinder brick building houses the Caffe Driade, a coffee bar with an unpretentious atmosphere, friendly service and great coffee.

What looks like rusty, old farm machinery, with an impressive patina of accumulated dust and dirt, hangs over head. An eclectic mix of artwork that changes periodically hangs on the walls. The rusted “chandelier” does not appear to have been cleaned in years and the artwork does not appear to have been curated.

Bins of coffee sourced from a local roaster line a wall behind the barista station. That’s why I’m here or course, for the coffee, to be specific, a very dry cappuccino. Now if you order such a thing at Starbuck’s, there is no telling what you’ll get, but here it is always made just right and with care. Pastries from the Guglhupf Bakery round out the experience.

While I’ve never visited after dark, the space doubles as a wine/beer bar afternoons and evenings. Where could you find a better place to fritter away your free time?

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