Thursday, July 26, 2007

Bar Cordano

One of the most pleasant nooks in downtown Lima is the Bar Cordano. Established around 1905 by Italian immigrants and just steps away from the train station and the Presidential Palace, the Cordano was for many years a popular haunt for travellers, politicians, bureaucrats, and even presidents.

Today, it is owned and managed by its workers, some of whom have been working there for decades (a picture of them in earlier times hangs on the wall), and although the bar and venerable espresso machine have been polished, the Cordano's marble tabletops, collection of old soft-drink and beer bottles, and quality food and drinks -the pisco sours are fantastic!- remain unchanged.

Saddly, the Cordano does not get the traffic that it used to. Although it is frequented by tour groups, these often don't stay or only order drinks. When we were there, as we exited we crossed paths with a small group whose guide was instructing his charges to pass through and exit onto Jirón Ancash, and most emphatically not to stay there. Too bad for them, as they were missing out on one of the classic Lima experiences.

Bar Cordano
202 Jirón Ancash
(corner with Jirón Carabaya)

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Alejandro, of PeruFood, has posted his translation of an article on the Cordano, "Bar Cordano: Lima's Most Historic Bar Facing Difficult Times", which originally appeared in Spanish here.

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