A Boston restaurateur adds a mobile arm to his operation this weekend. Philip Frattaroli of Ducali Pizzeria & Bar and Cunard Tavern will unveil his new Caffe Pellicano Mobile Espresso Bar at a festival in the North End near another of his family’s restaurants, Filippo Ristorante.
Caffe Pellicano tips its hat to the craft of Italian coffee in more ways than one. The truck is a vintage Piaggio Ape — a three-wheeled Italian truck — which Frattaroli had outfitted for the coffee operation.
“If you think about coffee culture in the U.S., it’s all based on the Italian system of cappuccino and espresso,” he said, and he wanted Caffe Pellicano to hark back to that same Italian heritage.
“In Italy these [vehicles] are very common, actually,” Frattaroli said. He always thought they were cool, and when he learned people were starting to make food trucks out of them, he found a company to modify one for Caffe Pellicano.
Espresso will anchor the menu, with other beverages including Americanos, macchiatos, lattes, cappuccinos, and cold brew for summer. There will also be a drink named after the operation and similar to an Arnold Palmer: The Pellicano will be made with lemonade and cold brew. The truck will also serve biscotti.
“It sounds crazy, but it’s really good,” Frattaroli said.
The truck will make its debut this weekend at a four-day festival to honor St. Anthony’s Feast, put on by Ducali. An outdoor beer garden will be set up in the North End near Causeway and North Washington streets, in front of Filippo Ristorante, with pizza, beer, and coffee available from Thursday, August 23, through Sunday, August 26.
For now, Caffe Pellicano will not join the regularly scheduled fleet of Boston food trucks but will instead be used for events and pop-ups associated with other Frattaroli restaurants.