May 11, 2018
This bar is synonymous with Venice and known as far as New York as the place where the Bellini (fresh peach juice and sparkling wine) was invented by Arrigo Cipriani. Harry’s takes its name from Harry Pickering, an American student who gave its founder, Giuseppe Cipriani, 30,000 lira in gratitude for lending him money when he was destitute. Now, it is famous across the world and the much loved first in an international family of Cipriani bars, cafes and restaurants.
Since opening its doors in 1931, it has had a long and colourful history, with a clientele that has ranged from Lord Byron and Marcel Proust to Orson Welles and Trueman Capote, as well as many a passing millionaire. Ernest Hemmingway was a fixture during the long winter of 1949-50. Harry’s retains its charm today, as do its friendly staff with the aid of a dazzling array of beers, wines, spirits and cocktails, they will help to anaesthetise you against the size of the bill at the end of the night.
The atmosphere is great, the buzzing side bar is usually lined up with drinks and you won’t find many empty tables in its top-class restaurant come dinner time. To cap it all, Harry’s was declared a national landmark in 2001 by the Italian Ministry for Cultural Affairs. So go, knock back a Sweet Annie, order the fillet of sole alla Carlina or the beef Carpaccio and make your contribution to Italy’s national heritage in the most enjoyable way.