UPDATE: FRaTeLLi has a new location in Zona G! Carrera 5 No. 69-27
This week I had the pleasure of having lunch for the second time at Fratelli Espresso Bar at the San Martin shopping center downtown. I don’t go downtown often but it’s totally worth the trip to get a good sandwich and visit with the owner, my good friend from school.
Bogotanos, and most Colombians for that matter, are not sandwich people. Even in this day and age with globalization and all this talk of the homogenization of cultures and cuisine, eating a sandwich for lunch will still make some people look at you kinda funny.
When I worked a regular office job I would often take a sandwich, chips, and maybe a fruit and some cookies for lunch. Without fail I would get several looks of pity and comments like, “Is that all you’re eating for lunch?” “You poor, poor thing”, may as well have been added onto that. When I’d look around most people had a giant tupperware filled to the brim with rice, potatoes, pork, chicken, beans, plantains, and other makings of a pretty substantial meal. It’s impressive – particularly the part about having to get up at 4:30am to cook that lunch. Now that is crazy!
But anyways, back to lunch. Fratelli has nice ambience, good music, friendly service, and really good sandwiches, soups, pastas, cakes, coffees, and smoothies – and all at very reasonable prices. On my first visit I had a soup (homemade potato and leek) and sandwich combo which was super filling and delicious, so this time I just had a sandwich – turkey pastrami, mozzarella, and hot mustard – delicious again. My dining companion had a bresaola (air-dried salted beef), arugula, and balsamic sandwich that looked great too.
Finally, to round off the meal we split a big ‘ole chunk of chocolate cake with a delicate layer of arequipe (milk caramel spread) and one of chocolate ganache. We even got personalized decorations in chocolate sauce!
So yes, Fratelli is quite a nice spot and I’m definitely looking forward to my next visit…which reminds me! There is also breakfast on the menu which I am sure is just as good as the rest of the food.
There are plans for Fratelli to open a few more locations around town, making it a little more accessible for people further north. I can’t wait.
Fratelli Espresso Bar
Carrera 7 # 32-16
C.C. San Martin – 1st Floor
Tel: 742 5404