This is a preview of the content in our Bologna + Modena Art & Culture app. Get the app to:
  • Read offline
  • Remove ads
  • Access all content
  • Use the in-app Map to find sites, and add custom locations (your hotel...)
  • Build a list of your own favourites
  • Search the contents with full-text search functionality
  • ... and more!
iOS App Store Google Play

Museo delle Macchine da Caffé

Museum of Coffee Machines

Old-Time Espresso Makers

Caffé Cagliari is a century-old local roaster that makes a pretty good brew; you'll see it all over Emilia. The firm has assembled this collection of over a hundred antique espresso machines, one of the largest in the world.

Coffee technology goes back at least to the 18th century. Back then coffee was either just boiled or passed through a filter, and the earliest machines were only intended to keep the stuff warm. Real espresso (it means 'ready-made') only arrived with the invention of the espresso machine, with its steam boiler, in the 1890's.

The coffee-enslaved Italians soon made the new machine into a cult object, reigning as queen of the bar like some extraplanetary religious icon. More than anything, this museum is a parade of the best and flashiest Italian design. The machines from the Mussolini Deco years and the even spacier postwar decades are amazing. They deserve a museum.

Practical Info Practical Info icon

Curently moving to a new site and reopening in 2024; check their website.

Modena Museums and Galleries

Text © Dana Facaros & Michael Pauls

Image by Ufficio di Turismo