Found At Pisillo: Pocket Coffee, Italy’s Little-Known Perfect Pick-Me-Up

One of the best things about Lower Manhattan is how it shows an easy unity of what might seem like opposites.

Take its marriage of old and new, from the cobblestones of Stone Street (one of the oldest streets in New York), to the cutting-edge architecture of the Oculus. It’s a museum that’s a living place and a living place that’s a museum. Or take, as another example, the cozy feel of its cafés wedged among the colossal towering skyscrapers. It’s a city that’s a town and a town that’s a city.

Every now and then, it’s possible to have it all. And recently, sitting on the counter at Pisillo Italian Cafe (adjacent to its amazing sandwich hub), was yet another iteration of this theme: A candy that’s a coffee and a coffee that’s a candy. That’s Pocket Coffee. 

While many Ferrero products make their way stateside (e.g., Nutella), Pocket Coffee is a rarity. Far easier to find in the bars of Italy than pretty much anywhere in the U.S., it turns out that Pocket Coffee is available (as a very satisfied Alliance staffer and Pisillo devotee discovered recently) right here in Lower Manhattan’s own little Italian hole in the wall on Nassau Street.

A word of caution if you are new to Pocket Coffee: Do not try to savor Pocket Coffee piece by piece. There is literally a little shot of liquid espresso encapsulated in each Pocket Coffee’s delicious chocolate casing, so taking it in two bites is a recipe for major spillage. Also, Pocket Coffee should be stored in one’s pocket with an attention to its having both ample space and proper temperature (bring Pocket Coffee with you anywhere — that’s part of its charm! — just not to the schvitz). 

So next time you’re getting an espresso at Pisillo’s coffee counter, pick up a Pocket Coffee for a boost later on, when that to-stay shot wears off.