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OrangeI spent my youth in Orange, California. A small town about 15 minutes from Disneyland; that’s how we explain it to out of town folks. The house I grew up in is a hop, skip and a jump from the circle of orange, named for the roundabout in the middle of Old Towne Orangethat connects four streets at the heart of my little city.

I’ve always loved the Circle. There is always something to do there, a giant International Street Fair every Labor Day weekend, great restaurants, antique shops galore, trendy new bars and great places to get coffee.

My favorite place to get coffee in Old Towne is Café Lucca. The cappuccinos are excellent. Served with a homemade Madeline cookie, in a wonderfully decorated location.

capu at Cafe Lucca

Cafe Lucca Old OrangeThe outside of Lucca’s offers about four small tables, there is a covered entry way, painted from floor to ceiling with garden expanses with a few more tables, and when you walk through the ornate glass and wood doors, you find faux painted Tuscan gold walls, wonderful paintings, a decorative chandelier and antique metal ceiling tiles. It is defiantly a destination coffee shop. Every time I go back to visit, I make several coffee dates at Lucca’s and often run into old acquaintances there.

Lucca’s offers breakfast, lunch panini’s, dinner and comes equipped with a very lovely gelato case. I’ve had the gelato and there is a taste of Italy there, Americanized but very good. I’ve had breakfast often, the food is simply presented and always tastes good, but the food isn’t amazing. The thing is, Lucca’s strengths lie in its coffee, gelato, location, and ambiance.

That’s why the moment my plane lands in good old John Wayne airport, I make a beeline for Lucca’s, for the coffee and the atmosphere. I can highly recommend Lucca’s for both of those to always be outstanding. A cappuccino at Lucca’s, sitting in the middle of Old Towne Orange, is a wonderfully California style Italian coffee break.