It’s been almost ten years since the end of my student years’ urge to spot affordable coffee joints in and around the city’s cultural institutions. Considering my former and current inability to afford to sit in “petit bourgeois” cafés which are popping around Ljubljana like mushrooms after the rain, I was pleasantly surprised by a sudden comeback of a “former accquintace”.
Kljukec, being the older neighbour of one of the more prominent cultural scene hubs Daktari, struggled quite much even before Covid-19 pandemic, being closed and reopened time after time, its premises even being rented by more successful neighbor for a short time period. However its clientele; puppeteers, costume designers, play-writes, directors and other employees of the nearby Ljubljana Puppet Theatre, demanded a comeback. With reopening they also brought back much needed humor amid dire conditions of another Covid-19 lockdown.
After checking your RVT (recovered-vaccinated-tested) pass, that reads PCT in Slovenian, they kindly remind you of a new unofficial rule that this three letters supposedly abbreviate: “Pelinkovec, Chinar, Travarica” which translate into: “Absinthe, Chinar, Herb brandy”. Three spirits one must try before leaving, which also hold a certain “pandemic discount”. “Kljukec“, a cunning, twisted boy from the roofs finally having another go at all the current social dullness, I reckon.
The bar also continues to offer Suspended coffees. This great idea originates from Italy as caffé sospeso (Kava na zalogo) and means you pay for two coffees and drink one. The second one goes to those who can’t afford it.