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One of Cambridge’s newest restaurants is trying to entice diners and coffee drinkers with an Italian-themed menu.

Charlie’s Coffee Company opened its doors in November on a pedestrian street near the Grafton Shopping Centre. Despite the English-sounding name, Charlie’s menu is bread-and-sauce heavy. About a dozen pizzas are available, topped with classic Italian ingredients like speck (a type of bacon), taleggio (a type of cheese) and the always popular pepperoni. The only other entree-portion items are sandwiches. There are seven varieties, including a tribute to England the Charlie’s Full House. The sandwich is basically half of an English breakfast with eggs, bacon, sausage and mozzarella.

My wife and I decided to split the Dr. Johnny pizza, which is 16 inches of mozzarella, pepperoni, n’duja (a kind of sausage), olives, arugula and chili oil. Once the chili was spread a bit more evenly (our cook seemed to favor clumps of pepper), the pizza had a satisfying kick that paired well with the cheese and meat.

The coffee promised by the restaurant’s name in the form of espresso and can be ordered in the typical forms: lattes, Americanos, etc. The coffee brand – Illy – stays true to the Italian theme. The cup Charlie’s produces puts it in competition with other chain shops around Cambridge, like Starbucks.

While Charlie’s touts its coffee, this is not the restaurant’s strongest point. My wife, who prefers a strong latte, found Charlie’s version weak. My espresso was fine, but it wasn’t something that would draw me back

“I would go to them for pizza, probably not coffee,” my wife said after the meal.

mathis.adam@stripes.com

Charlie’s Coffee Company

Address: 44-45 Burleigh Street, Cambridge, England

Times: 8 a.m. to 8 p.m. all week

Costs: 16-inch pizzas costs about 14 British pounds (about $22) and sandwiches about 4.50 British pounds.

Attire: Casual

Menu: English

Information: (+44) (0)1223478545; website: facebook.com/CharliesCoffeeCo

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