Walking into Veronese Gallery Café feels like you’re traversing through an enchanted dreamscape. The tranquil setting takes you away from the bustle of downtown Fullerton to a garden where you can savor each sip of your coffee in serenity.
By Janica Torres
While the ambiance is quaintly quiet, the aesthetic is a cacophony of rustic and lush design. With a mishmash of artful artifacts that meld together within the foliage that envelopes it, this oasis is every coffee lover’s dream.
Ren Collantes, a junior at the Orange County School of Arts, described his first impression of the place as calming.
“When you walk in, it’s an influx of aesthetic, and they make the atmosphere dreamlike with music,” Collantes said.
The café is a relic of sorts, fittingly so since the original property is a house that has been around for over 100 years and is considered a historic landmark. The blend of art and coffee got its roots from owner Seulki Kim’s parents, who purchased the house and turned it into an art gallery to showcase her mother’s paintings.
Originally from South Korea by way of France, Kim’s parents converted the house into a gallery in 2004. At the time, Veronese was solely a gallery, but the Kims slowly started to sell coffee in order to attract more people and profit to the business.
“Little by little, we just started serving coffee,” Kim said. “Then we expanded a little bit, so now it’s become a major draw; the coffee shop is our major and then the gallery an aside.”
The secrecy and seclusion of the café make it a perfect place for students to study or go on a date. Unlike most coffee shops, Veronese’s outdoor seating is open and picturesque, designed in such a way that provides little nooks of private, personal space. Its location is deceiving, situated in a residential neighborhood and masked by shrubbery and orange groves that are a trademark of the city.
Hannah Collantes, a junior nursing student at Cypress College, found out about the café through word of mouth, which is how most customers find their way here. What keeps her coming back is they do their own unique thing.
“Nowadays, if you go to a coffee shop, it’s very modern and minimalistic,” Collantes said. “This is the exact opposite. It takes you into a whole different environment. It makes a great place for a date or studying, but a mix of both of the two, which is very calming.”
Students are welcome to study, use the free wifi, and power their devices as long as they want so long as each person in their party purchases at least one item off the menu. Veronese menu contains a mix of influences from Korean to French and Italian. They offer Korean ramen, Italian spaghetti and paninis, and French crepes that Kim perfected while living in France for six years prior to coming to the US.
What remains their biggest draw is their broad and eclectic variety of beverages from American to Korean coffees, teas, and fresh juices. They also serve a selection of beer, wine, and Makcrash, a milky and fruity Korean alcoholic beverage. What’s special about their menu is their offering of traditional Korean healthy teas served hot or iced that you will not find in any boba shop in town.
If you’re looking for a change of pace, a quiet space to catch up on work, or an intimate environment to get to know that special someone, Veronese Gallery Café promises a magical experience that transports you into a secret garden you can call your own.