Caffe Cordina – The Carnival Connection

The Carnival Collection

Carnival and Caffe Cordina are synonymous with one another. From the vibrant colours of the striking prinjolata to the pretty pastel hues of their perlini, we take a trip down memory lane to discover just how these sweet treats became an intrinsic part of Carnival’s well-loved celebrations.

It’s almost impossible to imagine how our capital’s Carnival celebrations must have evolved over the years. From the early days of demure dances and masked balls, to the energetic street-filled parades that take place today.

However, one Valletta destination has been witness to much of that change – and it has evolved itself too, of course. After all, Cordina has been present since 1837, when the Cordina family would sell homemade nougat from a donkey-driven cart. Since, they have witnessed hundreds of Carnival celebrations year on year, while simultaneously building their business into the thriving brand it is today.

Over the decades, Caffe Cordina became the popular choice for so many seasonal sweet treats, including the ones most associated with Carnival. It is their prinjolata – Malta’s very own Carnival cake – that takes centre stage at this time of year. This dessert is instantly recognisable for its unusual dome-like shape and its semblance to a snow-capped mountain. It is made with a cacophony of ingredients, including cream, biscuits, citrus peel and Caffe Cordina’s own secret blend of components, and topped with melted chocolate, pine nuts, pistachios, meringue and glace cherries.


Another popular Carnival treat is the café’s perlini – dainty sugar-coated almonds that look as good as they taste, and which were traditionally thrown down to onlookers from performers aboard the Carnival floats. Now perlini are enjoyed all year round, but some things never change and they still retain their link to this dazzling time of year.

Perlini and Prinjolata


But Caffe Cordina hasn’t stopped simply at perlini and prinjolata. Today their displays are more dynamic and vibrant than ever, and there’s so much to delight sweet-toothed revellers keen to tuck into a Carnival-themed treat. For instance, there’s brightly-coloured cupcakes that taste as good as they look – from the banana cupcake with a toffee filling, topped with peanut and vanilla butter cream finished with a beautiful Venetian Mask motif, to the Circus Clown chocolate cupcake filled with chocolate orange and covered in yellow sugar paste. And for those keen to spread smiles over the Carnival holidays, Caffe Cordina has just introduced its new buttery ‘Emoji’ cookies in scrumptious lemon, chocolate and peanut flavours.

Emoji Cookies

It’s clear to see that the resulting confectionery collection is a perfect blend of the time-honoured methods that Caffe Cordina and its team have been known for since the 19th century, and the innovation that it still injects into every one of its recipes today. Caffe Cordina remains the ultimate destination to ensure you enjoy a Carnival that’s fun, traditional and delicious, all in one!