Rhody Gem: New Owners, Same Vibe at Providence’s Riffraff Bookstore and Bar

December 2023

What it is:

An independent bookstore with a built-in cafe and bar.


Where to find it:

Tucked inside THE PLANT, a repurposed mill building in Olneyville also housing spots like Hungry Ghost Press and Troop, Riffraff’s entrance can be found in the courtyard on Delaine Street.


What makes it a Rhody Gem?

Riffraff opened in 2017, but when it went up for sale this year, Ottavia De Luca and Lucas Mann were quick to take over the legacy of their favorite indie bookstore (they even held their baby shower between the stacks before taking over the store). De Luca and Mann kept the original name and mission: to host a highly curated book selection in a relaxed atmosphere that encourages community bonding and readers to socialize with one another. It is a place where customers can “browse books, sit and do some work, meet friends for a drink, and attend events in the evening,” De Luca explains. Events include book launches, author readings, open mic nights, trivia nights, and private parties. The space also boasts a beautiful courtyard, perfect for sipping one of the store’s specialty cocktails or coffees, meeting people, and getting fresh air – even in the winter when the heat lamps are rolled out for comfort.



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