Gastronomic guide to eat in Florence

As you already know, Italian gastronomy is known and accepted all over the world. And if we are planning a vacation to this country it would be unforgivable not to take this opportunity to try both its typical dishes and any other variety. Actually the city of Florence has an infinity of places to eat; the problem arises when deciding in which of them, due to the amount of options.

In this capital of Tuscany there is a simple gastronomy, but with great quality of its ingredients; and many menus are of tourist type, that include really very high prices. That is why it is necessary a guide of alternatives where you can try different options and with good prices; the idea is that you try the different pleasures of the Florentine cuisine, enjoy!

How are the food tasting places in Florence classified?

In the city of Florence there are many places where you can eat; however, these can also be classified according to the type of food they sell, according to the prices of their dishes or also according to the atmosphere they present. 

That is to say, there are those that are restaurants, which are usually luxurious and high priced. But there are also the trattorias, which are restaurants, but less luxurious, of a more familiar type and that offer you the dish of the day with a single fixed price. There are also pizzerias; there are a lot of them, but of quality and different tastes. They can even sell you pizza al corte or al taglio; it is sold according to the weight. 

Let’s talk a little about the traditional food of the city of Florence:

The preparation of the dishes is done with products that are typical of this region, taking into account the season; they are natural flavors, leaving aside artificial and very heavy sauces. In addition, there are basic ingredients that should not be missing, among them oils, sausages, cheeses, vegetables and pasta. Some of its typical dishes are:

  • Bistecca alla Fiorentina, which consists of a large veal cutlet, high cut including the bone; grilled and lightly cooked. 
  • They also have Trippa alla Fiorentina, known under the name of lampredotto, made from cow guts, exactly from the abomasum; one of the 4 stomachs of the cow and prepared in tomato sauce.
  • Ribollita is a thick soup of vegetables, beans and dry bread. Its origins date back to the Middle Ages, when the nobles would leave the bread for the servants once they finished their lunch, and these with some vegetables and the bread would boil it. 
  • Also Pappa al Pomodoro, which is of peasant origin and is made with unsalted bread, garlic, tomatoes, basil, olive oil, pepper and salt. 
  • They also have the Pollo al Mattone, which is plastered with bricks and then roasted. And many others like Cinghiale in umido, wild boar meat prepared with tomatoes. Crostini di Fegatini, which is a good toast covered with chicken liver pate, Pappardelle alla leper, pasta with hare meat and Bolognese sauce; or if you prefer Ravioli di Cinghiale, which is a preparation of ravioli, but filled with wild boar meat. 

These are just some of the preparations that are usually accompanied by Chianti wine. Then, at the end of the meal, it is customary to have a cappuccino with limoncello or a well-known liqueur. As for desserts, the typical sweet in Florence is called Cantucci, a sponge cake with almonds. 

Gelato is important for Italians, made with traditional techniques and different ingredients. It is said that it was in Florence where gelato was born, at the height of the Renaissance. Finally, we should not forget that the city also has wine bars or enotecas, where a good plate of cold meats, cheese and bread is also served.

Some places to eat well and at good prices:

The city of Florence offers many places where you can taste delicious dishes, without diminishing the quality of the food and at a low cost. Among these alternatives we have:

The Antico Vinaio in Via dei Neri, 74:

In this place the specialty is the Schiacciata, a square and flat bread that is filled with different combinations, either those on the menu or the combination that you like. The advantage is that they prepare it at the moment, with fresh and high quality products. Here you will spend a maximum of 5€.

At El I’Raddi, Via d’Ardiglione 47:

This restaurant is located in the Oltramo area and offers a variety of 12 different and very reasonably priced dishes, with a minimum of 3€ and a maximum of 12. The menu varies daily and the reviews are excellent.

Panini Toscani, in Piazza del Duomo:

Experts say that the best panini in the city of Florence is in this place. The service is excellent and you also receive a full explanation of how to prepare the panini, as you can taste the different ingredients, of course of high quality. The cost does not exceed 6 €.

La Prosciutteria Firenze, in via del Neri, 54: 

Near the Uffizi Gallery, approximately 100 meters away, is located this place; a wine cellar, although somewhat small, with a family atmosphere, in addition to the tables of cold meats and cheeses that are a spectacle; which are served with beer or wine, depending on the taste of the person. Their prices are very affordable. 

The I’Brindellone at Pizza Piattellina, 10:

As we have already seen, one of the typical dishes of the region is La Bistecca alla Fiorentina and l’Brindellone, being this the best place for these preparations. It is worth trying that famous grilled veal cutlet. The cost does not exceed 10€. 

Gelateria De’ Neri on Via dei Neri, near the Antico Vinaio:

We also mentioned earlier that Italians have the habit of eating their ice cream after the meal, as a dessert; and among the best ice cream parlors is located this Gelateria De’Neri, with a good variety of flavors. A true Italian experience. 

The Caffé Astra al Duomo, at the Hotel Laurus al Duomo:

We cannot fail to mention this cafe, which makes it easy to have breakfast, a snack or a rest after a good tour of the city and in the historic center. It is open every day and you will find both sandwiches and fabulous pastries. 

Some places to eat well and more elegant: 

La Bottega del Buon Caffe, in the center of Florence:

La Bottega del Buon Caffe represents the excellence of Florence. Many recommend trying the homemade foie ravioli or a lamb shoulder. Likewise, a créme brûlée, cheesecake or the exquisite ice cream. It is also known for its latté, Americano and espresso coffee. 

La Bottega Conviviale, Via Ghibellina, 134:

Very famous for the preparation of homemade pastas and for the pizzas Napoletana Classica, Margarita, Romana or Gourmanda, which are all cooked in wood-fired ovens. On arrival you are served a tapa accompanied by a glass of frizzante wine and at the end of the meal a lemoncello or a meloncello. There are also other menus of the day. 

Il Palagio Restaurant at the Four Seasons Hotel:

This restaurant offers Italian, Mediterranean and European food, with excellent service. In addition, they also offer vegetarian and gluten-free diets. A beautiful establishment where you can have lunch, brunch or just dinner. 

The Golden View Open Bar, at Via de’Bardi, 58/r:

The dishes at this place are varied, from meats and pizzas to risotto, fish, salads and various Mediterranean specialties. The prices are a bit high, but it has such spectacular views that it is worth it, since from there you can see the Vasari Corridor, the Uffizi Gallery, the Ponte Vecchio and the Arno River.

Eataly Restaurant, in Via de’Martelli, 22R:

This restaurant is located a few meters from the Duomo area, and offers pastas, pizzas, meats, ice cream and more. They also have a market that offers organic products such as breads, olive oil, homemade pasta, among others. Prices are very similar to those in New York City. 

Restaurant La Giostra in Borgo Pinti, 10/18 Rosso: 

La Giostra opened its doors more than 25 years ago, located between Santa Croce square and the Duomo. A cozy, small place, decorated with candles and lights on the ceiling, with the most outstanding options being pasta, ravioli and tortelloni; also seafood and osso buco.

Posted in Europe, Florence, Italy.