As you know we stopped in Florence just for one night to celebrate Dave’s birthday and deciding where to eat was crucial. I wanted to take him to the one of the best restaurants in Florence so we reached out to a lot of people for recommendations.
I wished we could have tried more but lardo in Colonnata is calling and we’re hungry!
That said I didn’t want our friends’ recommendations go unused and so I’m compiled their recommendations for the best restaurants in Florence. Not only to help those who are going, but also to remind us the next time we go back.
Lampredotto Food Cart
Andrea from Taste Bologna is my go-to for recommendations in Italy, he claims this is one of the best. Just outside Mercato Centrale there is a food cart selling panino al lampredotto for under 4 Euro, it’s not far from Carapino Gelato so you can grab a sandwich and gelato for the perfect lunch.
Located on the first floor of Mercato Centrale this little tavola calda opens at 5 am for the market workers. Taylor from Fatted Calf recommended eating two of their panini as they serve a sliced boiled beef or boiled tripe on a little roll, which he says are “both fucking amazing” and in his top 5 sandwiches of all time – which says a lot
His adds that it’s essential to ask for bread bagnato as they will dunk the bottom half of the bun in the braising liquor before assembling it. via Sant’Antonino
This panini shop has been recommended by many people, across from the Sant’Ambrogio food market and claims to serve the best panino. With options like duck, donkey and pork, this tiny shop is worth the walk to Piazza Ghiberti. Pizza Lorenzo Ghiberti, 44/r
Want to make your own food, consider a cooking class in Florence.
Osteria dei Benci
We ate here for Dave’s birthday, get the spaghetti dell’Ubriacone where the noodles are cooked in red wine.
A traditional Florence restaurant that does the classics amazingly well. If they have it, get the Pinzimonio, which is baby vegetables served raw with this year’s new olive oil. Via dè Benci, 13 r, 50122
Trattoria da Rocco
A true locals’ restaurant, Trattoria da Rocca is located inside another beautiful market, Piazza Ghiberti.
It’s perfect for travelers on a budget as a three course meal is less than $20 for home cooked food. Mercato di Sant’Ambrogio, Piazza Ghiberti
Located on the other side of the river, Zeb is a traditional restaurant run by a mother and son sharing family recipes. T
he menu is written outside on the chalkboard so make note of what you’d like before you sit down. If you’re up for a picnic it’s also possible to order takeaway from the deli out front. via San Miniato, 2, 50125
Formerly Zibibbo, it is worth a splurge to try traditional Tuscan food. It was once located outside the city but has recently located next to the Duomo.
If you’re looking for a deal on lunch they’re currently offering a 50% off card when you register on their site. via delle Seggiole 14r
Asking where to get the best gelato in Florence is highly debated. In our whirlwind 24 hours we tried Gelateria dei Neri and loved it. Carapina Gelato is a modern looking shop just off Ponte Vecchio, all products are made that morning in-house and thrown out at the end of the day. Via Lambertesca, 18, 50122
Gelateria dei Neri
We loved this old school gelateria with innovative flavours like rice and Gorgonzola. The staff doesn’t speak English but it’s easy to order and they’re happy to give samples to try. It’s not far from Ponte Vecchio. via dei Neri, 9/11, 50122
Dolci & Dolcezze
Considered by many to be the best pastry shop in Florence, it’s like walking into a time machine with vintage mint green decor and classic music playing. They claim to serve the world’s best chocolate cake and have dedicated a plaque to this. Piazza Cesare Beccaria, 8r
Do you think we missed anything that should be added to this list? Leave a note in the comments and we’ll add it to the post.
Images (c) Fran_Sinclair: https://flic.kr/p/o16Pxx , I. Amos