39 Hours in Florence: What We Ate

I know, it was practically a lifetime ago that we were in Florence, but I can't let that stop me from telling you all the particulars of what we ate, drank, and swooned over while we were there.

First of all, there was the coffee. Last time I was in Italy (2002, that would be) I was not yet a coffee drinker, and I cannot stress enough how much better my experience was this time, for that reason alone. How could an Italian morning possibly be complete without a gorgeous, foamy cappuccino, along with some kind of fluffy, cream-filled pastry? It couldn't, and that's the truth. Where to go? You couldn't do much better than Coronas Cafe, on the Via del Corso between the Duomo and the Piazza della Signoria. We found it by accident, and ended up going back the next day. If you're feeling schmancy and in the mood for animal prints, you could also try the Caffè Giacosa next to the Roberto Cavalli. Just make sure to take your coffee standing up at the bar instead of sitting, to avoid being charged double just for the privilege of a seat.

And then there were the Negronis, mixed to perfection at Sei Divino, conveniently located a block from Arno, on the way home to The New Oregonian's apartment from the middle of town. It's never a good idea to drink on an empty stomach, so you might as well order a platter of cheese and meats that you'll devour greedily because it's all so very good. Is it any surprise that, in our two day there, we became regulars?

Obviously, there was gelato too, perfect (even in February) from Grom. And maybe the best sandwich in recent memory, at 'ino, where every sandwich comes with a glass of wine (just as it should be).

But if I had to pick one meal, the one to remember, it would be dinner at La Giostra, picked by TNO well before we arrived. It's rare that I have felt quite so taken care of at a restaurant. We were greeted with champagne, brought an antipasti plate full of amazing delicacies I would have never known to order, and patiently talked through the finer points of the menu, with translation help from multiple waiters. There was also this amazing ritual with the wine, where it was decanted and swirled within an inch of its life, complete with flourishes only an Italian could pull off successfully.

We started with asparagus soup, velvety and flavorful, with the perfect contrast of crunch croutons.

As ambitious as I am, I can never handle both a primo piatto (first course—usually pasta) AND a secondo piatto (second course—meat), so CM and I decided to share one of each.

First, penne with pears and a gorgonzola cream sauce. Those are pistachios crumbled on top.

Then, osso bucco, so tender we barely needed a knife.

 I'm pretty sure I can go ahead and cross Italy off my LMB eats/Europe list, no?

All pictures by CM, obvs.

1 comment:

  1. Sounds delicious. Glad I'm full of food myself otherwise I'd get hungry reading your post.


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