Florence, Italy, attracts millions of visitors every year to take in the splendor of the Duomo, browse the art at the Uffizi Gallery, and walk the Ponte Vecchio. The crowds have their drawback, says local food writer and Curious Appetite Travel creator Coral Sisk, who cautions that even in this food-obsessed corner of the world, "disappointment is more common than you’d think." Still, there’s plenty of exceptional eating to be done.
Twenty years ago Florence had only one Michelin-starred restaurant (today’s three-star Enoteca Pinchiori). The rest was mostly mom-and-pop traditional. It’s impressive, then, to see how dynamic the food scene has become since. Today you can find dumplings, Persian kebabs, and no fewer than seven Michelin-starred restaurants in one of the world’s best-preserved UNESCO cities.
Still, at its heart, Florence is a hub of Tuscan cuisine, and the city is famous for its signature dishes like ribollita soup and bistecca Fiorentina T-bone steak. Street-food culture is alive and well here, gifting the city another signature dish, one which taps into the locals’ love for organ meats: lampredotto. "Specifically, the fourth stomach compartment of the cow is a delicacy in Florence," says Sisk. "Traditionally, this humble protein is slathered and sandwiched in a bread roll and sold from food trucks in bustling squares and boulevards."
Looking for what’s new and hot? Head to the heatmap. But for the essential dining experiences, in geographical order, read on.
Editor’s Note: Eater is not updating international maps at this time given disruptions to global travel during the COVID-19 crisis.
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