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Florence, a city of art and history, is not just an open-air museum but also a culinary paradise. This Italian gem offers a range of delicious dishes capable of satisfying even the most discerning palates. If you’re planning a trip to Florence and wondering what to eat, you’re in the right place.

As you explore the city, you’ll soon realize that food is an integral part of Florentine culture and that every meal is an experience to savor. From the iconic Florentine steak, a succulent and tender cut of beef cooked to perfection, to the creamy and indulgent Bontalenti Cream that will transport you to dessert heaven, Florence has options for everyone.

What Can You Eat in Florence?

In Florence, you can find a wide selection of delicious local dishes to try:

  • One of the most famous dishes is the Florentine steak, a succulent beef steak cooked to perfection.
  • Ribollita, a vegetable and stale bread soup.
  • Pici all’aglione, a type of thick pasta dressed with a tasty tomato ragù.
  • Lampredotto: a sandwich made from the fourth stomach of a cow, slow-cooked in a flavorful broth and served with green sauce.
  • Truffles: Florence is located in the heart of the truffle region. Try traditional dishes with truffles like pasta, risotto, or fried eggs for a luxurious culinary experience.
  • Tuscan wines: pair your meals with some excellent Tuscan wines such as Chianti, Brunello di Montalcino, or Vernaccia di San Gimignano for a complete culinary experience in Florence.

The Iconic Florentine Steak: Every Carnivore’s Dream

When it comes to Florentine cuisine, a dish that stands out above all others is the iconic steak. This delicious bone-in steak is every carnivore’s dream, known for its incredible flavor and tenderness. The secret to its goodness lies in the quality of the meat and the traditional cooking method.

The Florentine steak is typically prepared with locally sourced Chianina beef, known for its superior taste and texture. The steak is cut thick, usually from 1.5 to 2 inches, and cooked over an open flame or a hot grill: the result is a perfectly seared exterior with a juicy and tender center.

Traditionally, the Florentine steak is served rare or medium-rare to preserve its natural flavors. It is simply seasoned with salt, pepper, and sometimes a drizzle of Tuscan extra virgin olive oil: the simplicity of the seasoning enhances the quality of the meat.

When you visit Florence, be sure to treat yourself to this culinary masterpiece. Many local restaurants specialize in serving the Florentine steak: discover our menu here!

Where to Eat Steak in Central Florence?

If you’re looking for a place to eat steak in central Florence, you have many options to choose from. Florence is famous for its culinary delights, and the Florentine steak is one of the city’s most renowned dishes. You can find many restaurants in the center of Florence that offer this Tuscan specialty.

At Braciere Malatesta, you can find authentic Florentine steak prepared only with Chianina beef. Moreover, our Bisteccheria Trattoria offers an authentic atmosphere and besides serving high-quality steak, it also provides many options from the trattoria and pizzeria menu.

Ribollita: A Hearty Tuscan Soup to Warm the Soul

If you’re looking for a comforting and hearty dish in Florence, especially during winter, Ribollita is the quintessential Tuscan comfort food.

This traditional soup has been consumed by locals for centuries: originally a poor man’s dish, ribollita is called so because it was traditionally prepared by reheating the previous day’s leftover vegetable soup and adding stale bread to thicken it.

Today, however, ribollita is prepared fresh using seasonal vegetables such as black cabbage, carrots, and onions, and with the addition of cannellini beans.

The soup is simmered slowly to allow the flavors to meld together, resulting in a rich and flavorful broth.

It is then served with plenty of Tuscan extra virgin olive oil.

One of the best things about Ribollita is that it’s even better the next day: the flavors continue to meld overnight, making it the perfect dish to enjoy as leftovers.

Pasta Perfection: Exploring Florentine First Courses

No visit to Florence would be complete without sampling some of the city’s incredible pasta dishes.

A popular Tuscan pasta dish is pici all’aglione, typical of Siena, which features thick hand-rolled spaghetti dressed with a savory tomato and garlic sauce.

But what is aglione?

If you’ve never been to Tuscany, you may not have tasted it: aglione is a prized and particular type of garlic cultivated in the areas around Siena with special characteristics; in fact, despite giving flavor, it has excellent digestibility and leaves very little bad breath.

When it comes to pasta in Florence, freshness is key. Many restaurants make pasta in-house using locally sourced ingredients, ensuring you get the best flavor and texture possible.

The pici you find at Braciere Malatesta are strictly homemade by us.

Peposo del Brunelleschi

Peposo is one of the quintessential Tuscan dishes.

It originated in Florence (although many argue in Impruneta) during the construction of Brunelleschi’s dome, the magnificent Cathedral of Florence, an imposing and characteristic work of the city of difficult construction and direction especially for the time.

It is said that the Imprunetini, the lords of Impruneta, who came to work on the construction and were responsible for the production of tiles and terracotta, would cook beef in the oven with wine and pepper.

Pepper was very expensive at that time, it is said that it was Brunelleschi’s idea because spices were reserved for nobles and wealthy people: the addition of this particular ingredient provided physical and psychological help, a natural stimulant for workers to encourage them in very hard work.

Crostini di Fegato

Crostini di Fegatini or Tuscan black crostini are the typical Tuscan appetizer, especially found in Florence.

Simple and tasty, the basic recipe is a preparation halfway between a ragù and a pâté based on chicken livers, anchovies, and capers.

The best way to start a lunch or dinner with friends.

Tuscan Schiacciata: Be Careful Calling it Focaccia!

One of the most beloved bread specialties in the city is Schiacciata, a thin and crunchy focaccia made from simple ingredients: flour, water, yeast, salt, and extra virgin olive oil. The dough is rolled thin and then topped with olive oil and salt before being baked to perfection.

The result is a crispy and flavorful bread that pairs perfectly with cold cuts, cheeses, or simply enjoyed on its own.

Popular fillings include raw ham, pecorino cheese, truffle sauce, and arugula.

Truffles and Tuscan Cuisine: An Exquisite Combination

If you’re a fan of truffles, you’re in luck when visiting Florence. Truffles are a prized ingredient in Tuscan cuisine and can be found in many traditional dishes throughout the region. A popular truffle dish in Florence is tagliolini al tartufo: the earthy flavor of the truffle pairs perfectly with the richness of the pasta. Truffles can also be found in other dishes such as risottos, omelets, and even on pizza.

What Are Florentine Desserts

No meal in Florence is complete without indulging in a sweet treat. An iconic dessert is cantucci alle mandorle (although they can now be found in numerous variations), strictly to be dipped in Vin Santo: a true delight. Another dessert to try is schiacciata alla fiorentina (yes, it’s called like the savory schiacciata): a soft sponge cake flavored with orange zest and dusted with powdered sugar.

Of course, no visit to Florence would be complete without tasting gelato, as they say it was born right here. Gelaterias can be found on almost every corner and offer a wide variety of flavors made with fresh and natural ingredients. A must-try: Bontalenti cream.

Which Local Markets to Visit in Florence

If you want to immerse yourself in Florence’s culinary delights, be sure to visit the local markets. These lively hubs of activity are a paradise for food lovers, offering everything from fresh produce to artisan cheeses and cured meats.

A popular market is the Mercato Centrale, located in the heart of Florence and within walking distance from Braciere Malatesta. Here you’ll find a wide variety of stalls selling everything from fresh fruits and vegetables to gourmet sandwiches and pastries. The market also has a second floor entirely dedicated to food stands, where you can taste dishes from different regions of Italy.

Another must-visit market is the Mercato di Sant’Ambrogio, which offers a more authentic and local experience. Here you’ll find vendors selling fresh fish, meat, cheeses, and other specialty products. It’s the perfect place to stock up on ingredients for a picnic or gather supplies for a delicious homemade meal.

Florence is truly a culinary paradise: this city offers an incredible range of culinary delights, with each bite taking you deeper into the rich flavors and history of Tuscan cuisine.