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First Night of Honeymoon in Florence

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TopCat May 3, 2007 03:04 PM

We have the first night in Florence and I really want to try Sostanza. But is it somewhat romantic and quaint or is it a touristy place that is a scene. Do they take reservations?Benci, Garga, Guscio and Cibrero are the other options but they get mixed reviews. Would Sostanza be the place to start a honeymoon? Thanks

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    Indy 67 RE: TopCat May 3, 2007 06:16 PM

    I've eaten in the restaurant -- but not in the room -- I'm about to recommend. I'm told the winner for the most-romantic place for honeymooners is the tower room of Osteria Cinghiale Bianco on Borgo Sant' Jacopo (Oltrarno). Although the restaurant's web site doesn't indicate that the tower room is a one-table space, that is the impression I got from a rhapsodic review by another honeymoon couple.

    While tourists have found out about the good food at this restaurant (and my husband and I fall into that category), the place is patronized by locals. I think the main section of the restaurant is attractive enough to satisfy your honeymoon dinner requirements, but I'd definitely contact the owners and find out about the tower room.

    http://www.cinghialebianco.it/eng/chi...

    FYI, Benci isn't the least bit romantic. Crowded tables both indoors and out. Great food, but not a first-night honeymoon dinner destination.

    2 Replies
    1. re: Indy 67
      jen kalb RE: Indy 67 May 3, 2007 06:48 PM

      sostanza iserves huge florentine steaks. sounds delicious, but not a romantic setting. and do you really want a huge heavy meal on the first night of your honeymoon visit? Really.

      Osteria Cinghiale Bianco will always be spoiled for me because of the differential treatment we received. A fraction of the amount of shaved truffles on my fettucine vs. a local sitting beside. Other dishes also werent that good, including florentine basics. The strozzopreti was, however. They'd probably do you well for a special meal.

      Ive not seen mixed reviews of Cibreo - they have several different venues though, with varying degrees of formality. Id consider them, certainly, for a special meal.

      1. re: jen kalb
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        TopCat RE: jen kalb May 3, 2007 07:12 PM

        have you heard about the restaurant Gustavino? thanks for the suggestion on OCB-will check it out

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      LotsC RE: TopCat May 4, 2007 01:30 AM

      I've always loved the Osteria de Benci it has a lovely atmosphere, relaxed, good food and slightly low key - it doesn't try too hard and after the hectic pace of a wedding and all the preplanning it should do very well...Congratulations and good Luck!

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        elc515 RE: TopCat May 4, 2007 07:07 AM

        We spent part of our honeymoon in Florence three years ago and it was wonderful! I know that you want to start your first night off with a great dinner, but may I suggest waiting until the second night for a special dinner? Our first night is always a bit of a blur from exhaustion and I don't enjoy myself as much as I should. I would suggest dinner at Terrazza Brunelleschi Restaurant in the Grant Hotel Baglioni. Beautiful views and great food! Very romantic. We love to have a drink before dinner at the SkyLounge which is located on the rooftop of the Hotel Continentale. Lovely views of the city. My other favorite thing to do is take a picnic lunch to the rose garden below Piazzale Michelangelo. We usually do this on our first day in Florence. Or, pack a bottle of wine and enjoy a drink while you watch the sun go down. It's a romantic spot that overlooks the city. Be prepared for a bit of a hike, but it's worth it! Have a wonderful trip!

        1 Reply
        1. re: elc515
          sgny RE: elc515 May 4, 2007 07:46 AM

          We ate at Osteria Cinghiale Bianco as well as Cibreo. We enjoyed both meals very much. In my opinion Cibreo is more romantic but with that comes the bigger price tag I just checked my folder and the bill was 197 Euros or 268 USD. There were two things at Cibreo that I will forever remember. A stew of calamari and chickpeas call zimino ( please correct me on the name) and an orange cheesecake for dessert. I'm getting goosebumps!!!! I do recall some sort of private tower/booth at Cinghiale Bianco and how cool it was. It definetly is a loduer more happening scence. Hey, everybody defines romance differently. I second elc515 on not doing it on the first night. You will be on sensory overload just roaming around the first night. There is no doubt you have to walk up to the Piazzale Michelangelo. We did it our first day there. We did the walk that was outlined in the DK Eyewitness travel guide. It involves hills and the steps to get you to the top. It will be a honeymoon moment to cherish forever. Enjoy and report back. Also, no matter how full you are from your meal, there is always room for gelato.

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          sambamaster RE: TopCat May 7, 2007 06:38 AM

          Cibreo is the spot, hands down. Some of the most interesting and well prepared food in the world, not just Florence. The owner, Fabio, has done his homework, and the results are unique. And the main restaurant is very romantic.
          Will be going there myself on saturday for the first night of my "honeymoon' (got married in Feb in front of 6000 naked people) and will be going the the Trattoria Cibreo behind, or next to now, the main room. The food is about 1/3 the price, not quite the same presentation or selection, but the food is identical...wine list shorter, share a table and meet some new people. the romance will continue later in the room, no? will hit Cibreo twice in our 4 days there. and will wear my cibreo gimme-cap. and if Fabio again offers to let me come in early in the morning to learn how to make their amazing sformatto di ricotta, I will not again refuse!
          heavenly.
          Sostanza ain't first night honeymoon material, though lots of fun. gruff waiters and a hurried feel won't make you want to linger, but the food is good.
          Another choice for the same trad menu is Omero up in the hills near Galileo's house. Nice place, great chow, romantic atmosphere, much more so than the white boar will ever be. It's a 10-15 minute cab ride from the center of town.

          1 Reply
          1. re: sambamaster
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            CJT RE: sambamaster May 8, 2007 02:57 PM

            Trattoria Cibreo serves a polenta dish (just polenta) which is the creamiest and most enjoyable one I ever ate. Order it as an antipasto dish or main course with a meat dish.

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