Florence, Rome, Sienna suggestions.
I will be in Italy for week with my wife and I am looking for places to eat. I would love to hear any suggestions you might have. I have a similar post on the Spain/Portugal board as well. I will be there for a week and would like to hear about those.
I have just been to Siena and I was at this absolutely fabulous restaurant. It is in the Trattoria Papei, on piazza del Mercato, is very busy and they serve amazing food. come really hungry :-) the portions are very big. we drank their house wine which was good with the food and wery good for the price. the place is quite rustic and crammed with people so dont go if you are allergic to other people :-)
another good restaurant is Osteria Le Logge on via del Porrione http://www.osterialelogge.it which is a bit more upmarket and with a good wine list. the place is not so crammed but lacks a certain athmosphere. the dishes are modern versions of local cuisine as opposed to the first place, where the dishes are prepared by local people and the head chef is the grandmother of the house.
both places are not expensive and both require reservation, be it for the same day. in both restaurants, ask for a table near the window, otherwise you might be hot.
In Florence we ate twice at I Ghibellini (Piazza Di S. Pier Maggiore, 8). Great local cuisine, very reasonable, friendly service. Casual, lot's of locals. In Rome we really enjoyed Trattoria da Giggetto http://www.giggetto.it/ (Reservations recommended!) Haven't been to Sienna, but I imagine that it will be difficult to eat poorly!
In Siena, we had an excellent meal at Il Rialto. It is on Via del Rialto 4, a 3 minute walk from Il Campo. We had not heard much about this place before, but went there anyway trusting the recommendation of one of our friends.
Although the place was full of tourists like ourselves (very different from our friend's experience. He told us that Il Rialto was totally local), the food was outstanding. Simple and unpretentious. I had pici al porcino and trippa al pomodoro, and all excellent!!!
About restaurants in Florence and Rome, there are many postings already, which you can easily search on this board. If I add one more, it will be Trattoria la Casalinga in Florence. It is on Via de Michelozzi 9r, just off Piazza Santo Spirito. They serve not fancy, but honest, simple and basic Tuscan dishes at very reasonable prices. Reservations are a must. Or you had better get there earlier before the regulars hit the place. We got there on a Wednesday around 1 pm, and had to wait almost 1 hour.
I, too, have heard La Casalinga in Florence is great - next time! In another post (http://www.chowhound.com/topics/520712) I mentioned Trattoria Pallottino, a favorite. For more upscale food, try Pandemonio.
In Siena you have to go to gelateria Kopa Kabana. If you're a chocolate lover, try their Cioccolato Fendente. I am drooling just thinking about it!