I will be traveling to Florence next week to study for 2 months. I understand that they have some of the most spectacular food in the world over there. Im looking to try out all the best restaurants Florence has to offer. Any suggestions?
I had one of the best dining experiences in Florence. I'm no critic, and cannot name different spices/ingredients in food, but I do know good food when I taste it.
Try a place called il latini, near the duomo area. They have two seatings a night, and people swarm around the entrance. An old lady (presumably the owner) comes out and picks who gets to go inside. If you're a large party you can get your own table, but we were 2 girls and were seated at a table with 8 others. It was 5 courses, and pretty much a fixed menu. They let you choose between 2-3 choices for an 2 appetizers /pasta/meat/dessert. The staff was young, and spoke english as well. There were many study abroad students there. Our waiter was great, he explained the whole menu to us, and told us what to choose. It was one of the best meals I've ever had. They also have huge jugs of house wine on the table. Towards the end of your meal this older chubby man (probably the owner's son) comes around and writes you your bill on the spot. As people started to leave, the owner and the waiter came to our table and brought over a bottle of lemoncello. They sat down and started drinking with us and brought out more dessert. I believe our whole bill was 40Euros, whereas others had been charged that amount per person.
We asked the guys at il latini where to go the next day to eat, and they recommended osteria del porcellino, near the golden boar statue. I had the sea bass. delicious!
Procacci on Via Tornabuoni for a glass of wine and a truffle panino
Trattoria Angiolino on Via S. Spirito
Ristorante Da Padellina in Strada in Chianti, a small town approximately 20 minutes outside of Florence
Camillo Trattoria on Borgo S. Jacopo
If you have a car:
Daytrip to Lucca to have lunch at Buca di S.Antonio on Via della Cervia
Daytrip to Panzano to have lunch at Antica Macelleria Cecchini (famous butcher shop with a small restaurant attached)
I just returned from a weekend there visiting a florentine friend. We had a spectacular meal at Cave di Maiano in the hills above Florence (near Fiesole). I had plans to write about that meal and a couple others--we left town for part of the time--but haven't had time. But the meat they serve both bistecca and tagliata are so far above anything I've had in Florence proper (in addition to several trips there, we lived there for five weeks a couple years ago). Also, the pappa pomodoro was terrific and the new owner, Francesco, is at once hilarious and charming. I can't recommend it highly enough.
Be sure to do a "Search this board" search for Florence. You will find many, many suggestions and comments about dining in Florence have been made here over the past 6-12 months. The food is Florence can be quite good, but I certainly would not consider it to be "the most spectacular food in the world," or even in Italy.