Tim Atkin, the writer of the article, is The Observer's wine critic and a Master of Wine, widely regarded as the top qualification in the wine world.
The article was more a wine review than a food review: he mentioned the dishes but said nothing more about them. I would not necessarily expect - or rely on - a restaurant review from a wine critic.
His knowledge of Tuscan food and Florence restaurants is certainly lacking, but I sometimes wonder whether it isn't a fairly common failing among the British. Some Brits just don't get it about Italian food (but a few have written masterfully about it), and for sheer pigheaded ignorance, it would be hard to top this article by a fashion writer (who should never have been allowed to write about food in the first place) in The Independent:
Oh dear, what a completely useless article that was. As a long time journalist, I can say with almost complete certainly that the article was written by a journalist that covers something other than food and wine, who was in Italy and wanted to write off his side trip to Florence.
Of course people go to Florence for the food, and most certainly the wine. And OF COURSE there are many many many other places in Florence that have great wine lists besides Enoteca Pinchiorri.
Although I have not been to Pane e Vino, the fact that no one else has either is a sign it may not be the best place in town. If you are looking for an enoteca with interesting food and extensive wine list then visit one of these places:
Antica Mescita di San Niccolo
Le Volpe e l'Uva
In addition most of the restaurants talked about places on this board have very extensive selections of wines from Tuscany.
Via Ghibellina, 87r, Florence, Tuscany 50122, IT
Via del Monte alle Croci, 10, Florence, Tuscany 50125, IT
Via delle Oche, 15, Florence, Tuscany 50122, IT
I've been reading The Economist for a long, long time. It is a great magazine, but unfortunately knows very little about food and wine.
When you see the partial paragraph (below) from the article, you understand why.
"Very few people go to Florence to eat and drink, at least not in the way that they go to Milan or Rome. This great Tuscan city is not as dull as Venice in terms of gastronomy, but—with the exception of the swish, but extremely pricey Enoteca Pinchiorri—the food is underwhelming. "