Tuesday, August 9, 2011

Travel Guide: The best places to dine in Florence

Florence was once the capital of Italy and its gem during the Renaissance period. A lot has changed since its glorious medieval years but it has remained to be a busy center for business today. It has been a financial powerhouse during those times.
Florence, Italy is a place of extraordinary beauty and the surroundings has inspired its people to look beautiful. It is home to big design names like Ferragamo and Gucci and other brands. It is also home to designer eateries and gourmet restaurants.
We list down some of the best restaurants in Florence, Italy:
Il Palagio at the Four Seasons Florence
The chef of the Il Palagio at the Four Seasons in Florence has discovered that the best food from the region are basically the traditional favorites like beef fillet prepared with porcini mushrooms. The offerings of sweets are more modern though like caramel chocolate inside a hazelnut-chocolate cylinder plus espresso zabaglione. Other wonderful dishes include the red chicory lasagnetted and roasted suckling pig or Maialino.
The price of wine at this place though is a bit over than the usual so go somewhere else for some good wine if you are on a budget.
Borgo Santo Pietro
Just outside of Siena, this medieval hotel building is set amid fruit orchards, wild flowers, herbs, and flower gardens. The old Tuscan villa went thru a major renovation and was turned into an 11 bedroom isolated getaway a few minutes from Palazzetto. Once you are booked you are also guaranteed to their famous restaurant which only serves hotel guests.
The food they serve is exquisite making the restaurant deserving of Michelin stars. The menu is impressive lining up dishes like the tuna tartare in old balsalmic vinegar, tortellin with succulent lobster, and turbot with spinach and pumpkin puree. Another must try to cap the meal is the chocolate fondant served with yogurt sorbet.
Cavolo Nero
The ambiance exudes simplicity but this restaurant is a favorite dining place of locals seeking traditional and experimental Italian cooking. It is located in a quiet corner of San Frediano far from the touristy spots of Florence.
The menu spotlights handmade pasta, gnoochi, and a long list of affordable wine.

Dolci Dolcezza
The who’s who of the rich and fashionable of Florence comes to Dolci Dolcezza when they need great dessert for a dinner party. The art deco inspired cafe serves the most wonderful tart in this corner of the world. They serve the tarts topped with wild berries, raspberries, or strawberries. They also serve the marvelous cornetti filled cream similar to croissants.
Come early if you want to get a share of the tarts. They really sell very quickly.
Trattoria Mario
This trattoria only serves lunch only. It is located near the market of San Loenzo and simplicity is the key to their success. It is a none pretentious menu serving the simplest and best Florentine classics. The prices are very reasonable compared to other fancy restaurants plus the flavors are a lot better. Try the calf’s liver, tomato bread soup, and tortelli al ragu.
Trattoria Sostanzail Troia
This trattoria that has been operating since 1869 is always packed to the brim with diners. You’ll enjoy great food while seated on a wooden bench which earned it the nick Troia. Celebrities from all over know this place for the best T-bone porterhouse in this corner of Italy. You must also try their roasted chicken served with white beans.
It is best to call well in advance so you will be guaranteed a seat.
Osteria Tornabuoni
This restaurant is aptly located at the Palazzo Tornabuoni which dates back to the 15th century. The menu was developed by world class chefs that has had twenty five years of experience in the food business and restaurants. They only prepare anything Tuscany using only local ingredients such as aged pecorino. Never step out of this dining place without trying their sliced fennel served with aged pecorino.
Trattoria Coco Lezzone
People go here for great dishes like a rolled up veal stuffed with vegetables and meat loaf prepared with basil. The steak Florentine is the best but you have to mention that you want to order that when you make the reservations. You also need to try their salted cods which is only prepared during Fridays.