New Event: Art Walk + Renaissance Mixology Oct 9th 2015 4pm

Aperitivo Tour with Curious Appetite

One of Mayday’s tasty herbal provisions- come and try this Friday October 9th 2015

Hello readers! I’m quickly writing to let you know I will be teaming up with art and history expert Alexandra Lawrence for a special Walk + Talk event this Friday October 9th!

Here is the event details from Alexandra’s Facebook page:

Walks and Talks Renaissance Art + Aperitivo

“How did people really eat, drink, live and love during the Renaissance? We will attempt to answer this with a visit to Palazzo Davanzati and the exhibition “Il sole in casa”, which explores daily life through Italian ceramics. Different domestic objects in the palazzo—ranging from furniture to famous 14th c. frescoed stories on the bedroom walls—illustrate gender roles, home décor, food culture, the role of the minor arts and artisans in Renaissance homes, and much more.

Walks and Talks Renaissance Art + Aperitivo Mayday

After the visit, join us for a private guided tasting of Renaissance elixirs by Florence’s most seasoned and fascinating mixologist at Mayday. Go back in time to imbibe historical medicinal liqueurs, house-made essences, Renaissance potions and potent concoctions, all paired with artisan cheeses that were nibbled during the same time period. We will be accompanied by local food blogger Curious Appetite (that’s me!) who is on top of the contemporary food and drink scene in town and who will give us a deeper understanding of the cocktail and elixir culture of Florence’s most defining era. Not to be missed!”

For those of you in town and would like to combine a fascinating art walk lead by one of the most sought out art history experts in Florence (Alexandra) with a potion stop to imbibe in some Renaissance mixology at Florence’s truly speakeasy craft cocktail lounge, contact me or Alexandra to RSVP

details: Friday October 9th 2015. Time: 4-7pm location: meeting point will be released to all upon RSVP

cost: Contact for inclusive pricing for the art walk and the post-walk Renaissance-themed aperitivo. This event is private and we get exclusive access to Mayday and special drinks off the menu, as well as various tastings from their mixology lab. There will be light food pairings included.

inclusions: A guided fused art and food/drink walk with 2 local experts with a truly unique theme!

For more information, don’t hesitate to get in touch! Space is limited- reserve your spot today.

In your quest for time travel (and good booze),

Curious Appetite

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Trattoria Coco Lezzone (Florence, Italy): Mixed feelings


By a fateful accident of texts exchanged between me and a pal we ended up dining at Coco Lezzone for what should have been a no-nonsense weekday lunch date. I suggested Coco Filippo and said pal replied “oh, you must mean Coco Lezzone!” Since I never heard of this trattoria before, truth be told, I wrote off Filippo and said to Lezzone we go! Continue reading

New Opening: Locale on Via delle Seggiole (Florence, Italy)


smokey. mezcal. negroni. And I usually yuck at tequila- not at Locale on Via delle Seggiole.

A recent fixation of mine has been with craft cocktails, for many reasons. Mostly for an article I was doing research for, but also because I love them. It goes without saying that there is an art of being a barman. In addition to the product, but also the sort of social interaction and place involved with the ritual. If we look at old sitcoms, such as Cheers and even the Simpsons, the bar or the pub was a place where you could let it all hang out. Your barman is your confidant, your hooch peddler and the one who will banter with you when you have no one else to- and never judge you no matter how much whiskey and lager you sling back. Continue reading

Florence’s new wave of good cocktail bars

Eater Vermouths and Bitters

Check out my piece on craft cocktails in Florence for!

Why hello! Long time no peeps, tweets or posts. Well, not so true. I blurt out things here and there whether it’s a recipe or an event, but I’ve been quiet on the food and drink “digest” front for many reasons and one of them was working really hard on some freelance articles, such as a recent piece I wrote for

Read on: Florence’s Revival of Craft Cocktails

In addition to starting to write for awesome publications like Eater, I’ve been busy with hunting down the latest and best in food and drink, leading tours, “researching” and following my curiosity down the rabbit hole. A most fulfilling development is that I’ve been taking private wine lessons with one the most revered sommeliers/wine professionals in the industry. I have so many ideas for new posts such as digesting these wine lessons with food pairing ideas, creating new food and drink lists and experimenting more in the kitchen. Alas, my brain is on the edge of being toasted. Continue reading

{Aperitivo Snack} Fig, Ricotta and Balsamic Crostini

my kind of aperitivo snack

my kind of aperitivo snack

I love figs. I love seasonality and I love food. Italy, is decidedly the best place on earth for all three of those things. What is better than enjoying delicious food and a beautiful country? Despite all the naysayers, trolls and disgruntled people who lament the perils of Italy, I stand firm that Italy is a country worth saving and not giving up on. I am inspired by this every time I bite into something wonderful, such as the luscious figs that started to creep in at the end of summer and sprawling the markets. Continue reading

Aperitivo + Dinner Event: Vogue’s Fashion Night Out September 17th 2015


(credits: “The Fashion Club.”)

Vogue’s Fashion Night Out is basically the night where I realize how much I am not “with it,” my outfits probably make no sense and that I should eat rice cakes and fat free yogurt for the rest of my life. It also painfully reminds me how much I cannot wear heals and how Florentines put the icing on the glitz and glamour cake. I may sound like an embittered Daria, but let’s face it- Italians and their well-dressed immaculate put-togetherness makes us question our outwardly presented existence. Unless you are one of those people who moved here and learned how to emulate the well-dressed gods who grace these Renaissance streets, you probably know exactly what I am talking about. To be diplomatic at best, it is a night filled with flashy events, openings and shows, albeit shoving along the jam packed boulevards getting from one palazzo to the next. Continue reading

Zucchini flower recipe: Frittata-style (fiori di zucca)

zucchini flower frittata (fiori di zucca)

zucchini flower frittata (fiori di zucca)

My love affair started with Italy 10 years ago. My love for food started as soon as I could say spoon. For those of you new to my blog, it is called “curious appetite” because I wanted to write about all the things I was curious about: food, places, drinks, cultures and such. If something is unique, I want to order it. If I see something new and/or seasonal in the market, I want to cook it. Like finding fiori di zucca/zucchini flowers. I’ll try anything at least once. Seize the day- there are millions of flavors out there in the world waiting to be loved and loathed! One of the intentions of my blog too was to write about restaurants I was curious about. I wanted to write about places that did something different and with grit. And to give my humble opinion about eateries that were on everyone’s lips and yelping finger tips. So here it is- a mix of experimenting in the kitchen and at eateries around the world, mostly the US and in Europe. Continue reading

In defense of food in Florence


take note.

I realize that for foodies from countries like America, Tuscan food in Florence can seem confusing. Recently, I took a quick stroll through common criticisms on sites like yelp and tripadvisor and decided to respond. These misunderstandings can be avoided, and I question the information out there educating people about what real Tuscan food and Italian food culture is about. Yes, Italian food includes plates of creamy gnocchi, carb-rich lasagna, pillow-y charred pizza and silky tagliatelle pasta and rich ragu’. But it is also a culture of regional foods, simple eating with little condiment. People eat out somewhat frequently in Italy, whether for a panino on the go or a quick plate of sliced roast beef and vegetables on lunch break. These meals are consumed casually at simple local cafes, hole in the walls or neighborhood trattorias. The grey area is that everyday Italians rarely go out for nicer, gourmet meals at atmospheric restaurants raved about in culture and leisure publications/blogs which travelers tend to chase after, giving a false impression of what the local eating culture is truly like. Continue reading

Where to go for the best gelato in Florence (Summer 2015 Edition)

my sugar gelato

Where oh where does one find the best gelato in Florence…(beside my instagram page virtually dripping with gelato). It’s more difficult than you think for finding the good s***, albeit being among a sea of gelaterie in the city. People sometimes ask me “Why is there so much gelato in Florence?”

In general, there is a lot of gelato in Italy. However I must say that Florence has a particular fondness of gelato because it is said to be the birthplace of gelato. On food tours, we chat about the key figures of gelato’s beginnings: Cosimo Ruggieri, Bernardo Buontalenti and Francesco Procopio (Francesco was actually from Sicily and this is where the gelato origin wars start to ensue). As one of my guests said recently “basically we’ve learned that Florence invented everything.” Exactly. I mean, how can you not boast a city that gave the world the Italian language, gelato and the negroni? Continue reading

Tuscan Recipe- Panzanella Bread Salad

panzanella blog

Bread salad? Yes.

I wonder if people coming to Florence or other destinations in Tuscany realize what Tuscan cuisine is and what it isn’t.

Tuscan cuisine is a complex yet simple beast. Frankly put, it is not pizza and pasta. There are flatbread pizzas (schiacciata) and ancient recipes for some pastas (maccheroni alla cacciagione). But pizza is native to Naples and pasta is home in the Emilia Romagna.

If I had to sum up Tuscan cuisine, it would be the art of not wasting anything- down to the last stale bread crumb and 4th cow’s stomach, drizzled with local fresh olive oil. Continue reading