Curious Appetite

Where to Eat in Florence

Better Ask a Chef- Damiano of Club Culinario Toscano Florence

photo credit: Silvio Palladino

Welcome to the very first post of Better Ask a Chef! This new category of posts where I interview my favorite chefs in the world, starting with Florence, to get tips on eating in the city to how to do things in kitchen better according to a chef. When I requested to meet with the chef of Club Culinario for this interview, I had prepared a series of questions, only for them to be crumpled by the wayside and totally taken through the ringer for anything having to do with the current state of Florence’s dining art.

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Restaurants in Florence- top picks of 2015

Polenta and ragu, artichokes and potato puree and ribollita…where’s the pizza and pasta you may ask?

It’s been a gluttonous year in this tiny city- and I’ve only scratched the surface. Florence is a TINY city, but there are nearly 3,000 eateries! I want to stay within normal BMI and cholesterol parameters, here! I’ve done my best to eat at as many places as possible, to meet the chefs, to see what was worth the almighty buck and also what was worth our time. Continue Reading

Aperitivo in Florence – UPDATED!

Photo Credit: Sam Engel (contact me to get in touch with Sam- he’s a great photographer!)

Man oh man, it’s been a painful few months knowing I had a very popular/read post just dying to be updated. Mostly, I wanted to update my article on Aperitivo in Florence because there were some spots that have gone horribly downhill and it took some personal visits to realize horrifically how disgusting they were in both terms of service and quality. It’s a real bummer when recommendations get outdated, usually due to a rise in popularity, If people catch on to a good place in Florence, it usually doesn’t stay secret for long (which should usually be a good thing!) Unless locales are prepared for the increased volume, they usually can’t keep up with providing consistent quality and service.

Here is the link to my updated post:

Aperitivo in Florence- a round-up

And while I was at it, I realized the article I wrote on Where to Eat in San Niccolo (the area near Piazzale Michelangelo) was also a bit outdated so I cleaned it up, with a realization that most places in that area suck. Florence, what is wrong with you?! (Sometimes) Continue Reading

An alternative guide to the "best" restaurants in Florence

Do you really want to eat from a blatant tourist menu’?

“Stuffing feathers up your ass does not make you a chicken” is one of my favorite quotes from Fight Club. Just because a thousand people with unproven eno-gastronomic credibility reviewed an eatery on tripadvisor as the best pizza in Florence, does not make it the best pizzeria in Florence.

I’m not saying 3rd party sites like tripadvisor don’t have their place or worth- it just seems to have become gospel for some food hunting travelers. I find that the people worth trusting online 1st are bloggers who live, have lived and/or continue to spend time/visit that place (and stay in the good graces of the locals there) or those who actually know food either by writing about food, knowing cooks, having taken culinary tours or classes and who aren’t bad cooks themselves. Like pasta- how can someone really recommend the best pasta if they’ve never made it themselves or understand the standards behind al dente? Continue Reading

New Wine Bar in Florence- Uva Nera

Drinking and eating (and documenting it all) at Uva Nera with Nardia of Lost in Florence (check out her travel website: http://www.lostinflorence.it)

Last year, I discovered a pretty chic gourmet nook in Florence smack dab in the historical center yet in a little backstreet that the massive hoards would have difficulty in finding. Everybody wants “off-the-beaten-path in Florence” in one of the most heavily stomped cities in Europe. If there was a literal representation of a quality food & wine bar off the beaten path in Florence, it was Uscio e Bottega:. Continue Reading

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