Curious Appetite

craft cocktails

Finding Craft Cocktails in Florence

credit: Silvio Palladino Photography

Craft cocktails is such a buzzword these days that I almost resent using it- and loads of bars are throwing it around like confetti at a wedding and quality drinking has become another one of those pretentious trends…or maybe fancy drinks have always been pretentious? But after being in Bologna for the last few weeks, my appreciation has grown for the craft cocktail scene in Florence. By no means better than Milan or Rome, or even Turin, but it’s a collaborative community with good people who do their homework.

If you don’t like reading and just want a list, hit up my guide for Eater: The best places for cocktails in Florence 

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Week 2: more tortellini, cocktail fails and Bologna’s last Mortadella artisan

Pasquini’s Mortadella is hardly Bologna

Quick brief: I’m in Bologna for a month. So why you in Bologna? the food! change of scene! Putting my precious Italian degree into practice/remembering why I studied it in the first place- because I am fascinated by Italy! I wish I could immerse myself in ever major city/region like this for a month or 2!

Moving on…so part of the quest for this trip is to find the best tortellini in Bologna and to find someone willing to teach me how to make it. As in my last post, I’ve learned some clues as to what makes tortellini good, but wonder if I have a proper benchmark. In Florence, I’ve worked with cooking classes led by mammas and grandmas, some with Emilia-Romagna roots. Handmade pasta- down. But what about the broth or the filling? And even working with the culinary gatekeepers themselves, how does one really know a good tortellini? Is this truly a subjective quest? Continue Reading

Florence is doing a Cocktail Week! April 11th-17th 2016

Photo Credit: Florence Cocktail Week

Is this London? Is this Milan? No! It’s Florence! The teeny tiny Tuscan village town that is doing its best to strut its fancy stuff in the modern food and drink arena!

This post should come with a disclaimer and a slight criticism that pretty much everything cool that happens/opens here is extremely cryptic and difficult to get concise information for. Is it because they are trying to invoke the “speakeasy” spirit? Boh!

Alas, this is just one of the many quirks of the Florentine culture: only those in the know or who know those in the know actually know when there are cool things like a friggin’ cocktail week happening.

Why so critical, you ask? It’s not like your blog is all that organized! Fair enough! But hey, I lead really unique food & drink crawls, such as an Aperitivo drink & food tour in Florence which you should take advantage of during cocktail week (mention this post or read the very end for a tip for a special deal) 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

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