Untours Cafe

Hi, everyone!

Here on the Italian Untours team, we are getting exited about our launch of the new Florence Untour in March. I am fast at work on our guidebook, "Untouring Florence." When we revise our guidebooks over the years, we always do so with the benefit of Untourists' feedback, and your suggestions make our materials better! We have a nice list of restaurants to start, but I was wondering if any of you out there had some suggestions of your own. What are your favorite restaurants, caffes and gelaterie in Florence?

Just to get the conversation started, a couple of my favorite trattorie are Nella, Antico Noe, Casalinga and Borgo Antico.

Thanks for your input!
Andrea Szyper (Untours staff)

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Hate to divulge my special spot but it's Trattoria "il Porcospino" (the Porcupine), located by the Medici Chapel and Piazza San Lorenzo. It's open daily for lunch and dinner. It's so special because of the man in charge, Franco, who
just loves Texans, and I always take him a cap or tee shirt with a Texas emblem. Last year there were 3 of us for
dinner and he wouldn't let us order - he just brought what he thought we would like and it was outstanding. He
frequently gives me a bottle of wine and last year he presented us with il Porcospino tee shirts. If anyone goes
there, be sure and tell him that Maria Louisa from Texas sent them, and they'll be in for a treat! The folks at the
Pendini will make reservations.

There's also a small deli-like place on the street leading to the Ponte Vecchio, I think near the corner of Via Por S. Maria and v. vacchereccia. Lots of good salads plus entrees and very reasonable. A good place for a light lunch
if you're planning on a big dinner meal, or vice-versa. Not many tables, so folks should get there well before noon
if they want a place to sit. (The salads, etc., are visible from the sidewalk.)
Thanks, Mary Lou! I can't wait to check this one out!
When are you going, Andrea? Why not make it in May when I'll be first at Elisabetta's and then at Anna's. I'll alert Franco to take good care of you!
Not sure when I will get over. (We fly on airline comps, so we are at their mercy!) Would love to go in May and to meet you after all these years!

Whatever happens, I'll share some of the Florence restaurant suggestions with you as I edit the list!

A presto!
Andrea
It's been a decade since we were last there, but we loved Trattoria Mario just off the Mercato Centrale. It's open for lunch only. They sit you wherever there are seats available. Our first time we sat with some local workmen who shared their wine with us. (it was quite good - we bought it ourselves later!) Later we ended up with other travelers a couple of times. Oh, and if you don't finish your bottle of wine, they'll put your name on it and keep it for you. As i recall they have a limited menu that changes from day to day, but we loved everything we had there. (Ate there 3 or 4 times in the week we were in town).
Hi, Nan! Trattoria Mario is still there, and is on my list. I haven't been there but have heard about it from some of my favorite Florentines. Sounds like the real deal for sure! Glad to hear your experiences! I am eager to have lunch there on my next trip. Thanks a million!
In October 2007 we met up with a friend of someone in our group. The friend is in her late 30s, is an artist and leads bike tours in Tuscany. She's lived in Florence for several years. She guided our group for most of a day in Florence. She took us to lunch at Coquinarius, one block from the Duomo at Via delle Oche 15. The chef is a South African who offers traditional Tuscan items with a twist. Then gelato at Gelateria Carabe, Via Ricasoli 60 near the Accademia, and mentioned in guide books. When some of us returned to Florence for more of a visit, we had a good and relatively inexpensive lunch at the picturesque Café Pepo on Via Rosina 6, just off the Piazza Mercato. Everyone else in the place was Italian and the service was attentive. Entrees went from 8-15 euros.
Thank you! Some good tips here. I will be eager to check them out myself in the fall.
Of course, you'll be fat as a pig if you try them all, Andrea! But I'm keeping a list of all the suggestions, too!
But, hey! It's all in the name of research. :)

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