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Fiona

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    http://www.fionalapham.com
  1. I just started working at a new restaurant in the center of Florence and all of rest of the cooks told me they think La Pergola is by far the best restaurant in Italy. It is our plan to go to eat there all togeather sometime in the next few months. After reading your review I am even more excited. Thank you very much for such a thoughtful piece.
  2. I have been living in Florence for about five years now, and thought that I would weigh in with a few of my favorites. For Fish: Ristorante da Stefano: This restaurant has been around for while, and though it has opened and closed a few times it is still known as one of the best in Florence. Their business card proudly proclaims “Solo pesce, solo fresco, solo la sera” Only fish, only fresh, only the evening. The restaurant is in Galluzo, near the Firenze Certosa exit from the A1. It is sparsely decorated and truly concentrates on the food, my husband and I went there last week and had the mixed fish plate, which had oysters, crab, snails, clams, and various shrimp served with a variety of sauces. The wine list is quite good and gives many options in the 10-20 euro range. The plate cost 70 euro and was more than enough food for the both of us. Delicious and very good prices for fish in Florence. Via Senese, 271 Galluzzo (fi) Tel: 055 2322618 www.ristorantedastefano.it Reservations Recommended. Fuor d’acqua: The heavyweight in the Florentine fish scene at the moment. The ambiance is elegant, the place is huge, and the food amazing. A little expensive but worth it, they fly the fish in fresh from the Mediterranean Sea every day. The wine list is long, and he antipasto tasting is wonderful. Via Pisana, 37r Firenze. Tel: 055 222299 Reservations Strongly Recommended For Truffles: Osteria Delle Tre Panche: Exactly as the name suggests Osteria of the three benches is just that. Three small table with benches all around line the walls of this tiny restaurant. The menu is large and almost everything very good, but the truffle menu is the worth the fifteen minute walk from the center. The tortelli stuffed with fresh pecorino in a truffle cream sauce melts in your mouth in such a way that you will want to eat truffles for everyday for the rest of your life. Via a Pacinotti, 32r Tel:055583724 Reservations Recommended For a Really Special Time: Rossini: Though the price may put you off at first, the food and atmosphere are worth every penny. I have been there five times (every time my husband asks what I want for my birthday or Christmas, a dinner at Rossini is my answer), and every time has been a memorable meal. The best thing about Rossini, besides the arched ceilings, flawless service, and long, long wine list, is that each course is like opening a present. The menu may say one thing, but what arrives in front of you is something completely re-imagined. My dream job as a chef is to one day work at Rossini for Chef Assunto Migliore. I am usually not a huge fan of molecular styled cuisine, but when it is done right it is sublime. Lungarno Corsini, 4, 50123 Firenze Tel: 0552399224 www.ristoranterossini.it Reservations strongly recommended. La Tenda Rossa: Never been here, but I’ve heard it’s fabulous. Piazza del Monumento, 9/14 50020 Cerbaia in Val di Pesa (Fi) Tel: 055 826132 For An Adventure Into The Countryside: Enoteca la sosta del Rossellino: Set in a tiny piazza in Settingano this small, and charming restaurant has incredible gnocchi made without flour, and many other yummy Tuscan style dishes with a Sicilian influence. The view of Florence is amazing; the proprietor is the waiter and also a sommelier. His daughter is the chef. The feeling is homey and the price isn’t bad. Via del Rossellino, 2r, 50135 Settignano (fi) Tel: 055697245 La Sosta del Gusto (Castello del Trebbio): Set hills to the south east of Florence this new restaurant has some the best food I’ve eaten in Florence. The theme is updated Tuscan, and the menu changes with the season every fifteen days. The bistecca is also the best I’ve ever had. It is choice meat from a farm very near the restaurant and is cooked over wood. If I could choose one restaurant for reasonable prices, and amazing food this would be it. Via Santa Brigida 11, I’m not sure about the number, but I’ll update it as soon as I find it. Hope these recommendations come in handy!
  3. Fiona

    How to Really Visit Firenze

    Florence is in the art, the buidings, the food, and in the people, though the people are hard to see these days in the center, and if they are there they are stressed from tourist overload. The way to feel the real Florence in to get out of it. Almost all the people who once lived in the center now live in outskirts, which keep getting farther and farther away. Visit Ponte Sieve, Santa Brigida (Beautiful monestary with no tourists), Empoli, Impruneta, even in Scandicci, one of the more industrial areas of the city there are left-over from the romantic Italia of our dreams; places like a butcher shop where the butcher raises his own pigs, and makes all his own products. Take a bus, get out of the city and into the life. Better restaurants with more traditional flair are also to be found in the hills around the town.
  4. Fiona

    One or Two Meals in Paris

    Thankyou everyone for all the wonderful suggestions...alot of material to go through. I let you know which one I pick and how it turned out!
  5. Fiona

    One or Two Meals in Paris

    I am headed to Paris in two weeks. I am going to be accompanied by my Italian boyfriend who has been saving his first trip to Paris for a really special time. He is turning thirty the weekend we will be there, and I can afford one really great dinner...but which restaurant to choose? Help please...
  6. Wednesday night.. India, in Fiesole, Italy Wonderful...mixed antipasti, chicken tandorri so tender my mouth watered, goat vindaloo so spicy my nose watered, spinach and cheese, awful wine, good coffee, and even better grappa. Accadamia, Piazza San Marco, Florence Okay food...crostini with chicken liver, and an assortment of meats, tortillini stuffed with bland ricotta and spinach with a porcini-truffle sauce Country restaurant...oesteria cant remember the name...outside Florence Polenta crostini with onions and pancetta, pici with duck ragu. MMMM
  7. Fiona

    Gelato in Florence

    Just reconfirming Vivoli...which is just off the piazza of santa croce. If you are standing facing the church it is behind you in an allyway running parallel to the via benci. Try the RISO. I ate at Vivoli for four months almost every evening after dinner, my five other roomates and I would troop down there even if it was freezing cold. Never had anything better than the RISO!
  8. Restaurants...finding new ideas from all different ethnicities.
  9. Love! Bourdain Iron Chef Cast Thomas Keller(Does he count?) Jeffrey Steingarten Bourdain Don't Love! Emeril Bobby Flay
  10. Fiona

    Philly restaurants

    Marakesh, Marakesh, Marakesh. This place is great 20$ for all 5-7 courses. Need reservations, located at the low numbers on south street. Lithegow st?You knock on the door to get in to the place. All the tables are near to the ground and you get the authentic eating with your hands moroccan feel.
  11. I lived in Florence for 4 months with a guy from Florence, and needless to say I learned alot about the Florentine restaurants. Above all, the best place we went was called Perseus. There are actually two of them one in Fiesole, and one just outside of the city center. Either one will be easy to get to if you just hop in a taxi and say Perseus. There were no tourists at this restaurant, and it is possible to sit inside or outside. There is usually a pretty long wait, but trust me it's worth it. They have a good wine list, and some very fresh simple pastas (I had Linguini with fresh squash flowers). But the specialty is fiorentina bisitecca. Florentine steak, and this plays know how to do it better than any other. It is tender, and moist, and perfectly seasoned. If you don't want steak they have an assortment of other varoius types of meats. Don't go here if you are a vegetarian though. If you are looking to get off the tourist path and eat authentic food from Firenze this is the place.
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