5 Picks for Lunch in Florence, Italy

48f54d3ded7e45bca17f5524e4e71517_7 Lately we've seen an influx in emails from the blog asking about a variety of different topics. It's become nearly impossible for us to respond to most emails that come in -- between work, life and prepping for baby, our time is stretched pretty thin. What we are trying to do is pay attention to questions that come up over and over again, and start creating blog posts with answers to these frequently asked questions.

Without further ado, this first post covers 5 places we recommend for lunch in Florence. We get lots of emails asking for recommendations and it's about time we shared some of our faves. This isn't a "best" list -- just simply five places we enjoy going every now and again for a good meal!

  1. Caffe Petrarca, Piazzale della Porta Romana 6R - This great cafe is right on the circle in Porta Romana. The food is simple, but good. Go early -- they often run out of the daily specials by 1:30/2pm. This is a great spot to eat before hopping on the 12 bus up to Piazzale Michelangelo. The stop is right outside of the cafe's front door.
  2. Gustapanino, Via de' Michelozzi 13r - Piazza Santo Spirito is one of our favorite spots in the city and Gusta is our go-to choice for a quick, yummy panino. They just added outdoor seating, too, making this a great spot for people watching. There is a lot of hype around the gusta restaurants, which may deter some folks, but we think the panini are really good!
  3. Osteria Buongustai, Via dei Cerchi, 15r - If you find yourself near Piazza della Signoria during lunchtime, this is one of our favorite spots. Tiny and low-frills, but always delicious. We *highly* suggest ordering from the daily specials menu only -- we've never been disappointed by what's fresh that day. One more tip: not the best place to eat in the heat of the summer...the small size means it gets and stays hot in there.
  4. La Cantinetta di Dante e Beatrice, via del Corso 27/r - We've written about this spot before, but it's worth repeating. In the city center near the Duomo, it can be impossible to find a well-priced meal. At Dante e Beatrice, you'll find good quality, good service and fair prices. Again, daily specials are always our favorites!
  5. Osteria Il Desco, Via delle Terme, 23/R - This amazing spot is just a few blocks from the Ponte Vecchio, but it might as well be miles away...rarely do tourists venture down this side street. Il Desco has some of the best lunch deals we've found and the daily specials are always out of this world. Occassionally, the specials have a fusion feel to them and you'll find dishes you can't get anywhere else in the city.

When people email asking for lunch recommendations, they also usually want us to recommend our favorite dishes at certain spots. Here's the thing: that's impossible. At all of our favorite restaurants we always order from the daily special menus...which, as you might have guessed, are always changing based on what's fresh and in season. Sure, you can dig through most menus and find insalata caprese in the winter or papa al pomodoro in the heat of summer, but eating what's in season will always have you walking away happy.