It has been a week since my departure from Florida and so far, I am still in shock! I am in awe of the experience, flavors, culture, and the sights. During the first week, I have eaten tons of gelato, delicious restaurant meals, fresh veggies, and fruit. You’ll want to keep reading in order to find fantastic places to eat and relax. As you may know, gelato is one of the main desserts that are enjoyed in Italy- if you think ice cream is comparable, you will not think so the moment you try it at Vivaldi Gelati. Vivaldi Gelati is southeast of the Duomo di Firenze, roughly a 20 minute walk, past the Fiume Arno (Arno River). I want to make a quick note that all of my directions will be relative to the Duomo di Firenze. While I was at Vivaldi, I had the lemon gelato and the mango gelato — don’t judge!! It is safe to say that Vivaldi has the best gelato that I have found thus far. Although Vivaldi has delicious gelato, it is not all that it offers. It is also a fantastic place to study, play chess, or enjoy the Florentine warmth. In the back of Vivaldi, there is a gorgeous room filled with very comfortable couches, chairs, tables, and Italian music. Who would’ve thought that a gelateria would be a great place to study!! The picture below is the back of Vivaldi and it shows what to expect when you walk to the back.
For some delicious risotto, pizza, and pasta, you must go to La Galleria Il Vino dei Guielfi cucina tipica fiorentina. The restaurant is roughly 10 minutes south of the Duomo and over the Ponte Vecchio. I had the risotto with seafood on a white wine sauce and it was absolutely delicious! My other friends highly recommend their pizza and pasta. Even though their food is delicious, the best part is that it is very friendly to the pocket! For my example, my risotto was 12 euros and a pizza is 8 euros. Attached, I have a picture of the cozy interior of the restaurant, it is very cute!
One last food recommendation is the Mercato Centrale, where you can find anything — all sort of veggies, fruits, spices, delicious breakfast, lunch, clothing, and much much more! The central market is north of the Duomo and roughly a 6 minute walk. It is very convenient to get anything there, especially if you want to cook. From my experience, the market has the cheapest and most fresh ingredients in town. Just a little heads up — the vendors don’t usually speak English so it is best to freshen up on your Italian or do what I do which is use Google Translate. To quickly highlight the wallet-friendly market, I was able to buy all of the ingredients that I need to make dinner for 7 people for only 28.50 euros! Aside from the fresh fruits and veggies, the market also has the best coffee at Bambi. For less than 3 euros I am able to get a cappuccino and a pastry! Aside from coffee, there is also a fantastic bakery that sells traditional Italian breads called Pany da Lori. The breads, biscotti, pastries, and flatbreads are so yummy.
I cannot wait to tell you all more about the other locations in the near future! Stay safe and eat well, GO BULLS!!