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Top 5 Florence Food Faves

May 19, 2015
by CEA CAPA Content Creator
Seeing as I am completely obsessed with the food in Florence (and just food in general), I thought it would be appropriate for my last CEA blog to be about… Food! Since my stay in here is just about up, I suppose it’s time to pass on my most prized knowledge – my personal foodie favorites in Florence – for prospective study abroad students and future visitors of this lovely city.

1)    The Margherita from Gusta Pizza

 We left our mark on Gusta

Gusta Pizza
, conveniently (and dangerously) located 30 seconds from my front door, is by far the best pizza I have ever had. Hand tossed, fired in a wood oven, and sauced up by 2 suave, young Italian men, this pizza is everything you’ve ever wanted in life. Take it to go and eat it in the sunshine, or enjoy it in the bustling little pizzeria.  Wherever you decide to eat your personal pizza, just make sure you get one (or 20) when you’re in Florence.  Also, if you want some heart-shaped pizza lovin', making friends with Roberto, Salvatore, and Mariano is most definitely in your best interest.

2)    Gelato from Gelateria della Passera

 Inside scoop: take your tasty treat
to the bridge for a snack with a view
Everyone seems to find "their" gelato place when they're studying here, and I am not the exception.  I stumbled across Gelateria della Passera within my first couple of days in Florence and have not stopped going back since.  Each flavor tastes exactly like the name promises; if you order almond, be prepared to bite into a sweet, cold, creamy almond.  The same goes for mojito, orange chocolate, salted caramel, and the rest of they're unique flavors. This tiny, fantastic gelateria always satisfies my tastebuds, and at 1 euro/scoop the price is unbeatable.

3)    Hotdog from Stadio Artemio Franchi
 Mary and I chowing a dog!

I never thought it was possible…but I eventually began to have some cravings for American food. What better way to satisfy my inner American than with a ballpark frank? Well, Stadio Artemio Franchi has real Oscar Meyer wieners, folks! A little barbecue sauce, ketchup, and crunchy onions on one of these delicious dogs will do wonders for your American food hankerings. In all reality, though, you shouldn’t head to the stadium for the dogs; you should go to support Fiorentina! A semester in Florence would not be complete without cheering on your city at a home game. Forza Viola!

4)    Cappuccino and pastry from Chiaroscuro

 Good morning, Mare

Every morning after our early class, my dear friend Mary and I swing into Chiaroscuro, a charming coffee shop near our school, for a cappuccino and pastry (or pastries, depending on how the morning is going).  Chiaroscuro is everything I love about Italy wrapped into one. It is charming and filled with locals and smells like espresso and sweet, delicious pastries.  They also have an assortment of cakes, a scrumptious aperitivo, and cute staffers, so it would be silly not to check this place out a time or two.

5)    Coccoli and antipasti platter from La Beppa Fioraia
 Coccoli. PC: Mary Brown
 Antipasti platter. PC: Maxx Kaitlynn Reiff

One of my first meals when I arrived was provided by our wonderful CEA admin, who brought us out for a welcome-to-Florence lunch at La Beppa Fioraia, a delightful restaurant tucked into the Tuscan hillside. The first thing they brought out was a monster appetizer platter filled with traditional Tuscan meats, cheeses, and spreads. Most importantly, however, was not what was on the platter, but what was on the side: coccoli.  Coccoli are absolutely delicious, golfball-sized dough balls that are fried to perfection. You could, in my opinion, eat coccoli with anything, or even plain. Pick your poison, but whatever you pair them with, make sure you have a few (dozen) of these fried treats.

I share this golden intelligence with you all in hopes that someday you will be able to come here and enjoy Florence to its fullest by indulging (and overindulging) in these delicious local dishes and Florentine experiences.  But until that day comes, all you have are these descriptions and some pictures to check out. Sorry to be such a tease.


Emma Lamke is the Spring 2015 CEA MOJO Blogger in Florence, Italy.  She is currently a sophomore at the University of Wisconsin-La Crosse.

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