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Tuscan food: Special dishes and restaurants

“First we eat, then we do everything else.”
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Parmigiano, olive oil, bruschetta and of course pasta. Oh, yes and meat, lots of meat ... That's the foodie scene in Tuscany. You’re thinking too plain and simple, right? Well, that's because with such super ingredients that’s all you need to make the meal of your life. Forget everything you learned from French cuisine. Italians do it better. Much better.

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Tuscan cuisine: Top 5 dishes to try when in Tuscany

First, we need to talk about the food you have to try when in Tuscany. We’ve already mentioned the famous bruschetta. But things get a little more exciting as we’re approaching our target. Here are Tuscan’s classics:

Trippa

Also known as Tripe or beef stomach. It doesn’t sound very appealing and just the thought of eating cow’s stomach can be a real turn off, but when you get the taste of it, you’ll want more. Every Nonna in town knows how to make excellent tripe and its elements never waver. Tripe is cooked in tomato sauce and served hot with (of course) lots of Parmigiano.

Bistecca alla Fiorentina

Florentine steak or Bistecca alla Fiorentina is a true masterpiece of a steak. Only available in Tuscany. And once you taste it, you’ll know what a carnivore’s paradise feels like.

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Mangia Fagioli

It’s a mystery how they do it, but Italians can pull it off with cooked beans...with olive oil, garlic and (again) parmigiano. Delicious!

Ribollita

Reboiled stew, which we advise you to not try this at home! ;) Ribollita is basically made from leftover bread, beans, and cabbage. It sounds pretty simple, but it’s not. But it’s a car hire away.

Castagnaccio

Rustic Tuscan chestnut delicacy free from gluten and dairy products. It’s made of chestnut flour olive oil, rosemary, and raisins... and it’s basically not a cake. 

Top 5 affordable restaurants in Tuscany

We’re on our next mission. And that is to find the best restaurant. We’ve all heard of Michelin stars. But we’re going to beat those Michelin 3-stars restaurants and show you exceptional cuisine, worth a special journey that is also affordable, because “you don’t need a silver fork to eat good food”.

1. Officina della Bistecca, Panzano in Chianti: As Julia Child put it: “The only time to eat diet food is while you’re waiting for your steak”. Officina della Bistecca is where you’ll find the best butcher in town and its Florentine steak is definitely worth waiting for.

2. Bar dell'Orso, Monteriggioni: Best roadside Bar with tasty and authentic Tuscan delights.

3. Dopolavoro La Foce, Chianciano Terme: When Tuscan tradition and fresh seasonal ingredients combine. Buon appetito!

4. Locanda Paradiso, Chiusure: We’ve found a paradise where they serve bruschetta, tomatoes, deep-fried artichokes and chianti classico...for all you vegetarians out there.

5. Trattoria Bonini, Vaglia: This family-run restaurant is smoking hot. On weekdays they serve steaks, fried chicken and fresh bread from the family bakery. Incredibly fresh!

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This was our guide through Tuscan cuisine. You’re welcome!

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