Rating: 8 / 10
Having friends in a city is a sure-fire way to skip the tourist traps. When those friends are also culinarily inclined it's a match made in heaven. Reservations had been made long in advance for a table at this Osteria, knowing full well how crowded it gets. I had just arrived on the train from Napoli and it would be my first taste of Tuscan cuisine, well, since 2006 anyway.
Another benefit of eating with friends is that you can order more things on the menu. We decided on three starters/sides, spinach, beans and a mushroom crostini. All three were excellent in their own myriad ways. The beans were brought to a whole new level by the addition of the excellent newly pressed olive oil, salt and pepper.
My main was a perfectly succulent pork loin with a peppercorn sauce. I managed to steal a few slices of my friends gorgeously cooked steak, and some small crunchy potatoes.
The service was on point. Everything screamed authenticity and care, and the food was second to none. If you happen to make it to Florence and manage to secure a table here, don't miss out on this little gem.
These recommendations are just personal opinions based on my palate, things change, chefs get fired or replaced, places open-close, relocate, so take it all with a pinch of MSG and discover your own gems too. But please do try a few of these, they have been researched exhaustively.
"Sadness is tempered by umami, grief by the motion of slurping, hope restored in the ladling of glistening, fatty broth"