Exactly one month ago, a new space opened in Florence, all for those who love good food. It’s called Eataly. Eataly was the brainchild of Oscar Farinetti, a new concept for a food store and high quality restaurant in one. The first Eataly was in Turin, followed by stores in Rome, Milan, Genoa, and Bologna, and then it expanded abroad to New York, Chicago, Tokyo, and Istanbul.
Italy is Eataly Eataly comes to Florence
Eataly’s opening in Florence had been long eagerly awaited (for over a year!) Though the spaces are smaller than in other cities, its location is beyond compare, a hop away from Florence’s Duomo on the lovely pedestrian street Via Martelli in a historic Florentine palazzo with an internal terrace for outdoor dining.
The spaces are divided between retail spaces selling of top-of-the-line food, including pasta, cookies, sauces, meat, fruit, vegetables, cheese and more, and places with the choice of dining on site.
As soon as you are through the door, there’s an Illy space to enjoy your choice of coffees and sweets, including in handy individual portions. The dessert case will be sure to tantalize you!
Across from it is a counter serving pizzas and schiacciata, stuffed with meat and vegetables, fresh from the oven, on display behind glass. No secrets here: you can see it made right before your eyes.
As you wander amidst the shelves stocked full of goodness to delight your palate from throughout Italy and Tuscany, you come first to an area where you can choose to eat a steak, a vegetable soup from the Trattoria da Burde (a historic trattoriaon the outskirts of Florence), or a lampredotto sandwich (a classic, meaty Florentine specialty) from Luca Cai. All suppliers were hand selected for their quality and attention to excellent ingredients. The raw vegetables for sale are from an organic market in the Valdarno, a valley not far from Florence, and often include the names of the farmers who grew them! We’d been lacking a place right in the center to buy top-quality ingredients.
The third room is for pasta and pizza, cooked or baked right there, to eat sitting at the counter and relish the close-up view of them being made! There might be a bit of a wait, but it’s well worth it.
Take the stairs to the wine and beer section, which has several tasting areas.
Food makes way for a bit of culture too. Books are for sale and you have the chance to learn more about Florence and Tuscany. You can ask for audio guides at the entrance that tell you about historic Florentine figures in detail.
English translation by Miriam Hurley