In Florence, when you hear chef Fabio Picchi‘s name, it’s like a guarantee of quality. Everyone knows his name!
Since 1979, his restaurant “il Cibrèo” has gone from being a simple osteria to become virtually a place of worship for Florentines and tourists in pursuit of an incredible experience.
I decided to treat myself to an evening of traditional dining, and some friends and I headed to Il Cibrèo Restaurant. This is a Restaurant with a capital “R”. Alfonso and Cristina greeted us immediately with a smile and escorted us to our table.
The restaurant is simple but sophisticated and — first and foremost — elegant. We got things started with a glass of prosecco and a turmeric pudding. It doesn’t take long to tell that the favorite ingredient here is oil of the finest quality.
Cristina sits down with us and starts to explain the menu, or “perform the menu” would be more exact! It was wonderful to hear her talk about the dishes, all from the Tuscan tradition, simple cuisine made with exceptional ingredients. We decided to follow her suggestions. We were brought a seemingly endless array of appetizers, all small portions to share!
The first thing that we appreciated was that we weren’t served the usual sliced salami despite it being traditional Tuscan cuisine. Among the many mouth-watering things they served: tripe salad, sausage crostini, tomato pudding, caponata (an eggplant and tomato dish), almond sauce and much more. After the appetizers, we couldn’t wait to try the next course! The cream of bell peppers was an incredible discovery. The portions were plentiful but not too heavy, which was also true for the main courses. Then the waiter brought us some “mammoth bone” bread — so called for its shape — to share. The bread, which they make themselves with potatoes, is superb and we couldn’t get enough of it! A Chianti Riserva was brought for the wine upon the excellent suggestion of the sommelier. We couldn’t have chosen better.
Then came the selection of desserts, a delight for the eyes and palate alike. We had delicious cheesecake and flat chocolate cake!
This is definitely not an inexpensive restaurant. They have a fixed price for appetizers, first courses, main courses and desserts, of around €100 per person. But you can’t pass up trying this place at least once if you happen to be in Florence. And if you get a chance to come back again, don’t forget their Trattoria Cibreo and Cafe Cibreo, and most importantly, the Teatro del Sale — three different experiences for all budgets!
Via del Verrocchio, 8r
Hours: from 1:00 pm to 2:30 pm and from 7:00 pm to 11:15 pm.
English translation by Miriam Hurley