Hidden gems restaurants in Florence guide
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2 Hidden Gem Restaurants In Florence For Authentic Italian Cuisine & The Best Florentine Dishes

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With over 14 million people visiting Florence each year, it’s obvious that Florence is full of restaurants, close to 2000 to be precise.

With so many, choosing one becomes a difficult task. This is why diners end up choosing their Florence restaurants in one of these three ways: by roaming the streets and picking a random spot that seems good, by looking at Google Maps suggestions and sticking to the first results, or by reading a guide like this one.

With that in mind, I want this guide to do two things: give you suggestions that go beyond page 1 on Google Maps and not overwhelm you with choices. These 2 hidden gems restaurants in Florence are so good you’ll likely want to visit them again.



How I Found These 2 Hidden Gems Restaurants in Florence

On our first day, we had a blast. For me, the first day is always the best, because of the excitement that uncovering a new place brings.

While we were having our Aperitivo at the Rinascente Rooftop Bar, we started looking for restaurants but we didn’t find one we liked nearby. So we decided to just walk back towards our accommodation and scout for restaurants on the way there.

However, we took a different road than the one we came from in the morning. That’s probably because it was still our first day and we didn’t have good bearings yet.


On our way home, we came across a very charming street full of shops and people walking, but because it was just past 6 pm, it wasn’t super crowded yet. Plus, we visited in mid-October, which I suggest you do if you want to enjoy fewer crowds.

A particular long queue caught my eye. I initially thought it was a specialty food store, and then I realized it was a restaurant. So I looked at the menu, and it seemed sensational.

I am not one to wait, I hate it, but I made an exception and asked the ladies at the door how long it would take to be seated. They told me about 40 minutes and took my name.

And that’s how we found Trattoria Dall’Oste.


The best part was that because there were so many people, they took us to the smaller part of the restaurant, located on the opposite side of the road. It felt more authentic and much more private. We were the first to be seated there, although that didn’t last too long. But there were only 4 tables in that room, so it was perfect.


As for the second one, I found it online while I was looking for the best crostini in Florence.

You see, holidays for me tend to highlight one particular craving, and in Florence, it was crostini and pizza. I wonder if that’s the same for you. 

Of course, I couldn’t just have any crostini, so I went looking for the best crostini in Florence. And after a lot of vetting, I put Trattoria Cipolla Rossa on my list.



Trattoria Dall’Oste

Address: Borgo S. Lorenzo, 31, 50121 Firenze FI, Italy
Distance from Duomo: 2 minutes walk

This is a great spot for both lunch and dinner. It serves local Florentine food, and I can attest that it’s all delicious from what we ordered, and also from what the fellow diners around us said about their dishes.


Trattoria Dall'Oste Florence Menu
Trattoria Dall’Oste Menu With Prices


What to Order at Trattoria Dall’Oste

They call themselves the best steakhouse in Florence, so if you like meat, don’t miss their Fiorentina. While we didn’t order it, the Canadian couple who was standing next to us shared one, and they kept raving about how good it was. So did the middle-aged man sitting next to them. He ate the same portion by himself, or at least he tried to.

On the other hand, we went for two pasta dishes. But first, we ordered a crostini platter to share, and that’s how my obsession began (I say with a big smile on my face).

The crostini bread was warm and perfectly toasted. It had the perfect crunch but wasn’t too hard to eat. The paté was the showstopper, very flavourful but not too salty, as one might expect. I really enjoyed mine a lot.


The pasta dishes took nearly an hour to arrive. I guess they forgot us. But because the vibes were so nice and we were no longer that hungry, we didn’t mind waiting. As an apology, they gave us an extra bottle of water, since that’s what we were drinking.

For my main course, I had the Tortelli di Patate Mugellani al Ragù Toscano, a local stuffed pasta made with a potato filling and covered in a divine Tuscan meat sauce. The only regret I have is not asking for parmesan cheese. The dish didn’t seem to have any, and I like cheese on my pasta – parmesan or pecorino.


My husband ordered Pici al Ragù Dall’Oste and he loved it. 

The pici were nicely thick, perfectly cooked aldente and the ragu contained large pieces of beef. His pasta also came without cheese.

We were too full to order dessert, plus we enjoyed a sweet breakfast and a gelato earlier that day. If you want to know where and what we had for breakfast, check out My Breakfast Guide in Florence.

Our bill came at around €50, a great price for eating delicious food right in the heart of Florence.


Tips For Dining In Florence at Trattoria Dall’Oste

  1. Go early, not later than 6.30 pm, and wait in line to be seated.
  2. If you are after a more romantic atmosphere, try asking to be seated in the smaller restaurant. It’s located on the opposite side of the street, and it also has a few outdoor tables.
  3. Keep in mind the portions are very generous, so don’t be too greedy when ordering.
  4. When you are ready, take the time to explore the small shops on the same street. There’s even a delicious chocolate shop, where they give you samples, which make the perfect quick and small dessert.



Osteria Cipolla Rossa

Address: Via dei Conti, 53/r, 50123 Firenze FI, Italy
Distance from Duomo: 4 minutes walk

This is the restaurant we ate for lunch on our last day in Florence. I already told you how I found it, so you can assume what I ordered.

You guessed it right, I ordered Crostini, and just that. I was too full from our huge breakfast (you can see what I had and where here), plus I wanted to leave room for one last pizza that evening. If you want to know all the pizzas we tried in Florence and our verdict on each, you’ll appreciate this article – Best Pizza in Florence.


Osteria Cipolla Rossa interiors

Back to Cipolla Rossa now. 

This place had a very typical Tuscan decor, with interesting paintings on the walls. It felt a little more casual than my other recommendation, but I can envision it still being a romantic spot at night. This one has no outdoor seating.

Unlike me, my husband was feeling hungry, and he wanted a meat dish. So he went for the Tagliata di Manzo con Patate Arrosto. I am glad I suggested it as he said it was the best food of the entire trip. It could be because it had potatoes and he’s British (haha). On top of that, the meat was flavorful and tender, even though there wasn’t any sauce other than the juice released while cooking it.



The restaurant wasn’t very busy, so we were seated immediately. I had the best seat, right next to all the bottles of wine. I don’t say that because I am a heavy wine drinker but because I appreciate good labels, so I enjoyed looking at all of them.


Best Crostini in Florence

As for my crostini, you might be waiting to know which one I liked best. Was it the ones at Osteria Cipolla Rossa, or the ones at Trattoria Dall’Oste? It was a mix of both.

I preferred the bread of my first crostini at Dall’Oste, but Trattoria Cipolla Rossa makes a mean chicken liver paté. The only fault is that the bread was slightly too hard and not too warm. It was still delicious though. And two pieces were more than enough for me.

Other diners were ordering the gnocchi del giorno, and those too looked delicious. They came with a generous shaving of truffles.

Those two dishes plus a bottle of still water came at under €35, so a very good price.



More Hidden Gems Restaurants In Florence

We walked a lot during our 5 days in Florence. Yet, only two restaurants caught my interest. I thought I would share them with you, even if I didn’t get the chance to try them. You can check them online, see the reviews, and decide whether they are worth your time and money. Here they are:


Nuti restaurant Firenze
Hidden Gem Restaurant in Florence n.3


Nuti

This looks like it serves all the classic Tuscan dishes, like Bistecca Fiorentina and truffle specialties. However, it was the fresh pasta making in the window that caught my eye. Those giant Cappellacci have my name on them, so if you get to try them, I am kind of jealous :). Nuti is close to Cipolla Rossa; in fact, we spotted it right after our lunch there.


Il Borro

This is a fancy bistro with slightly higher prices than average, but considering it’s right on the river Arno I think that’s justified. From what I saw online, their menu looks very inviting. Looking at their menu, I would order the Focaccia di Patate platter and the Lasagnetta with Lamb Ragu. 



There you have it, my fully honest recommendation on where to eat in Florence and what to order. Since I only recommended two hidden gems restaurants in Florence, it should be easy for you to try them both. I hope you enjoy the food and vibe as much as we did.

Ciao.




Best Places To Eat In Florence FAQ

What food is Florence famous for?

Florence is famous for Tuscan cuisine including dishes like ribollita soup, bistecca alla fiorentina (Florentine steak), and crostini.

Where to eat in Florence according to locals?

Locals recommend eating at small trattorias, osterias, and wine bars for authentic Tuscan food at reasonable prices. Popular areas include Oltrarno, Sant’Ambrogio, and San Frediano. However, I also recommend 2 great restaurants near Duomo.

What time do locals eat dinner in Florence? 

Most locals eat dinner late, often not until 8:30 or 9 pm. Many restaurants do not even open for dinner until 7:30 pm.

Do you tip waiters in Florence?

Yes, it is customary to leave a tip for waiters in Florence. Most locals leave a tip of 5-10% of the bill. Tips are usually left in cash to round up the bill, rather than added to a credit card.

Which of these restaurants should I eat at in Florence?

Popular traditional options include Osteria de’Benci, Trattoria Mario, Il Latini, and Osteria Antica Mescita San Niccolò.

What is the main dish in Florence?

The most iconic main dish is bistecca alla fiorentina – a thick T-bone steak grilled over a wood or charcoal fire and seasoned with salt, pepper, and olive oil.

What is the famous dessert in Florence? 

Florence is known for its decadent dessert wine, Vin Santo, which is often paired with cantucci biscotti for dipping. Other famous sweets include panforte (spiced fruitcake) and soft gelato from historic cafes like Vivoli and Perché No.

What is the famous meat dish in Florence?

The most famous meat dish is bistecca alla fiorentina (Florentine steak). This premium T-bone steak comes from the prized Chianina cattle breed of Tuscany.

What is typical Tuscan food?

Typical Tuscan foods include ribollita bread soup, pappa al pomodoro (tomato bread soup), crostini toscani (little toasts topped with chicken liver pâté and anchovies), pici pasta, panzanella salad, wild boar salami and prosciutto, grilled or braised meats like Fiorentina steak, and beans like cannellini or fagioli all’uccelletto (stewed with tomatoes and sage).

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