Florence was my favorite city in Italy, mostly because it’s small, clean, and authentic. Unfortunately we only spent two nights here, so we were really only able to see some sights and eat some food.
The Duomo, located in the center of Florence, is a really neat church with a beautiful facade and a colorful interior. The second church of Florence, also beautiful, houses the tombs of Galileo, Michelangelo, Machiavelli, and Bernini. The Piazza del Michelangelo was also stunning, with its panoramic view of the entire city.
For me, though, the highlight of Florence was one particular meal we had. We ate at the highly recommended restaurant called Mario’s, which is right next to the main market. Mario’s is a family-run joint that is only open 12:30-3:30pm, Monday-Saturday. They’re only open for lunch because they buy all of their ingredients fresh that day in the morning and can’t buy enough to stay open for dinner. Every employee inside was of the same family – cousins, parents, sisters, and brothers. Parties share tables with other parties and order from a menu that changes so often, it’s only communicated vocally.
Dustin and I started off by ordering a meat pasta. We also ate Morgan’s soup because she found out after ordering it that she was allergic. Other Americans sitting close to us let us know that we really needed to get a Florentino, which is the staple Florentine food. We asked our waiter to give us the smallest steaks they had, and a few minutes later he came out with a monster. He was carrying a large plate with both hands that housed the largest slab of meat I had ever seen. He said in his thick Italian accent, “Ehhh this all we have. It is 1.2 kilos. It’s OK?” Dustin and I looked at each other and said with utter confidence, “Yes.” We were so amazed by the steak that we asked the waiter to take a picture of it for us. He insisted that we come into the kitchen with him, so we did. It was awesome to feel so at home in such a foreign place.
The steak was easily the best steak I’ve ever had, and I’ve never been so full in my entire life. We were so full that we didn’t eat dinner that night nor breakfast the next day. It was awesome.
Florence was wonderful :).
Girl advice: Dustin wore a Schweinstaggerjersey around a lot, and he got lots of compliments. If you are looking to attract girls in Europe, then where the jerseys of popular European soccer players.
Learn more about my Europe trip here.