23 Best Restaurants in Florence, From Tasting Counters to Sandwich Shops

It pays to follow insider advice before you choose where to eat in Florence. Millions of visitors crowd into the city each year, and too many restaurants are content serving indifferent food to people who don’t know any better. But look beyond the ubiquitous menu turistico, the plastic panini, and mass-produced pizza sold by the slice, and you’ll find a dynamic, varied dining scene of everything from revered temples of gourmet cuisine to food trucks selling tripe sandwiches. 

While the beating heart of la cucina Fiorentina is the traditional, family-run trattoria serving up old favorites such as ribollita (bread-based soup with black cabbage and beans), and the mighty “bistecca alla fiorentina,” there is so much more on offer these days. A new generation of exciting young chefs is riffing on the recipes that their mothers and grandmothers taught them, using fresh, local, and seasonal ingredients. They are more widely traveled than their grannies, so dishes are sometimes macchiato (“stained”) with exotic flavors that were unknown on Florentine menus 15 years ago.

Top of the tree are the city’s six Michelin-starred restaurants, where you can expect a gourmet dining experience with all the bells and whistles—perfect for a special treat and that fancy-pants new outfit. At the other end of the spectrum is street food like lampredotto (the fourth stomach of the cow) sold to locals and curious visitors. In between there are contemporary osterias, gourmet sandwich bars, wood-fired pizzerias, and wine bars serving interesting nibbles. There’s something for every taste and all budgets; just remember to avoid those tourist menus—however tired your feet may be—and consider these best restaurants in Florence instead.

Read our complete Florence travel guide here.

This gallery has been updated with new information since its original publish date.