06 June, 2010

Florence Eats: the Good and the Bad

How's your weekend going? I think it's kind of funny how my night is the morning in the US, which makes for some odd skyping times...

While in Florence, some Ben and Jerry's workers were passing out flyers for free ice cream from 5-7pm. What a coincidence: when we passed by the Ben and Jerry's, it was between 5-7pm. We were really going to grab some gelato at the GelatoFest 2010, but when presented with the choice between paying for tickets to the Fest and getting something free, we chose the free route. And apparently so did many Italians. We waited in a pretty fast moving line and I made a split second decision to get the coffee and Chunky Monkey flavors.

Two spoons for extra scoopage.

I'd have to say, Chunky Monkey is one heck of a flavor. I'm sure I can make an all natural, honest-to-goodness recreation with a variation on banana ice cream.

Breakfast in the hotel the next day was interesting...I got what I thought was orange juice,  but it turned out to be apricot. I'm really not a fan of bread, and the two pieces of bread/pastry below reminded me why. Not good. I suppose someone who likes flaky, dry pastries would appreciate that one, filled with chocolate, or someone who likes a crusty white roll would be all over it, but I just wasn't. And again, not being a cheese person, I'm not sure why I took so much cheese. Needless to say, I didn't consume it all.

But now for the positives. The stewed prunes? Amazing! They still have the pits in, so I had to cut around them, but they were oh-so-tasty. I went back for seconds. The kiwi here are delicious as well. I like to eat them with their skins on, and that way they taste a little like grapes. I've noticed that the Italians here cut all the skin off their fruit. I love the skin; sometimes I think it's the best part of the fruit, especially on apples.

I ordered a mixed salad for dinner in Florence, and it came with shaved carrots, mixed greens (in which they use a lot of arugula...I've never really had it, but I love its peppery bite), corn, olives, and cucumbers, and I dressed it with some olive oil and balsamic vinegar.

I ordered some white beans in tomato broth as a side. It was alright, but the beans tasted like they came from a can. Interesting dish, though.

Surprisingly, the one bad meal we had in Florence had the best bread. This was quite delicious.

I had high hopes for this pizza...all I really wanted were the grilled veggies and I thought I'd nibble on the crust. The veggies were alright but a little oily. The crust? It was more like an American pizza. In fact, it tasted a little like the "wheatzzas" (wheat flour pizzas) my mom used to make. And that's not a compliment, haha...

Today I'm heading to church (I actually was planning on going earlier, but when I got there I found out that it wasn't till 11...maybe that's what I get for trying to interpret the Mass schedule in Italian, haha) and then going to explore the surroundings with some friends.


  1. Yum, apricot juice sounds delicious!! If there's anything I've learned about eating in Europe, it's to find a place off the beaten path that's full of REAL Italians, not tourists. Everything will be much better there! Keep us posted on everything!!

  2. disappointing on the pizza but the frozen all looks great. I can't wait to see more pics

  3. It sounds like you've had highs and lows on the food scene in Florence. I've heard the little hole-in-the-wall places are the best!

    And I'm not sure what exactly Chunky Monkey is but you could def. make your own all-natural version. I mean, with the bananas you're already half way there

  4. Wow, that is pretty weird that you were in Florence for a few days while I'm here. I'll be here for about six more weeks though because I'm living with my boyfriend who works here.

    I feel a bit bad that you didn't have totally great food while in Florence. I've found a few GREAT spots for vegans in the city.

    Have fun on your trip.