Food and gastronomy have always played an integral part of Florentine culture and identity. And abroad, traditional Tuscan cuisine has grown to become synonymous with the use of fresh, local ingredients. The city's recent increase in visitors, however, has made genuine Tuscan-style locales and shops harder and harder to encounter. Unfortunately, industrial and processed foods are replacing home-grown and local products. During our two and a half hours together, we will uncover some of the remaining authentic and historical establishments that still celebrate Florence's gastronomic peculiarities.
We will begin the walk in the heart of the historical center, home to many traditional bakeries, shops and cafes. Our docent, an Italian cuisine expert, will lead us to some favorite places to sample the city's best snacks and sweets. The group will have the opportunity to sample several specialties; including truffle sandwiches, Tuscan salamis, foccacia, coffee, pastries and, if the season is right, gelato. All the while, we will discuss local agricultural products, their background and how they differ from foods in other parts of Italy. We'll also touch on the current restaurant scene in Florence, for those interested in a total culinary experience while in town.
Though the focus of this walk is on the food, the group will quickly learn how Florence's gastronomy is intrinsically intertwined with its social and political history. The walk will thus celebrate and delve into multiple facets of Florentine life.