1/2 Melone al Porto: The melons we encountered were just amazing. Never have we had melon in the US as ripe, sweet, and full of flavor as the ones we had in Italy.
Tortellacci di Ricotta e Spinaci alle Punte d’Asparagi: Big spinach and cheese-filled pastas with an asparagus sauce. A fresh-tasting pasta dish with a beautiful sauce.
Pappa al Pomodoro alla Toscana: This is another traditional Tuscan soup, a little more obscure than ribollita. Basically an all-tomato version of ribollita, if that makes sense (tomato soup thickened with bread). We loved it.
Tortellini al Ragu’ Toscana: Tortellini with meat sauce
Classica Ribollita alla Fiorentina: Buca Mario’s ribollita was one of the best. This one had a more complex flavor and was more like a thick chowder than a porridge.
Fagioli Toscani all ‘Olio di Frantoio: White beans dressed with olive oil are an omnipresent Tuscan contorno, and practically mandatory with Tuscan steak.
Ossobuco di Vitella alla Fiorentina con Fagioli all ‘Uccell: Veal ossobuco with beans and tomatoes. Maybe not the best choice of main courses for a hot Florentine afternoon, but it was delicious.
Fior di Zucca Fritti: Everyone kept ordering fried squash blossoms wherever we went. A big favorite. They have a very pleasant sweet vegetable taste.
Cinghiale Fresco alla Maremmana con Polenta Grigliata: A traditional wild boar stew over grilled polenta. Another satisfying winter dish on a hot day.
Classica Bistecca alla Fiorentina (per tre persone): Steak for 3. Our waiter here is pouring on the green Tuscan oil, the traditional counterbalance to the lean beef.
Piazza degli Ottaviani, 16/r
+39 055 214179
Ristorante Buca Mario’s Website
Buca Mario is not inexpensive and soulful, and they cater to the tourist crowd, but they do serve all the traditional Tuscan dishes, and they do them very well indeed.
BEST THING TO EAT: Ribollita