Yes, it is a bit hyperbolic to say that my afternoon at Cantinetta del Verrazzano changed my life, but it did spur a chain of events for which I will always be grateful. While I would normally not venture into a restaurant that proclaims its specialty as focacce and caffe, I had a tip from Shauna that there were a few gluten-free options worthy of a visit.
My friend Gareth flew down from London to join me in my gluten-free tour of Tuscany. We met in Florence before heading off on the last leg of my picture-perfect vacation. No stranger to my gluten-free dining adventures, he joined me earlier this year at Sambuca, Blue Smoke, Peter's and even enjoyed some gluten-free cereal at casa mia. Little did we know when he arrived in Florence the culinary treasures that awaited us.
We sat down at Cantinetta del Verrazzano late in the afternoon. The food and service were an absolute delight.
After our first round of wild boar salami and prosciutto, we ordered a second cecina al tartufo and another plate of prosciutto.
Since I couldn’t have the bread Gareth readily enjoyed, I was given a plain chickpea crepe that seemed better than bread to this GF guide.
The plate of pecorino, grapes and pears was served with fresh honey and orange zest. The honeycomb sitting on the bar still leaves my mouth watering.
Each slice of pecorino topped with sesame seeds, orange zest and honey was “like a little piece of heaven.”
Expletives were employed to express our enjoyment along with the sheer joy written on each of our faces.
Before leaving la Cantinetta to get gelato at GROM, our waiter Jonathan gave us recommendations for wineries and restaurants to visit during the next leg of our trip. Thank you Jonathan, for truly making our trip. Our lunch at Poggio Antico was one of the most incredible dining experiences I have been blessed to enjoy – full details to come.
Next stop: Pienza and our not-so romantic dinner at La Terrazza del Chiostro
Cantinetta del Verrazzano
Via dei Tavolini, 18-20
(Located in the center of Florence, between the Duomo and Gli Uffizi Gallery)