Restaurants in Tuscany
With a local culinary history as iconic as its landscapes, Tuscany is a foodie’s paradise. The best restaurants in Tuscany prepare hearty local specialties such as bistecca Fiorentina, papa al pomodoro, rinollita, and funghi porcini from the local bounty that is as diverse as the region’s landscapes. And, of course, meals are served with generous pours of the provence’s first-class vino.
Arnolfo is just one of the restaurants in Tuscany to have earned Michelin recognition. Here, Chef Gateano Trovato’s contemporary takes on Italian fare are served alongside hillside views. And, at Tuscany restaurants such as Ristorante All’Olivo, outside Lucca, patrons can get even closer to nature with al fresco dining options. Here, customers can tuck into locally sourced meals on an outdoor terrace that’s shaded by vibrant bougainvilleas, while aromas from the kitchen waft above them.
Tuscany restaurants take advantage of their nearby coastline by stacking their bills of fare with freshly prepared seafood dishes. Set right by the beach, La Pineta serves up branzino caught on its owner’s family fishing boats. Trattoria Antico Moro also specializes in fishy fare, including the region’s famous cacciucco stew.
The beach restaurant La Pineta may cater to Tuscan cognoscenti, but down-to-earth owner Luciano Zazzeri (a former fisherman) still gets his catch from his family’s boats. Try his take on the Livornese specialty caicciucco, a frothy soup made from wine, garlic, and branzino.
Lombardo specializes in very honest Lucchese cuisine, such as the stewed codfish with leek, and also represents some decent and inexpensive local wines.
For a lunch of expertly selected cheeses and cured meats, stop at La Vena di Vino, a no-frills wine bar with barrel-vaulted cellars. The pecorino cheese served with crystalline acacia honey is a standout.
A tiny restaurant with a delicious cecina (chickpea pancake) and thin-crust pizzas, is always first-rate.
The famous Michelin-starred La Mora still keeps tradition in check after 143 years with its inventive cooking.
A five-minute drive north of Lucca is the glass- walled dining room at the Michelin-starred Ristorante La Mora. With just 10 tables, the low-key restaurant is disturbed only occasionally by the faint roar of a passing train.
Sample Livorno’s famous dish, cacciucco, at Trattoria Antico Moro, a seafood restaurant that smells entirely like its wares. Cacciucco is one of several local dishes that have Jewish origins, a metaphor for multicultural Livorno.
Chefs Omar Barsacchi and Gionata d’Alessi serve Tuscan-Maremman cuisine like ravioli stuffed with pappa al pomodoro.