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IMPORTANT INFORMATION » Our Monthly Newsletter ITA -

Palazzo Pitti

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Rent, Sell and Manage Properties in Florence and Tuscany
NEWSLETTER September 2008

  September – With the summer sun burning just a little less brightly, we settle back into one of the busiest months of the year. Scents and sensibilities is the theme of the month, with a perfume fair, numerous wine events and back-to-school in the air.

September in Florence and Tuscany offers a myriad of events, fairs and fun, so keep your eyes out for posters with dates and times for some great parties like Borgo San Lorenzo’s Sagra della Ficattola featuring fried bread puffs stuffed with various salumi. Yum! (from Sept. 5 to 7th, every evening beginning at 7:30 pm, just in case you were wondering).

SUZANNE, CORSO, SANDRA, LORI and KIMBERLY send out our very best.


One of the handiest pointers we may ever pass along (so here we are doing it again), is the Italian way of spelling, a system especially handy for communicating by phone. When you are asked to please “sillibare” a name or word, blaze ahead with the following system:

In English we say “S as in Sam”. In Italian one simply says “Sam” or rather, “Savona”. For example, to spell the name Kim, say “Kappa, Imola, Torino.” Most Italians use the same set of words (or nearly). Here is our tried and true list. We suggest leaving a copy of this list by all your phones.

A – Ancona
B – Bologna
C – Como
D – Domodossola
E – Empoli
F – Firenze
G – Genova
H – Hotel
I – Imola
J – Junior
K – Kappa
L – Livorno
M – Milano
N – Napoli
O – Otranto
P – Pisa
Q – Quadro
R – Roma
S – Savona
T – Torino
U – Udine
V – Verona
W – Washington
X – Eeks (rhymes with weeks)
Y – York
Z – Zeta

We invite your comments for our “Readers Review Restaurants” section. Use this forum to spread the word about restaurants that merit recognition for their great food and good service. The contents will reflect our reader’s points of view (though we reserve the right to agree or disagree). Send your input to newsletter@pitcherflaccomio.com.

Our friend Victoria B. introduced Suzanne to one of her favorite Florentine restaurants Ristorante Ratatouille. The food is an over view of Tuscan specialties, with a very modern twist. Both seafood (insalata di Polpo) and meats are well represented. Add an excellent quality/price rapport and one of the only chances in Florence to get fois-gras… and you’ve got something to look into on your next special occasion. Il Ristorante Ratatouille. Viale Corsica, 31/R. 055 3248599

THUMBS UP – THUMBS DOWN “Our Readers Right”
Our “Thumbs up, Thumbs down” column is your chance to write us and share your own ideas and information, or to toot the horn of businesses, events and those Florentine situations that strike you as either wonderful or terrible. Please note: all opinions are (usually) strictly those of our readers. Lend us your thoughts! Suzanne,

Following up on a note from our friends Mimi and Ed, citing msnbc’s claim that along with banh mi in Ho Chi Minh City, tacos from San Miguel de Allende, and currywurst in Berlin, one of the best street foods in the world is a tripe sandwich from a tripe cart in Florence. So of course, we did a little exploration of our own. First, word from msnbc:

The dish: Tripe sandwiches

Where to find the best: Florence, Italy

Word on the street: Florentines adore their traditional peasant dishes, shining examples of how Tuscan ingenuity can transform even the humblest ingredients into the sublime. Take tripe, for instance: Even if you're not an avid consumer of cow stomach, when you're in Florence we urge you to close your eyes, take a bite, and become a convert. Florentines stew their tripe with garlic and aromatics until meltingly tender, then tuck it into a crusty roll and enliven it with either chile-laced red sauce or a zippy salsa verde made with capers, parsley, and anchovies. Everyone has a favorite spot, such as Civiltà della Trippa, a stand in the northwest part of Florence, or the cart in the Piazzale di Porta Romana run by a seasonally inclined fellow who adds artichokes to his sandwiches during the spring. Before you know it, you'll be ordering yours bagnato—dipped in the tripe's cooking liquid—as many locals do. Civiltà della Trippa, 13 Via Benedetto Dei.

P & F say “Our explorations revealed a few other stands worth mentioning. Remember, you might really like it, and if not, your entire investment was probably under 4 euros. It’s worth the risk. Florentine tripe stands are generally open from 9 am. to 6:30 or 7:30 pm and closed Sundays. Beyond the few we have mentioned here, there are lots of others, so don’t hesitate. It may be your very best chance to truly eat with the locals.”

Mario Albergucci, in piazza di Porta Romana (he would be the “seasonally included fellow”), has the belly of a perfect host, and a great variety of tripe options to choose from including regular tripe, lampredotto and also poppa (udder).

On the corner of Via dell'Ariento and Via San Antonio, in the middle of the kiosks of the San Lorenzo market, say hello to the very friendly Beatrice at her tripe cart .

On the corner of Via dei Macci and Borgo La Croce, just a stone’s throw from the “other” Florence market place Sant’Ambrogio, Sergio Pollini runs a really popular trip cart made from an ancient Ape.

Close to the American Express office, stop by the Trippaio, on Via Dante Alighieri near Via dei Cerchi.

A Firenze facevo il trippaio
Mi è successo un grossissimo guaio
Mi moglie una donna piacente
Dava a tutti la trippa per niente

Tripe is one of the most traditional dishes of Florence. Here is one version of Trippa alla Fiorentina – serves 6
1 kg cleaned and boiled tripe
500 gr. fresh or canned tomatoes
1 or 2 onions
1 or 2 carrots
1 stalk celery
parmigiano cheese
extra-virgin olive oil
salt and pepper

Chop the onion, carrot and celery and sauté over low heat. Cut the boiled tripe into strips, add to the pan and sauté for 5 minutes. Add fresh, chopped (or canned) tomatoes and continue cooking until the sauce has thickened (15 or 20 minutes). Serve with a sprinkling of parmigiano and/or extra-virgin olive oil.

All our best,

The Staff of Pitcher and Flaccomio

Newsletter compiled by Kim Wicks

Pitcher & Flaccomio Newsletter Copyright 2008

Direttore responsabile Mario Spezi -  Pubblicazione con iscrizione n. 5697 del 23\01\09 presso il Tribunale di Firenze