r

russspezial's Profile

Title Last Reply

Tuscany area best dining recommendations

May 2014 trip planning on visiting , staying for lunches, in Montepulciano, Pienza, Arezzo, and Chianti area with day trip stops at Radda, Castellini and Gaiole. Looking for fantastic places to have lunches only. Looking for those great places that possibly give us great vistas and great food.
We are basing our evenings in Greve and need ideas for our dinners(6) in that town as well
Thanks

Mar 25, 2014
russspezial in Italy

Trying to find bagged Ice in Florence

Will plan to enjoy lots of delicious wine next month but also prefer a cocktail or two relaxing in my apartment terrace. Can someone suggest a place in Florence where I can purchase bagged ice? Would it be a COOP? I once heard there is a small grocery in Oltrarno that sells bagged ice but have lost that info. We really need some help here so all suggestions will be greatly appreciated

Mar 19, 2014
russspezial in Italy

Florences top restaurants for splurge meal?

Thank you all for the advice and opines.
I feel that I have a good grasp on my Firenze dining, and now, I am onto my country and day trip choices.
Will be in Greve as a base for 6 days and will day visit:
-Montepulciano and Pienza
- Arezzo
- Radda, Castellina, Gaiole
-possibly Sienna

Once again , looking for the best in these places, all lunches, farm to table, etc. Food style not such a concern, just looking to have memorable lunches
Please help!

Feb 26, 2014
russspezial in Italy

Florences top restaurants for splurge meal?

Heading to Firenze in early May and am wanting suggestions and reviews of best meals for one or two splurge dinners. Considering the following:

-Cibreo ristorante
-Cantinetta Antinori
-Il Sant Bevitore

I want seriously experiences for all or any of these places, good or bad! The reviews I read are so, so mixed that I am boggled!! We are true enjoyers of fine food, I myself being a chef in NOLA. One peeve is fine dining with a speck of food on an enormous plate. and not a big fan of a seven or eight course tasting menu.
If I'm paying top dollar, I want to leave satisfied!
so, all being said, Please help us with your ideas .Thanks!

Feb 13, 2014
russspezial in Italy

Need my "liver fix" in venice!

Getting back to venice next week and gotta have some of that wonderful liver. Last trip, remember the Gruff sisters place in Dosudoro recommended for the liver. Went, had the liver. liked it, but want a few recommendations for other places serving that famouse venetion liver. Any ideas?

Oct 25, 2010
russspezial in Italy

Greve restaurant recommendations

Thanks jen kalb. Your guidance is always well recieved and helpful. I will check out the link

Oct 18, 2010
russspezial in Italy

Greve restaurant recommendations

We are going to be in Greve for 4 days. We have a lot of day road trips planned but will pretty much end up in Greve around dinner time each night. Been before to Greve and ate at Gallo Nero 2xs. Loved the food, loved the place but want to broaden my horizons with some new places. I realize that Lamole, Panzano are nearby, but really looking for placed in Greve( renting an apartment in Montebeni and considering walking to dinner in town. We need some really good ideas as to where to have dinner. We are all adventerous eaters and like to dine out. Kitchen professionals here and absolutely DO NOT WANT TO COOK on our trip so no recs for market , butcher, etc where I need to cook my own meals please. All recs will be appreciated .

Oct 18, 2010
russspezial in Italy

5 days in Tuscany - Please critique my current plan - worried it is too ambitious

parrat01, so funny! I too have scheduled a very similiar trip with 5 days in the country visiting as much as I can stand! My traveling partner keeps commenting on how nice it is going to be just to relax at the farmhouse and read lots of books! Little does he know that this is soo not going to happenLOL! Good luck with your itinerary and I too suggest Trattoria da Leo over Buca di antonio. I have eaten at both, and although theyb are both really wonderful, da Leo is a little more casueal and "younger". Have fun on your trip!

Aug 31, 2010
russspezial in Italy

Bistecca in Tuscany

Ospreycove, of course not. That is just common sense and good etiquette never to insult the owners, or better yet, anyone, anywhere, anytime.. As a previous restaurant owner, I too, believe that mine was the very best!

Jul 23, 2010
russspezial in Italy

Bistecca in Tuscany

I suppose I too have mislead all to believe that I am somewhat of a snob when approaching the topic of Bistecca. My past experiences of this famous steak have been a bit up and down and all over the place. I have had really chewy, stringy and grissly cuts in Florence, as well as times when the steak was too drastically raw . I understand the idea behind the prep of the dish. It should be perfectly charred, and seared on the outside and SOMEWHAT raw and (preferably) room temp on the inside. Personally, if the cut is not of the highest quality, this process deems itself useless, as inferior beef is inferior beef. Back to my main search, I want the finest quality of Beef, prepared correctly( Olive oil, salt and pepper with perhaps fresh rosemary) over wood fire, without all the drama! Really it doesnt matter to me if I am sitting in a hole in the wall or a place packed with knowing tourists or not.
I will check out all of the above places and go from there. And a side note: I have in the past found some of the best restaurants in a guidebook or two,, and do refer to all of them for their wonderful resources and ideas.

Jul 23, 2010
russspezial in Italy

Bistecca in Tuscany

Again, thanks to everyone for their ideas. Being a foodie and chef, my ideas of bistecca and off the beaten path ar, I, suppose, somewhat different.
We are looking for really tasty steak, really, it doesnt matter if it comes from Japan , as long as it is delicious and prepared perfectly, a liitle char on the outside and cold on the inside. Where the actual cattle is raised is trivial, it is all about the actual meat and its flavor, sear, texture, etc. After all, regardless of all of the hype, this is what it is all about, flavor,flavor,flavor. So who has the best prepared, perfectly presented and tasty piece of steak in floence?

Jul 22, 2010
russspezial in Italy

Bistecca in Tuscany

Thanks for all the responses here, and I will check out the butcher and his empire!
On another note, how about giving some advice on good bistecca in Florence. I have already been to Sostanza and Trattoria Mario and am looking for an alternative. Has anyone had the bistecca at Cinghale Bianco or Quatro Leoni? Looking for something off the beaten path.

Jul 22, 2010
russspezial in Italy

Bistecca in Tuscany

traveling and staying outside of Greve in the fall. Wanting any advice and opinion on the best place within the area to get top quality Bistecca. We are willing to travel throughout chianti area to find the best there is.( Radda, Castellini, Gaiole,Greve , etc)
Had it in Firenze a few times but figured the best would be in the country somewhere. Any ideas please?

Jul 20, 2010
russspezial in Italy

aperitivo in florence

I certainly didnt intend to sound like I doonr appreciate the guidebooks, because I use them and rely on them heavily with all my travels.
thanks for the link to the "real thing "aperitivos. I will check it out and hopefully find a few places that will work out
Ciao

Jul 01, 2010
russspezial in Italy

san Miniato truffle fest in Nov 13

Anyone been? any advise?

Jun 25, 2010
russspezial in Italy

aperitivo in florence

Looking for a few places in florence to enjoy a pre dinner drink, away from the tourists and not in any guidbooks. area doesnt matter, just looking for the real thing!

Jun 25, 2010
russspezial in Italy

Where to go to cook, shop and eat for a week?

Lucca would be ideal, close enough to a coast, very local with great markets and reasonably rated apartments. Did that on my last trip and would do it again!

Jun 24, 2010
russspezial in Italy

Recommendation for piccione (squab, a.k.a. pigeon)

Had the best Piccione parfait( sounds weird but sublime) at Poggio Antico in Montalcino. Also served Piccione pate that was to die for, with a sauce that was somewhere between fig and a local berry!

Jun 24, 2010
russspezial in Italy

good restaurants in Florence, Italy

Think about La Giostra. I have eaten there the last 6 trips to Firenze and never disappoints! Also think about Pariole

Jun 24, 2010
russspezial in Italy

Romantic wedding meal for two in or around Florence

Villa san Michelle is wher you want to be. Sublime food, absolutely romantic surroundings and service that is impeccable. Heading to Firenze in Nov and have already made my reservation!Congrats on your wedding and enjoy enjoy enjoy!

Jun 24, 2010
russspezial in Italy

Honeymoon in Montalcino

You absolutely must try Poggio Antico( up the hill from town) lovely outdoor patio and 4 0r 5 course menu, all with really great wine made in house and truely a magical experience. If you go make sure you sit outside, the view is spectacular

Jun 24, 2010
russspezial in Italy

2 weeksin Florence

Been to florence so many times and always seem to end up at the same places. We like Cienghale Bianco in Oltrarno( probably the best meal Ive had there) , La Giostra is great in Santa Croce area and for a very local scene,very few tourists ,we go to Quatro Leoni( also in oltrarno) all of these are reasonably priced, very local, very real tuscan and super florentine, so, good luck, and enjoy your trip.

Jun 24, 2010
russspezial in Italy