Streetsmart: via del Proconsolo

Streetsmart: via del Proconsolo

Fri 01 Jul 2016 12:53 PM

As cynical as it may sound, for many Florence residents, dodging is the name of the game when crossing piazza del Duomo: avoiding eye contact with portrait painters, weaving around tour groups, steering clear of Segways and selfie stick vendors. But the next time you’re moving through the crowded piazza, don’t dodge. Instead, walk with a purpose—toward via del Proconsolo. Take a swift turn toward piazza San Firenze and shed any biases you may be harboring about this busy street. It’s big on surprises.  

Fishing Lab | tel. 055240618
Via del Proconsolo 16r
Freshly opened Fishing Lab is 21st century Tuscany at its finest. Sure, the past is on prominent display—witness the frescoed, vaulted ceilings and the Roman ruins downstairs—but this adds a distinctly Florentine feel to the otherwise modern experience. Tuscan trimmings aside, the sociable staff, light lunch menu and street food-style snacks keep the vibe comfortably casual (try finding another place in town where you can satisfy your tuna craving at 10am). Most impressive, though, are the combinations and cooking styles to choose from—options range from sautéed cuttlefish and fried anchovies to raw tasting platters.

Migliorini Giuseppe e figlio | tel. 055213748
Via del Proconsolo 30r
A family business spanning four generations, Migliorini Giuseppe e Figlio is a go-to for glass projects of all sorts: think mirror making, coloration changes and skylight window construction. Step inside this towering palazzo to see the personable Migliorini men cut and modify sheets of all sorts, to have your diamonds doctored, or even to commission a custom shower frame. On a slower day, ask Sig. Giuseppe to show you the pietra serena staircase and the centuries-old arches that support the entire structure.

Monastica | tel. 0552345211
Via Dante Alighieri 1/5
(accessible through the via del Proconsolo entrance to the Badia Fiorentina)
Stuck in a rut with your cooking supplies and cosmetics? Step away from the supermarket and head to small-but-bountiful Monastica to load up on new pastas and wines; jams and jellies; soaps, perfumes and creams. Before you write it off as just another gift shop, take note: it’s run by the monastic fraternity of Jerusalem, stocking labors of love by monks and nuns from around Italy and France. If a particular product catches your eye, the welcoming shopkeepers will happily narrate its history for you—a treatment we’d call atypical in your average souvenir store.

Bramada | tel. 0552399982
Via del Proconsolo 12r
Fine craftsmanship and subtle softness best characterize Bramada: picture the pages of an Anthropologie catalog, minus the contrived “chain factor.” Area artisans and designers are behind most of the store’s stock, which ranges from hand-painted skirts and cashmere scarves to glossy wine goblets and ceramic mugs. Natural light floods into the boutique: its interplay with the colors on display lends Bramada an almost ethereal coziness, bringing the Danish concept of hygge to mind. On that note, walk in at the right moment and you might spot someone sewing and sipping tea in the back of the shop.

VIA DEL PROCONSOLO – The Don’t Miss List

Estate al Bargello
Seasonal series of performances in the sculpture museum’s courtyard  | 4

A Piedi Nudi nel Parco
Influential avant-garde boutique with international brands  | 1/n

Trattoria Le Mossacce

Traditional neighborhood restaurant with “prezzi giusti”  | 55r

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