Carl Jung was a Swiss psychiatrist and psychoanalyst who founded analytical psychology. Serious stuff, but we can use his personality-defining techniques to lead us to yet more revelry. Although there are 16 personality types we could consider, in the interest of ease and general post-Christmas fatigue, here we’ll narrow it down to four. January can be a dreary month as we get back down to the business of life while battling a holiday hangover, but Florence plays host to all of these men-and-women-about-town as they fashionably stumble over the cobblestones arm in arm with their best buds. Here’s how you might fit into the various joints they frequent, hair of the dog and all that.
…Intuitive problem solvers who always look out for others
Illustrations by Leo Cardini
Diplomats all have one thing in common: they’re intuitive and they live by their emotions. They might fit well into the inhomogeneous group of diehard aperitivo goers who range from girls grabbing a glass of wine with friends to students with plates piled high looking for the best bang for their buck. An aperitivo is suited to these enthusiastic, creative and sociable free spirits who love to listen in a quiet place where they can converse with friends while feasting on nibbles. Places such as the bars surrounding piazza Santo Spirito, a particular favourite being Pitta M’Ingolli (piazza Santo Spirito 17) for its reasonably priced buffet (pay for a drink and eat as much as you wish), provide the ideal scene for socialising, while wine lovers in this category should go to Le Volpi e L’Uva (piazza dei Rossi 1R), where glasses are served alongside loaded crostini made to order.
…Bold strong-willed thinkers who don’t shy away from intellectual debate
Analysts, with their strong personalities and extroverted ways, only frequent the chicest and sharpest joints. You’ll see these well-heeled gallivants laughing heartily, gleaming white-teeth smiles over glasses fizzing with bubbles in low-lit locales surrounded by friends. Their tailored coats and fashionable beanie hats shelter them from the wintry breeze as they step down into the street from San Frediano’s pocket-sized wine bar Il Santino (via di Santo Spirito 60), which draws a trendy crowd for its extensive wine list and delectable nibbles. Having analysed the inadvertent effect of a night of jollification, the ecologically inclined head for Vineria Sonora (via degli Alfani 39R), an organic enoteca with mismatched hipster furniture to mirror their clientele. After an initial bevvy, the most elusive of this group move on to Rasputin (via del Presto di San Martino), a “secret” bar tucked away in the neighbourhood of a famous Oltrarno church, where exclusive cocktails are crafted like works of art and you can whisper until the wee hours in a candlelit corner of this turn-of-the-century style bar.
…Experimental and energetic artists
With artistic flair and a desire to be different, the edgy individual Explorers are drawn to alternative music and clubbing. Perhaps 400 years ago the Medici cursed the city with “thou shall not club” as the city pickings are slim. This proves no obstacle for the Explorers, whose unbounded energy and thrill-seeking nature means they can be found in the notoriously faraway (for Florence) multi-disciplinary space Combo Social Club (via Mannelli 2), which often hosts cool concerts, art exhibitions and pop-up shops as well as full-on raves. Explorers love living, in this case, on the edge of the city as their woops and yowls echo through the streets of Campo di Marte when they’re routinely spat out at 4am by the pulsating ex-warehouse. Once recovered from hedonistic voyages to the suburbs, Explorers will find themselves at home at Buca 10 (via Fiesolana 10), a recently opened wine bar in the Santa Croce area that’s open from 3pm to midnight. Serving cured meats and cheese plates alongside niche wines, the space is multi-functional, hosting artist-oriented events and exhibitions.
…Practical, caring and popular with their peers
Sentinels, practical as they are, are seen only seasonally on the most authentic Florentine night out. It’s difficult in the winter months, when the large flagstones that pave the squares and church steps of Sant’Ambrogio, piazza della Santissima Annunziata and other communal areas lock in the icy cold rather than the throbbing heat of an August day, to lead their friends to an al fresco gathering. In the summer, however, such spaces are filled with their packs of pals who, equipped with beer and wine brought from home or nearby watering holes, simultaneously stand and sit, while their chatter echoes around the piazza before floating down the city arteries. The premise of “moving on somewhere” to a bar or club hangs perpetually in the air, but the positive energy from the group’s Sentinel means “un’altra birra” and five more minutes of chatting is irresistible. On milder winter nights, the most steadfast of the category still uphold the social order of their tribe by agreeing to a quick beer in the piazza before moving on to somewhere warm and, more importantly, inside. The jovial Sentinel chaperones their clan to cosy pub James Joyce (lungarno Benvenuto Cellini 1R) to warm their cockles and carry on the conversation.