Bread might be the main course at this year’s March mainstay, Taste, but healthy eating is the all-round pairing.
From March 9 to 11, the Stazione Leopolda welcomes an array of natural food companies for the fourteenth edition of Florence’s favourite food event. Grosseto-based firm Severino Becagli serves Tuscan-grown spirulina, a microalga with a high concentration of nutrients and antioxidants, while superfood turmeric is the star ingredient in Friscous, a Puglia-produced couscous embraced by top chefs such as Heinz Beck. Change up your breakfast with a bowlful of Mimima Granola, a beautifully packaged mixture of oats, seeds, nuts, dried fruit, agave syrup and Himalayan pink salt for sweet and savoury muesli. High in protein and low in fat content, Arcenni Tuscany presents their organic snail pates and sauces made in Capannoli, near Pisa. Shots of healthiness arrive from Arezzo as Biobacche Toscane displays honey, pure extracts and vegetal crisps. Countless olive oil producers will set up stall in the former station: Frantoio di Santa Téa and Frantoio Franci from Tuscany, Frantoio Bianco from Liguria, Muraglia from Puglia, and more. Established by two young entrepreneurs from Bolzano, Monthea is rehashing herbal teas. Handpicked fruit, flowers and leaves from Alto Adige infuse flavourful and healthy beverages: think apples, raspberries, mint, blueberries, blackberry leaves and elderflowers.
Bakers will be at work and on stage, kneading fresh bread for all to sample. Highlights include the Taste Oven with Pistoia-based bakers Nicola Giuntini and Piero Capecchi leading a workshop at Florence’s opera house and a talk about the geography and vocabulary of bread. Ancient grains and contemporary flavours, Fratelli Lunardi’s stand is a must for lovers of leavening.
FUORI DI TASTE BITS & BITES
Restaurants, bars and hotels host a selection of food-centric events during the weekend of Taste. Here’s our pick of the crop.
March 7: Ancient grains pasta and pizza night at Simbiosi Organic (6pm, via de’ Ginori 56-60R; price per dish; 055 0640115) / Filippo Bartolotta’s The Amazing Italian Wine Journey at Irene Bistro, Hotel Savoy (7pm, piazza della Repubblica 7; 65 euro for 9 tastings; 055 27355891) / Anarchic dinner with Cristiano Tomei and Michele Leo at Pizzeria Santarpia (8pm, largo Annigoni 9C; 60 euro; 055 245829)
March 8: Agnoni and natural flavours at FOOO Bistrot (6pm, viale Lavagnini 70-72; 6 euro aperitivo, 13 euro dinner; 055 4606701); Calugi truffles and Palagiaccio farm produce at Ora d’Aria (lunch+dinner, via dei Georgofili 11R; 055 2001699)
March 9: Cioccociak at Eataly Firenze and Cinema La Compagnia (3:45 chocolate workshop at Eataly + 5pm showing of Willy Wonka and The Chocolate Factory at Cinema La Compagnia, via Cavour 50R + Via de Martelli 22R; 7 euro workshop+film, 4 euro film; 055 268451, 055 0153601; Boccondivino aperitivo with finocchiona and prosciutto at Toscanino in Rinascente (6pm, piazza della Repubblica; 12 euro; 055 4933468)
March 10: Ortobello market at Riccardo Barthel (9am-4pm, via dei Serragli 234R; free); organic pizza and Del Forte beer at Simbiosi (6pm, via de’ Ginori 56R; price per dish; 055 0640115); Malandrone 1477 Parmesan and Peter in Florence gin dinner at Plaza Hotel Lucchesi with chef Edoardo Tilli (8pm, lungarno della Zecca Vecchia 38; 25 euro; 055 2623575); cocktails with a coffee twist at “Coffee Cheers: Dinicaffè Turns 80” with Lucia Montanelli of The Bar at The Dorchester Hotel in London (6pm, Dinicaffè, via dei Bastioni 38, 055 6812785; free).
March 11: Truffles and Brunello at Simbiosi (6pm, via de’ Ginori 56R; price per dish; 055 0640115); Chocolate dinner at Enoteca La Sosta del Rossellino (8pm; via del Rossellino 2R; 40 euro)