SimBIOsi is a guarantee of great coffee along via de’ Ginori. Now the organic eatery due north of the Duomo is serving an honest brunch in relaxed Tuscan shabby chic surroundings. Coffee lovers might continue to grab an Ethiopian or Brazilian espresso to go from the street-side counter, but they should also be persuaded to pause for a bite of breakfast at this cozy and considered hangout.
Served from 9am to 3pm every day, internationals and locals sit down on upholstered dining chairs, like the ones your nonna used to have, for a brunch that’s as wholesome as it is delicious. Made simply to order using the freshest local ingredients, choose your eggs cooked every which way—fried, scrambled or poached—with an array of touches based on your personal penchant for bacon, ricotta or in-season vegetables. Beneath the impressive brick vaulted ceiling, we cut into a perfectly cooked poached egg, the orangey yolk oozing into the green of the avocado toast topped with flavourful grilled tomatoes. Two Florentine friends catch up on the latest gossip from their friendship group while relishing a Caesar salad and a bagel filled with pesto and courgettes.
A solo American traveller tucks into a generous bowl of granola, berries and yogurt, the striking rabbit in a top hat nursing a spritz in a gilded frame on the exposed wall making for a dining companion. As we settle into our places at an antique upcycled wooden table, a guy in his twenties, perhaps from Spain or Portugal, leaves his chicken wings with mango mayo mid-meal to greet an acquaintance (another student on the same course?).
A grilled sandwich stuffed with buttery stracciatella cheese and salty Tuscan prosciutto takes our attention away from the world inside and out, which is irresistibly on view through the arch window with its signature cast iron detail. SimBIOsi is that sort of place, where people meet up, hang out and unwind, a daytime extension of the college campus or your living room. The staff are just as lovely as the food: our waitress cannot help but compliment a regular customer on her newly inked tattoo before she orders a freshly pressed carrot, apple, orange, lemon and ginger juice.
Sweet delights also make up the brunch offering. A tantalizing pile of pancakes smothered in salted caramel and slivers of toasted bananas is particularly toothsome, but it’s the light and lovely avocado and lime cheesecake that steals the show. Equally popular are the house-made carrot cake and banana bread, especially when washed down with that really good coffee that has made SimBIOsi such a destination in the first place.