Fresh basil, vegetables and fruit are just the things you crave for when being in Florence. There are places where you can always find the freshest of the fresh to enjoy a new recipe or to eat incredibly well. Mercato Centrale has all of that. Alike Mercato Centrale
in San Lorenzo
, Sant’ Ambrogio
offers a similar market but a bit smaller. And with the same quality.
Inside Mercato Centrale
was built in 1874 and is one of the largest indoor markets in Italy. A market that has fresh meat, fish, cheese and a handful of restaurants where you get served the best of the best and at a low cost. The vendors inside are very kind and willing to assist you. When you approach these vendors do you best to try to speak Italian. You may ask to taste a piece of cheese or prosciutto to see if you enjoy it, before you make your purchase.
Delicious Trattoria inside Mercato Sant' Ambrogio
Mercato Sant’Ambrogio has a different feel to it. As Mercato Centrale and the surroundings is mostly full of touristic kiosks and people, Sant’ Ambrogio has all fruit and vegetable vendors surrounding the building. Inside there are more vendors that sell meat, fish etc. but then there are also a few restaurants or sandwich counters where you can find trippa alla fiorentina and lamprodotto.
A vendor inside Mercato Sant'Ambrogio selling some cheese
If you enjoy the delicious traditional foods you can find in Florence, these two markets are the places to stop. You can see the daily life of the vendors and locals and how they interact. Foodies will adore the way you are able to choose you own vegetables, fruit and the displays of each vendor is something you will only see in Italy. The experience itself will inspire you to cook your most delicious recipe yet with the freshest of the fresh ingredients you have accumulated at these markets.
Photo Credit: Inside Mercato Centrale, Trattoria inside Sant’Ambrogio, Vendor selling cheese