L’osteria di Giovanni in Florence, Italy Review

L’osteria di Giovanni will Delight your Palates

By Ari Kane, Photographs by Daniella Veras


L’osteria di Giovanni is an impressive, third generation family run restaurant in Florence. The food was outstanding, the service was marvelous and the ambiance was so refined and welcoming. It exuded a very trendy vibe with famous art adorning the walls.  It is a beautiful restaurant located just north over the Ponte alla Corraria Bridge on the north side of Florence.


We had the pleasure of meeting Caterina, the sweet chef turned manager. When the restaurant manager is a chef you know that all plates out of the kitchen will be up to par. Matteo, who is also a musician, was our attentive waiter.  They got us off to a great start with a complimentary fried pasta starter that we likened to phenomenal salty elephant ears.

The Goose Breast Carpaccio was a savory epiphany. It was one of our favorite dishes in all of Italy. The smoked goose breast was doused with balsamic vinegar to create a heavenly taste. It was so intensely rich and scrumptious. The fatty thin sliced meat with the amazing smoky flavor and balsamic taste will blow you away. If it is not on the menu, ask for it anyway.


Wherever you go, you must try the Pappa al Pomodoro, a traditional Florentine dish consisting of bread and tomato soup. There are so many variations of this dish across the region, it’s a joy to experience the different interpretations of this classic dish.  Giovanni’s Pappa had an alluring aroma that stimulated our oral glands. The dish is so rich that olive oil shot up the side of the bowl as we inserted our spoons into the chunks of bread saturated with ripe tomato flavor. It was a true Italian staple executed exceptionally.


The Home-Made Pici with Sausage and Kale Ragout was perfectly cooked, hand-rolled pasta (like fat spaghetti) with rich meaty flavor. This is not your typical spaghetti and Bolognese. You wish your American pasta could taste as amazing as this, but sadly it can’t. The deep and gratifying flavor will leave you satiated; yet still wanting more.


The Sirloin Steak with Braised Onions and Pesto was bursting with sexy red flavor. It was at its best when it was combined with the onions, which must have been braised by angels because they were absolutely divine. The meat was accompanied by an enjoyable, and not too overpowering pesto sauce. The ingredients all blended together to create a solid plate.


The Fried Zucchini Blossoms are an absolute MUST order. They have a perfect golden batter crunch that is some of the best fry we have ever tasted. It is akin to an addictive dessert fry minus the sugar. They use peanut oil which makes the flavor utterly sensational. Our sincerest condolences to those peanut allergic unlucky bastards who are not privy to partake in this majestic dish.


The Hedonist, who grew up on his Grandma’s famous apple pie, is rarely impressed by others. L’osteria di Giovanni’s sensational Apple Pie with Almonds and Cinnamon was super moist, substantial and left him utterly enchanted. The exquisite sugar glazed crust was tremendously addictive. It was served with real vanilla cream ice cream (the yellow kind), topped with awesome biscotti crumbs giving the ice cream an alluring texture. If you like apple pie, pie, dessert, apples or even just food, definitely order this pie.


L’osteria di Giovanni will gratify you with its warm and inviting ambiance, sensational food, and its exceptional service. There is also a luminescent wine cellar to dine in as well. It is absolutely worth dining at next time you are in Florence, so make your reservations in advance.