Ah the famous Aperitivos! One of my favorite things about Italy that I feel needs to be transported to America.
Essentially it is their equivalent to happy hour, although it is much more than that. It is a drink with food.
How it works: You go to the bar, find a table, and order a drink. The drink may cost 10 euros, but that will include the buffet. Usually all drinks are the same price (whether its wine or a cocktail). When your drink comes, pay the server, and you are free to get as many plates of food as you’d like!
Here is a list of some of my favorite aperitivos, but as you will see, they are everywhere.
Rifrullo– Located on the other side of the river underneath Piazzale Michelangelo. 10 euros, good assortment of food, nice ambiance with many Italians. During the summer they open up the rooftop. Rifrullo is also a popular bar to have a drink on the weekends.
Colle Bereto– Located in Piazza Strozzi near Piazza dellla Reppubblica. A bit of a chic vibe. 10 euros. You can eat outside or inside. A decent array of food. On the weekend, this turns into a hot bar to get a drink.
Kitsch– I wouldn’t say it is my favorite, but it is a popular one in Florence. There are two locations. One near San Marco and the other near Piazza Beccaria. 10 euros. Lots of food.
River sull’Arno– On the river, so if you sit outside you get a nice view. They don’t do blanket prices, so what drink you order is what you pay. Food is ok. I really just like it because it is on the river.
Flo– I haven’t been yet for an aperitivo, but it is definitely on my to-do list. I’ve heard it is nice and I love coming here on Friday and Saturday nights to dance. It is a chic, outdoor spot that overlooks Florence. It is located near Piazzale Michelangelo and is only open during the summer months. At night is turns into a hot dance club.
Zoe/Negroni– Located next to each other and near Rifrullo. They have a good aperitivo.
Moyo/Soul Kitchen/Oibo– All located near each other on the same street near Santa Croce. Decent ambiance and decent assortment of food.
Westin Excelsior Terrace: This is a hotel terrace with panoramic views. The aperitivo is fantastic as well. Very upscale. It costs about 18 euros.
Bars in Sant’Ambrogio: A bit of a hipster vibe. This small collection of bars has basic aperitivos that are pretty cheap. One was only 5 euros.
Cafe Letterario Le Murate: In between Sant’ Ambrogio and Santa Croce. This is a nice bar to have an aperitivo. Interesting fact: It was transformed from a prison.