In the middle of the classic outdoor market Mercato San Lorenzo, where you can find all kinds of leather goods and accessories, is the huge old Mercato Centrale. The ground floor hosts the morning market where you can buy fresh fish, meat and fruit or have something to eat until after lunch time every day except Sunday. In 2014 constructions were finished and the second floor is now full of various foods in a beautiful and airy space.
The concept isn’t new but welcome to the Florence food scene. Great for a family or group with different food habits since there is meat, pizza, pasta, vegetarian, truffle, a place to try the typical “lampredotto” (cow stomach) and much more. Or share! Among my favourites are the “chianina” hamburger, fried mixed fish and the pizza.
If you’re not hungry just have a look around, shop for food or books and sit down for a drink or ice cream. Depending on day and time it’s more or less crowded and sometimes it’s difficult to coordinate hot food from different counters and finding a free table. So patience can be required. There’s also the calmer restaurant over the busy second floor. Mercato centrale is definitely worth a visit when in Florence.