The lampredotto sandwich in Florence
If there’s one thing that the Florentines know how to make well, it’s bringing back to success humble culinary traditions. Think lampredotto – one of the four stomachs of the bovine, the abomasum – which has always represented the local variant nose to tail cuisine, that has historically relied on offal to feed the less wealthy. A custom that has become a symbol of the city, hand in hand with its quintessential sandwich dipped in broth and filled with freshly cut lampredotto. And so the chopping of knives of every self-respecting tripe seller has entered the gastronomic myth of Florence, conquering everyone. Here are the best places for signature sandwiches.
Where to eat lampredotto sandwiches in Florence
‘L Trippaio di San Frediano
Local reference for many Florentines who want to rediscover the flavours of the past in their lampredotto sandwich. In addition to the classic, lampredotto can also be ordered on the plate, boiled or stewed in tomato sauce, and each time it is declined in a different way, always following traditional Tuscan recipes.
Tripe seller at a stone’s throw from Piazza della Signoria where food lovers can find all the classics of the regional repertoire. There are sandwiches with local cured meats and cheese, sauces and vegetables, such as cooked ham, livers and truffles, or panino with soppressata, salsa verde and artichokes. However, it is always the lampredotto sandwich that reigns supreme, a timeless classic.
Il Trippaio del Porcellino
This local in Piazza del Mercato Nuovo is more than a century old, in business since the late 19th century. Tripe and lampredotto are the heart of the proposal, made just as the Florentine tradition dictates, to be enjoyed with a glass of house wine.
Ditta Eredi Nigro
For Lorenzo Nigro, lampredotto is a family business: it was his grandfather Luigi, together with his wife Mara, who started this tradition that still continues today. Lampredotto with homemade salsa verde and bread well soaked in broth has been enjoyed for years at the Mercato Centrale, the perfect place to welcome Italian and foreign tourists for a taste of authentic Tuscan cuisine, as soon as health regulations will allow it.
At the San Lorenzo market there’s a great food court on the ground floor, as proven by Nerbone, a kiosk that offers one of the best sandwiches with lampredotto in all of Florence, where the meat is prepared with skill and technique. And there are also Florentine tripe or stufato di pelliccia (literally, fur stew) so called for the presence of “many potatoes and a little meat,” in addition to the lampredotto meat enjoyed on the plate.
Il Trippaio di Sant’Ambrogio
Flag bearer of the Tuscan tradition that for years has conquered Florentines and tourists with its delicious sandwiches that never tire: the tripe seller at the Sant’Ambrogio Market is a guarantee for those looking for the typical flavours of the past. A simple but delicious sandwich, full of tasty salsa verde and made with quality meat.
Not far from the Sant’Ambrogio Market, Sergio Pollini’s joint continues to rule in the lampredotto game: together with his son Peter, Sergio prepares excellent sandwiches every day, soft and tasty, and a worthy Florentine tripe. It’s possible to find a bit of a queue, but the tasting of the various house specialties is worth the wait.
Trippaio di Porta Romana
First there was Mario Albergucci – Marione for aficionados – a former butcher who ran the Porta Romana stall together with his wife Manola. For many this was the best street food in town. The couple left the business in 2016, but the restaurant still exists and maintains a high quality standard. In addition to lampredotto – exquisite – there are boiled tongue, “poppa” and all the offal loved by the Florentines.
by Michela Becchi