One of the points of our trip to Tuscany was the Antica Macelleria Cecchini butcher shop, where you can come for dinner and taste a real Florentine butcher steak from the 8th generation. I read and heard a lot about this place and, of course, curiosity prevailed.
Probably, this will be the first [I will not say that negative] Unauthorized review of this place. Maybe I’m not a foodie, maybe I didn’t understand some kind of “schtick”, and maybe this place just overtook the fate of a “tourist place”. I’ll just share my subjective impressions and photos, and you yourself decide whether you should include this institution in your itinerary.
Butcher Shop Dario Ceccini
For the first time I learned about Dario Ceccini and his butcher shop about 3 years ago .
You need to book a table in the restaurant at the “old meat” in advance, I booked a month in advance. Every day you can go either to lunch (two “approaches” – at 13:00 or 13:30) or to dinner (also two “approaches” – at 20:00 or at 20:30). Total 4 “performances” per day or 28 per week. Is it possible to maintain a “philosophy” with so many events?
The price is fixed – 50 euros per person.
How to book dinner with Dario Ceccini
Booking is easy even without knowledge of languages. Go to the website https://www.dariocecchini.com/en/to-the-table/officina-della-bistecca/#book_officina Fill out the reservation form (important: specify a valid email, confirmation will be sent to it) and wait for an answer . The answer came to me the next day, the reservation was confirmed. It is also very important to confirm the reservation 1-2 days before dinner. Just send a reply letter, for example, with the text “Hello! We confirm our booking) Thank you! ”
The butcher shop is located in the town of Panzano in Chianti, 40 km from Florence . Keep in mind that the wine will be in unlimited quantities, therefore, I would recommend booking a hotel somewhere nearby (or find a non-drinking driver).
Or look at B&B Fagiolari (from 120 € per night with breakfast) 4 km from the shop, a very cozy traditional stone house with an interesting interior, a swimming pool and views of the endless Tuscan fields.
Dinner at Dario Ceccini: my review
So, I turn to the review. The confirmation letter was written to arrive 15 minutes before the indicated time for a small aperitif.
Arriving in 15-20 minutes, we already saw a huge crowd at the entrance to the shop.
Squeezed in, marked by last name, and for some reason we were immediately invited to the second floor. Hey, what about an aperitif?)))
Nevertheless, we stood for a while, looked around. Here is Dario
The freshest meat, natural sausages and lard in the window
And the traditional Italian aperitif: simple and tasty. Bread with olive oil and salt with herbs (also produced by Cecchini), sausage (natural meat) and lard.
Then we rise to the second floor to our places and wait for the beginning.
On the tables are vegetables, wine, olive oil, which Dario’s assistants pour into small cups and add salt (throw from a distance of 1 meter, of course, now salt is everywhere!)
You can bring your own wine if you are super gourmet, but the local Chianti is good.
The first course brought beef tartare. Probably, if you are a foodie, you will understand the meaning of this dish. For everyone else, I’m telling you: tartar is raw meat, a little seasoned with salt and pepper. Imagine the stuffing from which you cook cutlets at home, this stuffing is tartare)))
Those who are shocked by the sight of raw meat are unlikely to eat it. I spread on bread. Ate. Fine. But even once, I would not specifically order this dish in a restaurant.
I came over and saw how the meat was being cut. For a real bistecca alla fiorentina there are no degrees of roasting, all meat is served with blood.
Then they bring a side dish – beans seasoned with olive oil, I set myself a little try. Still, we didn’t come here for beans with celery.
Carry meat again
Put a piece on a plate. By the way, not very big.
Reviews that “they will feed meat until you burst”, nevertheless, it seems to me, a little exaggerated. “Supplement” was carried only once, at the end (perhaps it was necessary to shout to the whole hall that there were hungry Russians, but I did not dare :)). Without vegetables and bread, I could not eat too much for a very long time. Seriously.
Then Cecchini himself went into the hall, exchanged a few words with a few guests, took a picture with someone … and left.
The next piece of meat (everyone has a menu, you can see what is called and what is the order of the dishes).
Next was “Chianti oil” or, as it was called, “ice cream”, in fact – warm ground lard. The Europeans didn’t like at all, our “verdict” was like this: would have to freeze it, but file it with the garlic))))
The next “highlight” of the evening is potato baked in foil. POTATO !!! I will not write anything about 7,000 rubles given for dinner, otherwise someone will understand me incorrectly 🙂
And now, perhaps, the last piece (maybe someone will distinguish it from the previous ones :))
What is the conclusion? I’ll start with the pros:
- You can try the meat of a special, very rare breed (“Chyanina”)
- The meat, however, is of high quality and fresh. You can, without fear, eat unroasted steaks, and even raw minced meat ( tartar)
- Unusual place with history.
- Wine really flows like water.
- If you are not a superfood gourmet, then distinguishing the meat of this breed from the meat of another breed is a little difficult. Just delicious and high quality.
- The place is untwisted and tourist, lunch-dinner delivered to the conveyor.
- The person Dario Ceccini left me indifferent. For comparison: after meeting the owner of the grocery store in the earthquake destroyed by Castelllucco di Norcia, I cried.
- The “show” I expected did not happen. Throw salt in oil, shout “Meet Bistecca alla Fiorentina” and go out for 5 minutes to the guests – this is not a show.
- 100 euros for two for such a dinner, for me, a little expensive.
- Far from Florence. Going specifically I do not see the point. You can find a good restaurant in Florence, which serves excellent bistecca.
I repeat, this is my subjective opinion. To go to Cecchini or not – decide for yourself! And if you went, share your impressions in the comments!