Thursday, May 7, 2015

The Sartorialist’s Italian Tips….Trattoria Sostanza



For those of you planning some time in Italy this summer, over the next couple of weeks i’ll be sharing a few tips of places you really must visit.


Florence is an obvious must see for ANY trip to Italy.


Tucked away on Via del Porcellana, is Trattoria Sostanza. I hate to use the phrase “it feels like old italy“,  but this place really does.


It’s tiny and it’s crowded, but it’s so charismatic and the food is SO good. You have to try the chicken dish (i don’t remember what it’s called exactly….but I bet you could just say Chicken!!! and they’ll know). The last time i was there, I had the pasta (pictured above) and it was equally as good.

I think it’s usually pretty packed at night, so lunch seems like a better option. Whichever time of the day you choose is up to you, but make sure you spend at least one meal at Trattoria Sostanza.



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  1. With Or Without Shoes

    May 7, 2015 at 2:19 pm

    Nice tips!

    Kisses from

  2. ~ Carmen ~

    May 7, 2015 at 2:21 pm

    Hooray! I’d love to see more of your tips! Someone as well-traveled as you likely has a lot of stories, places, & tricks to make the most of each trip. I love the black & white photo; I feel like that shot most captures that “old Italy” feel you were talking about. :]

    // â–˛ â–˛

  3. sandy

    May 7, 2015 at 2:22 pm

    If I go to Florence, I will go there for sure, it looks so traditional, and the italian food looks yummy yummy: de – li – cious :)

  4. Alaster

    May 7, 2015 at 2:58 pm

    Definitely a must visit. In addition to the amazing butter chicken, the bisteca is one of the best in town.

  5. Freya - Fashionable People

    May 7, 2015 at 3:09 pm

    oh it so small i’m sure it is easily missed! Looks so sweet and authentic

  6. Albert

    May 7, 2015 at 4:19 pm

    Cute little place. Nice tips!

    Best, Albert | Palming Pebbles

  7. Carolina

    May 7, 2015 at 4:29 pm

  8. JV

    May 7, 2015 at 4:54 pm

    we’ll be near the ponte vecchio in firenze in july so we’ll swing by for a quick bite on your recommendation. i agree with the previous poster, you probably could recommend many great places to eat around the world which you could occassionally post. although i understand your blog leans more towards photography and fashion rather then food but i’m sure you’ve encountered some great places so please share. i would also recommend your followers to check out a great instagram of italian food by Elizabeth Minchilli (

  9. pippi hepburn

    May 7, 2015 at 5:16 pm

    Wow, thank you so much for sharing places to eat! I have been to Florence 4 times and another place I could live. We were in an internet cafe on the ponte vecchio at midnight one night and it was so surreal, the old bridge and the new technology. Putting this restaurant in my contacts.

  10. Sara

    May 7, 2015 at 6:27 pm

    Their chicken dish is called pollo al burro! And their bistecca is also amazing. In Berkeley, CA there is a restaurant called Trattoria Corso that serves pollo al burro as well. They learned how to make it from Trattoria Sostanza. If you can’t make it to Italy, you can get a little bit of Firenze in California!

  11. Trinity

    May 7, 2015 at 7:33 pm

    We are taking our adult daughter on a bus tour from Venice…then Florence…then Rome.

    Do you have tips?

  12. lauren at adorn la femme

    May 7, 2015 at 8:26 pm

    The Italians know how to turn chicken into a masterpiece! My Italian great grandfather, from Salerno, handed down a family recipe that looks identical to the one in the sautee pan (with lemon and a crunchy light crust)! Can’t wait to go to Florence to see the statue of David, in addition to this place of “eating heaven”!

    adorn la femme

  13. carole

    May 7, 2015 at 8:38 pm

    I’m hungry!

  14. LoveCompassionateLee

    May 7, 2015 at 8:54 pm

    Thanks for the insight! Quality meals are definitely needed for me to enjoy my travels.

    Happy Thursday

  15. Yann

    May 7, 2015 at 10:29 pm

    450m away from that place I got the best gnocchis al tartufo ever at La Carabaccia. I had just arrived in Florence for the first time, it was in August on a warm weekday around 11pm, everything nearby was closed except that place. They were about to close, but they stopped cleaning up to serve us on their patio.

    It was love at first sight with this city !

  16. Fannice

    May 8, 2015 at 1:28 am

    Great tip for the incoming Pitti edition.
    We will try and let you know!

  17. Lis

    May 8, 2015 at 5:32 am

    Heart the elegant Italian waiters and the No Credit Card sign at the front entrance/window. Old school Italian… =)

  18. Anna

    May 8, 2015 at 5:58 am

    I have my doubts about the authenticity of the place that serves chicken in Florence. Typical meats eaten in Florence (and by “typical” I mean “traditional”) are beef and whatever comes from the woods and fields. Chicken and turkey are relatively new types of meat and they are not very common in Italy, particularly in places that wish to pass for the ones serving dishes from la cucina tipica.

    • Lia

      May 9, 2015 at 4:09 am

      While Tuscany is most famous for it’s cinghiale dishes and Fiorentina steak, chicken is also typical even if it is seen a little less on menus !!
      - una ragazza toscana :)

    • Lorenzo

      June 11, 2015 at 5:36 am

      I have my doubts that you really know what is typical in Florence and Tuscany. Chicken is also extremely typical, while turkey is not so typical but surely it’s not a relatively new type of meat!

      Source: myself, a tuscan guy born and raised in Tuscany

  19. antela

    May 8, 2015 at 8:23 am

    Lovely =)
    kiss from Italy

  20. dario fattore

    May 8, 2015 at 9:06 am

    buonissimooo viva la cucina italiana

    dario fattore –

  21. doganberk

    May 9, 2015 at 5:23 am

    the artichoke omelet is amazing there!

  22. Manoela

    May 9, 2015 at 1:00 pm

    Nice tip! Don’t know if I will be able to go to Florence but I already got my ticket to Milan so I’ll keep attention to all your tips!!

  23. John Forsman

    May 10, 2015 at 12:07 am

    oh, I thought Sostanza was the most famous place in Firenzia for Chiana beef. It certainly is great there.

  24. Merve

    May 11, 2015 at 10:13 am

    I have visited Trattoria Sostanza in 2013, we made a reservation long before we went there. But it was a bit dissappointment. For those who really misses some homemade food, it may be a good choise. It is a little over priced when you consider normality of the foods..
    Anyway it is always nice being in Firenze :)

  25. Maria

    May 11, 2015 at 4:25 pm

    Last September we were in Florence and tried to go to Trattoria Sostanza for lunch. They said “go away!” Super rude. A man who was opening place for lunch did not care because to eat there you need to make reservations month in advance. After this restaurant was featured on Rachel Ray show it was very popular with American tourists so if one really wants to eat there make sure have a reservation! Good Luck.

  26. Mari

    May 14, 2015 at 9:24 am

    I visited Trattoria Sostanza in 2010 in a chilly night in February and it was hands down one of the top 5 best meals of my life.

  27. stacey

    May 15, 2015 at 5:42 am

    Try Restaurant Oliviero in Florence next time. Francesco is a real gem and the food is the best. We ate there last night. Perfect

  28. Mirøslav Hristøff

    May 17, 2015 at 7:31 am

    “it feels like old italy“ sounds really great. I like places which take me back into the past.

  29. Stan

    June 4, 2015 at 7:06 pm

    This is the right place ever for Italian food. No doubts!

  30. Menchu

    June 19, 2015 at 10:00 am

    We will be in Florence in a few days! Thanks Scott for your recommendations and suggestions!

  31. Coral (Curious Appetite)

    February 12, 2016 at 4:54 am

    Nice work! Yes, agree with Sara it’s their pollo al burro (who would have thought this random dish would have become so iconic for this humble trattoria?) I wonder how many chickens they go through per week :)
    In any case, cheers from a food blogger based in Florence! If you’re town again shoot me a holler- would love to show you some more eats x

  32. Jeff

    March 28, 2017 at 5:53 am

    The name of the chicken dish is “pollo al burro”, ie. butter chicken. The chicken is cooked in a special butter which can stand high temperatures without blackening. It is a creation of this restaurant which I have not seen anywhere else, so it is right to say that it is not traditional Tuscan. But it seems that this recipe always existed. A traditional innovation in a sense.

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