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Food events in Florence

Events in Florence - dinner in Florence

eating in FlorenceRifrullo program 'About Food' April 2007

The “RIFRULLO” is pleased to present the program of special dinners, tastings and events of April 2007, that will take place every Wednesday evening.

April Planning

Wednesday, 4ht April 2007: “Dinner with Mr. Giammarco Mazzanti – Beans of Tuscany”
A menu presenting dishes prepared with a selection of different beans, produced in the Tuscan territory.

Wednesday, 11th April 2007: Compared tasting of Chianti wines (Siena hills), combined with a selection of hams, salamis and cheeses of the territory.

dinner in FlorenceWednesday, 18th April: a dinner with specialities from the Neaples country, with compared tastings of buffalo mozzarella cheese.

Wednesday, 25th April, 2007: Tastings of wines from the Piemonte region, produced by “Fontanafredda”: White wine (Gavi), Red wine (Barbera, Dolcetto), sweet wine (Moscato) presented with a selection of regional products.

il Rifrullo is a newly refined restaurant and bar in Florence.
Close to Porta San Niccolo it's open every day.

il Rifrullo
0039 055 234.26.21
v. S.Niccolò 55/r
50125 Firenze


Sonar Film Festival in Florence

Sonar Film Festival - Firenze Film Festival 2007
The Sonar International Short Film Festival announces its seventh annual competition, celebrating the best film/video artists. The festival will be held on March 2007 in Firenze (Italy), and will include the best in fiction, experimental, animation, and documentary shorts. The festival seeks the quality, the confrontational, the intercultural, the innovation.

You can see the selected films of more than 1400 films arrived for the 2007 edition of Sonar International Short Film Festival.
Firenze Film Festival – II ed. Sonar International Short Film Festival – VII ed.
Firenze e Provincia, 24/31 marzo 2007

Programme 2007

March 29 – Istituto Francese di Firenze (piazza Ognissanti 2)
18 Incroci
19,15 Visual 1
20 Made in Holland
20,45 Anime 1
21,30 Sonar Story
22 Estremo

March 30 – Mediateca Regionale Toscana (via san Gallo 25, Firenze)
15,30 Meeting: short films in Italy
Florentine screenings.

March 30 – Istituto Francese di Firenze (piazza Ognissanti 2)
18 Gli anni più belli?
19,15 Anime 2
20 Parlez vous Francais?
20,45 Visual 2
21,30 Sonar Story
22 Fratelli d’Italia

March 31 – tan-gram (via dei Serragli 3r, Firenze)
21,30 Sonar International Short Film Festival Awards
22,15 Special: di Riccardo Sinigallia’s music clips with director’s presence. Dj set

April 18 – Centro Giovani di Calenzano (Via F. Petrarca 180)
21 Sonar International Short Film Festival awarded films

In collaboration with Provincia di Firenze, Comune di Firenze, Mediateca Regionale Toscana, Comune di Calenzano, Comune di Agliana (Pt), Istituto Francese di Firenze, Ambasciata del Regno dei Paesi Bassi, Arci.

Mediateca Regionale Toscana is a cultural foundation whose main purpose is to promote multimedia, audiovisual and cinematic languages.
Since its founding, in 1984, Mediateca Regionale Toscana has been developing audiovisual and multimedia communication, offering a large multimedia library to students, teachers, other libraries, agencies and institutions. Mediateca Regionale Toscana also takes care of educational and social activities, as well as Tuscan culture and traditions. Finally it produces documentaries about Tuscan landscapes and it promotes cultural events in Tuscany.


What's going on

What's going on in Florence? March is at the end..

Tuesday 27

Teatro Accademia Pontassieve (15 minutes from Florence center), at 9.15 p.m.: Scott Henderson Blues Band. SCOTT HENDERSON (guitar), JOHN HUMPHREY (electric bass), ALAN HERTZ (drums): somewhere between Jazz style and technique an Rock energy and enthusiasm. At the head of his band Henderson prefers an instrumental technique that reminds guitar heroes like Steve Ray Vaughan and Jimi Hendrix, often using distortion and pedals. The group is always moving between Jazz, Rock and Blues in a terrific and exciting mix. Information office: tel. 055 240397- 0577 985697 – 0577 981298. Box Office tel. 055/210804. Ticket: 15 €.

JAZZ CLUB: JAM SESSION BLUES + HOUSE BAND The Jam Session today has the colours of blues: it will start with STAY FREE BAND, leaded by one of the most important musician in Tuscany blues. Roberto Uggiosi (picture): guitar and voice; Marco Polidori: bass; Luca Solini: drums. Infoline and booking: Vincenzo Ricchi, 331 6477097; after 9.00pm: 055-2479700

Wednesday 28

GOLDEN VIEW OPEN BAR: Stefano Negri Tenor Sax, Marco Barsanti drums, Leonardo Volo Piano.

JAZZ CLUB: A night with the best students and teachers of Music School SOUND of Florence. And then jam session. Infoline and booking: Vincenzo Ricchi, 331 6477097; after 9.00pm: 055-2479700.

SINTETIKA: 81db in concert (picture). William Costello: voice; Kostas Ladopoulos: guitar and choirs; Antonio Cernivivo: bass; Filippo Capursi: drums. A recently born group, but with an experienced team, 81db are in the present line up sinc October 2006 and they published in November their first demo. Alternative heavy rock style, strong grit and sure talent: a debut nt to miss.

REX CAFÉ: “L’altro Brasile” with Gilberto Miranda Fonteles named “Jabuti” (voice guitar) & Gianfranco Narracci (voici and drums). Born in the Nordeste province of Brazil, and resident in Berlin. “Jabuti”: means ‘turtle, in the idiom of Amazon Indios: but Jabuti is a virtuoso and when he plays looks like that there are two guitars and a bass playing on stage instead of one simple guitar; a repertory not only made of samba, but also of xote, forò, axe, bossa… arriving to Italian Malafemmena.

Thursday 29

SINTETIKA: “Indieclub@Sintetika” presenta CYAN & BEN (Fra/Ever). Cyann: voice, tastiere; Ben: voice, guitar; Loic: guitar, keyboards; Charlie: drums, sampler, synth. From Charleville-Mezieres, the cold, grey and rainy town where Rimbaud was born, here comes an extraordinary quartet that has just released its third work, Sweet Beliefs. Echoes of Kraut-Pop, lisergic passages and moments of English school space-rock. A concert of CYANN & BEN is like closing your eyes and letting yourself float towards distant planets. Unmissable! Opening is worked out by the Florentine band TOMVIOLENCE (Blackcandy), that has just released their first cd. Ticket 5 €.

JAZZ CLUB: “L'altro Brasile” with Gilberto Miranda Fonteles named “Jabuti” (voice guitar) & Gianfranco Narracci (voici and drums). Born in the Nordeste province of Brazil, and resident in Berlin. “Jabuti”: means ‘turtle, in the idiom of Amazon Indios: but Jabuti is a virtuoso and when he plays looks like that there are two guitars and a bass playing on stage instead of one simple guitar; a repertory not only made of samba, but also of xote, forò, axe, bossa… arriving to the Italian Malafemmena. Infoline and booking: Vincenzo Ricchi, 331 6477097; after 9.00pm: 055-2479700.

THE LIST OF CLUBS in Florence.

Via dei Bardi, 58r - Firenze Tel: +39055214502 Fax: +390552729343
www.goldenviewopenbar.com - E-mail: info@goldenviewopenbar.com
First of all a great view: just in front of the Ponte Vecchio with wide windows on the Arno river. Then a fine restaurant and a chic cocktail bar. And a good program of traditional Jazz music. Not a cheap restaurant but it’s worth each penny. You can also plan a nice evening with a good drink, nice music and beautiful view.

Via Nuova de’ Caccini, 3 - Firenze tel. 055-2479700 – 339-5630795
(200 meters from the Duomo square)
Opened from 9.00 pm till late at night
Concerts every night from Tuesday to Saturday – closed on Sunday and Monday. Traditional Jazz in a familiar atmosphere. Drinks and light dinners.

Via Fiesolana 23-25r, tel. 055-2480331, Firenze info@rexcafe.it
Near to Piazza Santa Croce, as they call them in Italy, it’s one of the most intriguing venues in Florence. And one of the best cocktail bars in town. Now offers good unplugged concerts just after the aperitif with rich “tapas” around 10.00 pm.

Via Luigi Alamanni 4 - FIRENZE info 333-3591575
Near the Central Railway Station Santa Maria Novella



The VIVICITTA’ FIRENZE HALF MARATHON is listed in the official calendar of the Italian Athletics Federation. The race starts on SUNDAY APRIL 15, 2007 at 10.00 a.m. from Piazza Santa Croce (see the picture), in the heart of Florence.
The maximum time allowed to conclude the race is of 2 and a half hours. After such timetable the organization will not be able to close the roads to traffic.
Times will be measured with an electronic chip system which allows you to measure your real time. The chip must be carried during the race. NO CHIP, NO TIME! The chip charge of € 5 is included in the entry fee and will be returned after the race in the finish area. The chip use is personally reserved and it cannot be charged.

All finishers will get the official medal of the Vivicittà Firenze Half Marathon at the finish line.

Not Competitive run
At the same time a not competitive run of Km 10, will start in Piazza Santa Croce. The registration fee is € 5,00 (payable also on April 15, 2007).

TOMMASINO RUN - Mini-vivicittà for children
Sunday April 15 the second edition of "TOMMASINO the RUN", a kid race of 2 km dedicated to the children of the primary schools will also take place. The registrations are free and they can directly be carried out the morning of the race in Piazza Croce Square. Every kid will receive a gadget. The "mini-vivicittà" it is organized in collaboration with the Fondazione Tommasino Bacciotti for the study, the cure, the assistance and information on children cerebral tumors.

Entry fees
Registrations for: Until 24 march 2007 Until 13 april 2007
residents in Italy €15 + €5 bail chip €20 + €5 bail chip
residents in Europe €20 + €5 bail chip €25 + €5 bail chip
residents in European Countries $25 + $5 bail chip $30 + $5 bail chip
UISP affiliates €12 + €5 bail chip €18 + €5 bail chip
10 km not competitive run €5 €5

Registrations will close on APRIL 13, 2007 (at 7.00 p.m.) unless the limit of 3000 partecipants has been reached before that date. Partecipants can register by mail, fax or online to the following addresses:

UISP Firenze
Lega Atletica - c/o Delegazione Isolotto
Via Pio Fedi, 7 - 50142 Firenze - Italy
Tel. +39 0559060156 - Fax +39 055785305 - cell. +39 3337179966
e-mail: vivicitta@mediauisp.it

What's going on this weekend?

The Cézanne exhibit started this month and goes through July at the Palazzo Strozzi. It’s certainly different from any of the Italian Renaissance art you’ve seen here so far! I’d see it soon, before the crowds of tourist season get too bad.

Another exhibition from now until April, the 1st:

Opening hours:
Week days from 15.00 to 20.00
Friday from 15.00 to 23.00
Saturday and Sunday from 10.30 to 20.00
Admission fee:
€ 8,00 full price
€ 4,00 reduced price
How to reach it: all town buses stop at Piazza della Stazione (Santa Maria Novella train station). Since they are just 50 metres from the Santa Maria Novella train station, Firenze Fiera's venues are within walking distance of any bus stop.

If you are looking for a nice dinner with live jazz music enjoy Golden View Open bar (opened in April 2002). The Restaurant offers an unmatched view of the Ponte Vecchio and the Torre di Arnolfo, with the Galleria degli Uffizi on the right and the Corridoio Vasariano opposite the river Arno.
Suffused candle light and delicatessen accompanied with live Jazz. A unique view in the heart of Florence!
I have been there several times. Every time I went the dinner was delicious, the place was lovely and the waiters very kind..

this is the web site: http://www.goldenviewopenbar.com/

Korea film fest in Florence

Today starts KOREA FILM FEST - Festival of Korean Cinema in Italy

The objective of the festival, other than cultural and institutional collaboration between Italy and Korea of course, is to promote Korea’s seductive cultural universe through the lens of the big screen, art expositions and other organized events.
From new releases to contemporary classics, the festival is one of a kind in Italy, it offers documentaries, short films, and full-length features.. And with their own help, retrospective looks of the principle directors of Korean cinematography.

The Festival, strengthened by a partnership with Samsung Electronics Italia, is now called ‘Samsung Korea Film Fest’. Its fifth edition will begin in Spring 2007. Since 2003 the Festival has been organized by the Associazione Culturale fiorentina Taegukgi – Exchange of Tuscan and Korean Cultures.

The festival is in the Stensen auditorium: Korea film fest - see the program>>
Auditorium Stensen - Via Don Minzoni, 25/c - 50132 - Firenze
Tel: 0577 980701 FAX: 0577 980701
E-mail: info@koreafilmfest.com


Chocolate in Florence

Yesterday was the birthday of a friend of mine, Paola. We went to Hemingway, a nice "bar" in Florence, well known for its chocolates.
It's a place for amateurs of home-made chocolates, coffee, tea, wine, and spirits. You can try their crepes that reinterpret the freshness and simplicity of international cuisines. You can taste a succulent carrot cake, a dangerously chocolate cake, or one of their cheesecakes flavored with raspberry, hazelnut, or grapefruit. Or the innovative "chocolate soup," the ultimate comfort food.
A cold day (like yesterday) will surely have you craving a bowl served with your choice of pistachio, hot pepper or cinnamon wafer. They have fresh biscotti, chocolate chip cookies, muffins and small chocolates, to taste together with a cup of flavored spice tea or coffee.

They have two of the world champion chocolate cakes: Torta Setteveli by Luca Mannori and Torta Pistocchi by Claudio Pistocchi.

The "bar" is in San Frediano, the historic quarter of Florence, the heart of the "old city" beats. It's near Piazza del Carmine and Brancacci Chapel, home of Masaccio's extraordinary frescos.

But you have to be very patient! The place is very small, but you can wait a lot of time before you will be served. So.. enjoy the pictures of Hemingway, the big armchair and wait for more than 30 minutes to get one of the most gorgeous chocolate you have tried!

Hemingway - Piazza piattellina 9r Firenze - tel. 055 - 284781


Fabbrica Europa

stazione leopolda in florenceFabbrica Europa was established by a group of arts professionals in 1994. The aim was to create a home in Florence for the culture of all Europe. In 13 years of activity Fabbrica Europa has become a recognised space for new artistic languages and the contemporary arts. Florence is a city historically designated to house art but burdened with the weight of tradition. It is therefore perhaps one of the most difficult places to deliver a project that is not simply a festival but a concept, a hub of international, multicultural, creation and training. By transforming the ex Stazione Leopolda into a workshop, stage and laboratory of research and experimentation, Fabbrica Europa has given the ex-railway station back to the city, animating a location of industrial archaeology with a new cultural function.

art events in FlorenceOn the threshold of the 14th edition of the festival, Fabbrica Europa is continuing to give space to innumerable local, national and international artistic realities, via projects of production, professional development and cultural exploration.

In 2006 Fabbrica Europa has participated in events and projects touching cities including Vienna, Barcelona, London, Amsterdam, Athens, Copenhagen, Berlin, Lisbon, Cologne, Rotterdam, Breslau, Lille, Brussels, Liverpool, Budapest, Groningen, Bucarest, Tunis, San Paolo and a number of Italian cities.

GEOMETRIE VARIABILI - Stazione Leopolda 4th - 24 May 2007

An exploration of the cultural, geographical and symbolic territories of contemporary Europe.
The keys to the 2007 Fabbrica Europa programme are recent history; the "variable geometry" of the territorial, linguistic, cultural and symbolic European borders; and the currents and pathways that have delineated and continue to trace this geometry in its human and artistic variability.
These concerns provide a continuity with the open laboratories of past years and develop from the permanent and moving workshops undertaken across Europe by Fabbrica Europa, in partnership with public and private institutions, artistic collectives, and networks of experimentation or diffusion of contemporary creativity.

Stazione Leopolda, Florence, Italy 4th - 24 May 2007
How to get there:
BY TRAIN: Santa Maria Novella railroad station. Around one kilometer away: 5 minutes by taxi, 10 minutes by buses no. 1 and 9 (departure from via della scala).
BY AIRPLANE: Florence’s amerigo vespucci airport, peretola. The stazione leopolda is a 15/20 minute taxi ride away.
BY CAR: A11 firenze-mare freeway: Firenze nord exit. A1 freeway, from both milan/bologna and naples/rome: recommended exit: firenze nord. After exiting the freeway, take viale guidoni and viale redi, following the signs for the city center, in the direction of porta al prato.
BY BUS: Lines 1-9-12-16-17-26-27-80, Porta al prato bus stop.


Study abroad in Florence

I've just received an invitation from SUF (Syracuse University in Florence):
Week of the South: a concert, lecture and film to help explore cultural exchange and integration in the 21st Century. The “Week of the South” is dedicated to the “World’s South;” in particular, Africa. The themes of this event will vary, yet they all pertain to a wider global vision of Italian culture and the crucial position of Italy for the future of Mediterranean relations. Highlights of the week’s events include a lecture by Pap Khouma from Senegal (wednesday, 28 march). A group of African musicians will perform during the week (monday, 26 march), and finally a film about immigration (thursday, 29 march): "Dirty Pretty things" by Stephen Frears (2002). English language, no subtitles.

studying in FlorenceThe Syracuse campus is located just beyond the Florence city center in Piazza Savonarola, a small, park-like public square where neighborhood residents often come to read, walk their dogs, and let their children play. It is just over a ten-minute walk to the city’s historic center. Syracuse University in Florence has 5 academic and administrative buildings all within a five-minute walk of each other. The Villa Rossa overlooks a beautiful European-style garden which connects to the campus library.

university for foreigners in FlorenceThe garden is a beloved component of the SUF campus. This 1,800-square-meter space provides a peaceful retreat where students can study and read, access the wireless connection from their laptops, or simply relax over a cappuccino with friends.

I have been there once, for a party, and I was amazed to discover one of the most loveable place in Florence. I really envied the U.S. students there..!

study in Florence, ItalyThe academic programs include: Architecture, Art History/Fine Arts, Humanities, Italian Language, Studio Arts... in Florence you can study Sculpture and Early Renaissance Art, Late Medieval to Renaissance Painting & Sculpture, Medieval to Renaissance Art & Architecture, Italian Renaissance Art, Renaissance Architecture & Italian Urbanism, Baroque Art & Architecture, but also Architecture, Metalsmithing, Digital Photography...

The Department of Humanities, Social Sciences and Business offers students an opportunity to gain an in-depth knowledge of many aspects of Italian and European society. A wide variety of courses are taught, awarding credits in numerous disciplines from anthropology to political science, from literature to business studies, and from history to sociology and religious studies.

learning italianSUF offers over 60 different internship opportunities with academic credit. Internships in local municipal organizations, museums, libraries, academic institutions and social services are available to eligible students.
Many students have done their internship in Firenze.net, the local portal about Florence.
For more information about the Syracuse University in Florence>>


Barberino Outlet

This huge outlet lies in Barberino del Mugello, in the heart of Tuscany: it's half an hour away from Florence and less than an hour from Bologna.
There are more than 90 shops featuring the best brands with fashion products from previous seasons at prices cut by 30 to 70% all year round. You can buy bags and clothes and shoes and skirts.. made by CK, Adidas, Furla, Guess, Prada, Puma, Guru, Lovable, The bridge, DKNY, Pinko, Piquadro..
Barberino Outlet is located less than a mile from the main italian highway "Autostrada del Sole".
The area, covered by Bologna and Florence airports, enjoys excellent links with Florence, Pistoia and Prato through ordinary motorways.

Opening hours of the Barberino Outlet:

- tuesday to friday from 10 am to 8 pm
- saturday and sunday 10 am to 9 pm
On monday in February, March, April, May, October and November closed.
On monday in January, June, July, August, September and December 2pm to 8pm
Infoline: 055 842 161

In Tuscany there are several outlets between Florence and Arezzo (Valdarno).
The Prada outlet, as it is frequently called is actually called SPACE and it is home to not only Prada. Other names such as Helmut Lang, Miu Miu and Jill Sander. A few years ago, the prices were even better when the Lira was in action, however, prices for PRADA have remained the same, unlike other Italian fashion houses. Make sure you take at least half of a day for your journey. Trains leave to Montevarchi, where the outlet is located, throughout the day. Once you get there, you hop in a cab and you are zipped right to the all white intimidating building. After you press the button for your personal number get ready. Among the many aisles of ornate bags, intricate ties, and gleaming shoes, you can find some great deals.

SPACE (Prada) - Località Levanella, 52025 Montevarchi (AR) - Tel : +39 055 91 901
Opening hours : Normally seven days a we
ek. Please call ahead to check opening hours as they are subject to sudden changes.
Saturday is the busiest day. Admission is possible until 1/2 an hour before closing time.
How to
get there :
By train, take the train to Montevarchi station and then get a cab (about 15 minutes).
By car: take the A1 autostrada - Exit 'Valdarno', Out of the toll turn right and follow signs for Montevarchi or Centro. At the big round about that has an IPER - COOP supermarket exit left.
Then continue towards Arezzo. Pass through Montevarchi and 'Località levanella' after the village pass a gas station and then follow signs for I PELLETTIERI D'ITALIA in the 'Zona Industriale' on the left. The sign for the outlet is at a traffic light. On your left is a huge grey factory that is all Prada and the out let is in the back of the main factory complex. Prada is the hardest to find but the most worth the effort. Do not hesitate to show local people
the address to get a direction, they are quite accustomed to lost fashionistas. During the off seasons, you can basically go to the outlets at anytime. However, during summer hours, all of Japan and California flock to that stainless steele ticket dispenser to get their ticket and wait...and wait...and have a cappuccio at teh chic bar next door....and guess what...wait some more until their number is called. Don't lose your ticket. If you liek an itme, a sales associate will stow it away under your personal number. After your 10 or 15 sweeps around the store, it time to check out. You tell them your number and they ring you up. Hurry before the exit lines get big. Some people buy large and keep going. There is always something here worthwhile to buy!

The Gucci Outlet, is also located outside of Florence at THE MALL. It is actually pretty expensive to get there and the prices are not anything to drop your cheeseburger for.
The other stores at THE MALL are Agnona, Bottega Veneta, Emanuel Ungaro, Ermenegildo Zegna, Giorgio Armani, Gucci, Loro Piana, Hogan, La Perla, Salvatore Ferragamo, Tod's, Sergio Rossi, Valentino and Yves Saint Laurent. All have older styles with high prices, however, you can always snag a good deal here and there.

THE MALL information desk opening hours are: from 9 to 18 non-stop Monday to Saturday
Tel +39 055 8657 775 Fax +39 055 8657 801

THE MALL address: Via Europa 8, 50060 Leccio, Reggello Firenze
Opening hours : from 10 to 19 non-stop Monday to Saturday and 15-19 on Sunday.
Please call ahead to check opening hours as they are subject to sudden changes.
How to get there: The mall provides a shuttle bus to collect clients from their hotels and take them to the out let. Seats may be reserved by calling THE MALL information desk.


Campanile di Giotto

view of florenceA friend of mine has recently reached the top of Campanile di Giotto, the bell tower near the Duomo of Florence. You can walk up the stairs (444 steps!) to see the wonderful panorama of Florence. It could be tiring to climb up the stairs since it's very narrow and dark, but it's worth it.

campanile giottoWork on Giotto's Campanile, regarded as the finest in Italy, started in 1334. After the artist's death in 1337, Andrea Pisano took over supervision and the campanile was completed by Francesco Talenti in 1359. The square bell tower, 84.70 metres high, is the finest example of Florentine Gothic architecture of the 14th century and its well-proportioned design combines vertical movement with horizontal firmness. It has angular supports reaching up to the horizontal projecting cornice and is completely covered with bands of green, white and pink inlay.

Piazza del Duomo - Firenze
Opening hours: winter 9.00 a.m- 4.20 p.m; Summer 9.00 a.m- 6.50 p.m
Price: 6,00 €
the pictures are of my friend Baba, you can read her post (in italian) here

Easter in Florence: the explosion of the Cart

Easter is coming.. Florence is warm and full of the colors and smells of Spring. In these days temperature has reached 24° and sun is over the city.

There are several tradition in Florence, for Easter holidays.
The main important event is "the scoppio del carro" (=the explosion of the Cart).

The Explosion of the Cart on Easter is one of the oldest traditions in Florentine culture.
The ceremony goes back to the First Crusade, which was called to liberate the Holy Sepulcher from the hands of the infidels. In 1097, under the command of Goffredo di Buglione, the crusaders departed for Palestine and in the summer of 1099 laid siege to and sacked Jerusalem. According to tradition, it was the Florentine Pazzino de’ Pazzi to scale the walls of the Holy City first. For this act of courage, Goffredo di Buglione gave him three shards of the Holy Sepulcher; when he returned to Florence, he donated them to the city in a grand celebration, and they are now preserved in the church of the Holy Apostles.
Historians tell us that after the liberation of Jerusalem, on the day of Holy Saturday, the crusaders gathered in the Church of the Resurrection and gave everyone present holy fire, the symbol of purification. This ceremony was the origin of the Easter tradition of giving out holy fire to the Florentine people. With the passing of time the planning of the festival became increasingly articulated, to the point that the use of a cart to transport the holy fire was introduced, with a tripod full of burning coal.
Today the cart of Easter fire, pulled by oxen and escorted by 150 soldiers, musicians, and flag-bearers of historic soccer, starts from Piazzale del Prato and arrives in Piazza del Duomo. At this point a metal wire unites the cart to the top of a wood column placed in the center of the choir. In the meantime, a procession begins from the church of the Holy Apostles led by the Gonfalone of Florence and flag-bearers of the Pazzi family, with priests and city officials. At 11.00, to the sounds of “Gloria in excelsis Deo,” the fuse of a rocket is lit and it flies, whistling, to set on fire the fireworks in the cart. According to tradition, if the flight of the rocket is perfect, it will be a positive year for Florence.


Jazz music in Florence

If you like live music.. jazz music.. there's a little club in the center of Florence, where you can find good music and a nice atmosphere. It's not easy to find it, if you don't know where it is, since it lies in a very narrow "vicolo" (=street) of Florence. Not far from the Duomo, nor from santa Croce. To enter you have to pay a fee for a club card. But it costs only 5 euros..

PROGRAM 1st-30th of April 2007
Concerts start at 10.15 pm – members only
Promotion: member card valid till 31st of December for only 5 euros

Tuesday 3rd JAM SESSION BLUES + HOUSE BAND The Jam Session today has the colours of blues: it will start with STAY FREE BAND, led by one of the most important musician in Tuscany blues. Roberto Uggiosi: guitar and voice; Marco Polidori: bass; Luca Solini: drums..

Wednesday 4th SOUNDGOSPELTRAIN directed by Monica Masini with a rhythmic section's accompaniment. Made up by the best singers of the various sing and vocal technique classes of the school of music "SOUND", like the soloist Caterina Berti and Sabrina Galeotti, the group plays different kinds of songs, from Renaissance to Afro-American music, from gospel and spiritual to modern blues and jazz (with instrumental band).
Thursday 5th LUIZ LIMA Br-4. Luiz Lima: guitars; Claudio Carboni: saxs; Marco Cattarossi: bass; Ricardo Da Silva: percussions. Brazilian essential music, which joins tradition and contemporaneity, ethnic and jazz components; a new reading of Egberto Gismonti, Pixinguinha, Guinga, Paulo Bellinati and original songs of Luiz Lima, guitarist and composer born in the north-est of Brazil and moved to Italy in 1990. Precious arrangements and improvisation are the feature of this band.

Friday 6th Mc CHANTEE Bros in concert. Francesco Maccianti: piano; Paolo Maccianti: drums; Nicola Maccianti: saxs; Filippo Pedol: double bass; Filippo Lepri: trumpet and flug. An extraordinary quintet led by the famous pianist Francesco Maccianti playing latin jazz: original songs and re-elaborations of Henderson, Walton, Hubbard, Morgan etc.

Saturday 7th Cban music with PERFIDIA QUARTET. Francesco Birardi and Gianni Biondi: guitars and voice; Paolo Casu: congas, darbouka, percussions; “Sandrito” Garbey: trumpet. The band, whose name comes from a very famous 30s' bolero, works to restore the intense and full of pathos atmosphere of bolero, son and latino american music, especially of the traditional cuban music, from Compay Segundo to Buenavista Social Club.

Tuesday 10th JAM SESSION + HOUSE BAND. Tonight the most classical jazz with the house band. William Tatge: piano; Piero Spitilli: double bass; Bernardo Guerra: drums. But Jam Session is free and open to any kind of jazz…
Wednesday 11th METROPOLIS JAZZ QUINTET. Denise Lembo: voice; Marco Zini: tenor sax; Umberto Quattrone: guitar; Alessandro Berti: double bass; Enzo Marino: drums. Standard jazz, Italian and American evergreen songs, with a lot of space free for improvisation.

Thursday 12th Pizzica & Taranta Party” with TWO PISCES IN ALTOMARE. Gianfranco Narracci: voice and percussions; Enzo Mileo: guitar; Luca Imperatore: guitar; Massimo Ierimonti: percussions. Mediterranean folk.

Friday 13th SOUND POWER FUNK. Andrea Coppini: sax; Franco Baggiani: trumpet; Emanuele Fontana: piano and keyboards; Marco Cattarossi: bass; Cosimo Marchese: drums. An extraordinary explosive band with teachers of the music school “Sound” of Florence, led by Andrea Coppini, who plays rock songs arranged in funky style.
Saturday 14th SIX DIXIERS. Alberto Guerrini: clarinet; Mirko Rabitti: trumpet; Nerio Bianchi: trombone; Enzo Bonfiglio: banjo; Francesco Lorenzini: bass; Giole Camellini: drums. The band plays both classical dixieland songs of 20s and 30s and songs of the smaller bands playing in those years. In the repertory songs like Sweet Georgia Brown , All of Me , Basin Street Blues , Fire chief Rag , and Italian songs like Pippo Pippo , Mille lire al mese , etc.

Tuesday 17th JAM SESSION + HOUSE BAND. Tonight jazz-funk, with the House Band made up of Francesco Cherubini: drums; Leonardo Volo: piano, Milko Ambrogini: bass. But Jam Session is free and open to any kind of jazz…

Wednesday 18th ALBERTO FERRARESE QUINTET. Alberto Ferrarese: voice; Maurizio Forti: sint guitar; Damiano Niccolini: sax; Lorenzo Forti: bass; Piero Barbetti: drums. From his huge repertory, that he plays with ability and warmth, Alberto Ferrarese, one of the most important jazz singer in Florence, presents an anthology which goes from 30s to 60s.

Thursday 19th SUNRISE JAZZ ORCHESTRA conducted by Stefano Rapicavoli. One of the first jazz orchestra in Tuscany, born in 1994, which already played with big artists as Ed Neumeister, Marco Tamburini, Stefano “Cocco” Cantini, Gianluigi Trovesi, Pietro Tonolo, Rudy Migliardi, Stefano Bollani, Roy Paci. From 2002 also the extraordinary Canadian singer Maria Loscrebo is part of the orchestra.

Friday 20th ALEX GONFIANTINI BLUES BAND. Alex Gonfiantini: voice and guitar; Carlo Bonamico: bass; Antonio Masoni: keyboards; Cosimo Marchese: drums. An only nineteen years old talent makes his debut at Jazz Club. When he was only sixteen he was on the stage of Pistoia Blues, at 17 he opend the second night at Turrita blues, at eighteen he played at Bordighera Jazz & Blues. Keep an eye on him!
Saturday 21st From 21 p.m. Fiesta española with GIGI CARDIGLIANO GROUP. Gigi Cardigliano: guitar, voice; Domingo: guitar; Gaia and Daniela: flamenco dance. Flamenco, paella and sangria.

Tuesday 24th JAM SESSION + HOUSE BAND. Tonigh latin jazz, with the House Band with Marco Pezzola: piano; Carlo Bonamico: bass; Pepe Bonanno: drums. But Jam Session is free and open to any kind of jazz…

Wednesday 25th BARBUTO in “Sabor particular”. Pablo Marini: guitar; Francesco Notarbartolo: bass; Lorenzo Nardi : drums; Lisandro Cancellieri: congas, bongos. A repertory of Caribbean music, mostly Cuban music: from the classics of son, rumba and bolero by Compay Segundo, Arsenio Rodriguez, Perez Prado to the songs of more recent authors as Poncho Sanchez and Marc Ribot, all under the influence of blues, funk and rock, to obtain a really particular and sweeping sound.

Friday 27th MICHELA LOMBARDI + SANTARNECCHI – VERNUCCIO -MARCHESE TRIO. Michela Lombardi: voice; Franco Santarnecchi: piano; Nicola Vernuccio: double bass; Cosimo Marchese: drums. One of the best young singer in Italian jazz, with very good vocal qualities and expressive intensity.

Saturday 28th "COAT AND CAMEL". Leonardo Boni and Roberto Uggiosi: guitars and voices. With their mostly acoustic repertory across cotton plantations, railways and shanty towns of the south of the USA, beginning with 20s. A new ironic reading of ragtime and blues-swing songs by artists as Sam Chatmon, Sonny Terry, Browie McGee etc.; all the love for this kind of music in their version of more recent authors' songs, such as John Fogarty and Lennon-McCartney.

Infoline and reservations: Vincenzo Ricchi, 3316477097; after 9 pm, 0552479700
Via Nuova de’ Caccini, 3 - Firenze
tel. 055-2479700 / 331 6477097
open from 9 pm to late night, concerts from Tuesday to Saturday – closed on Sunday and Monday every Tuesday JAM SESSION + HOUSE BAND


Dark chocolate...che passione!

Yesterday I visited a lovely place.. a workshop where delicious chocolate cakes are made every day! The rich fragrance of chocolate pervades every room. The owner and creator Claudio Pistocchi welcomes you with a smile introducing you in his world of chocolate (when he's not around the world for conferences and events).

The "torta Pistocchi" is very famous here in Florence. Made by hand since the very beginning, the Pistocchi torta contains no sugar, eggs, butter or flour. There are no preservatives, vegetable oils, or GMO’s: only the finest quality dark chocolate, bitter cocoa powder and a small amount of cream.
The Pistocchi Family has been producing this pure dark chocolate cake for over 18 years now. The cakes are hand-made, one by one, left to cool and then vacuum-sealed for freshness.

There are 5 different variations of the cakes:

The Classic:
This is the original that has made these cakes so popular among chocolate-lovers. Its rich and persistent flavor is the result of carefully blending select chocolate varieties. It’s a wonderful, velvety chocolate meant to be enjoyed, like all of their cakes, at room temperature.

Chili Pepper:
This was the first variation of the original Classic, obtained by simply adding chili pepper during the mixing process. At first all there is, is the intense flavor of the chocolate; it’s only towards the end that your mouth will start to tingle with the pleasant heat of the chili pepper, creating an irresistible combination of sensations. This version of this pure chocolate cake is so successful because the heat is just enough, and not too much. Interesting pairings include ginger snaps or red onion jelly.

Black Cherry:
In this variation, created in the fall of 2004, 30% whole candied black cherries are added to the original chocolate blend. A veritable explosion of flavor and freshness, the delicate balance between tart, bitter and, sweet sensations makes this, their favorite version. Originally produced as a limited release, it was so successful that it is now part of the standard production.

Sicilian Citrus:
This addition to the collection, presented at the International Wine Festival of Meran in 2005, is already a best seller. It’s in the village of Noto, Sicily, that Corrado Assenza, in his Caffè Sicilia workshop, creates the best candied citrus in all of Italy. The lemons and oranges of exceptional quality are handpicked when perfectly ripe and are candied using only sugar and painstaking care, giving us a chance to experience Sicily’s unforgettable aromas. The chocolate is gladly combined with petite portions of these candied rinds, taking on their wonderful flavors and enveloping them in a velvety and indulgent embrace. The best pairing for this version is with a high-quality limoncello.

The newest addition to the Pistocchi family, a coffee-infused version was presented for the first time at the Slow Food Salone del Gusto in Turin 2006 and instantly became a favorite among chocolate and coffee lovers. They use only pure Ethiopian Arabica coffee (Sidamo produced by Piantigioni del Caffè) whose sweet and persistent flavor is characteristically nuanced with citrus and floral notes. Their traditional, select blend of chocolate is combined with this very finely ground coffee leaving your mouth full of flavor and with a finish that lasts over ten minutes. They suggest pairing it with a good, strong coffee brew.

You can taste it and buy it in the brand new facility located in Via Ponte di Mezzo No. 22, Florence, which has a spacious visitor’s parking area: new location, same great atmosphere. this is the website: www.tortapistocchi.it


Taste in Florence

From 17 to 19 March 2007 the Stazione Leopolda in Florence will be the setting for the second edition of TASTE. Intriguing foods, tempting tastes, debates and events: TASTE is the new workshop on tastes and ideas, an original gastronautic voyage devoted to discovering the cultural and biological diversities of foods.

This second edition of TASTE is being produced and promoted by Pitti Immagine.
Brainchild of Davide Paolini – “gastronaut”, writer, journalist, author of several publications and radio talk-show host, Taste is a fair, a free-wheeling tour of tasting sessions, a place for pure cultural-gastronomic debates. It is an observatory with lenses focused on contemporary developments in tastes that can recognize and pinpoint the changes in our global society.
OVER 130 EXHIBITORS selected as gastronautical models producers of excellence from all over Italy representing the entire industry will be participating in the fair: from aged buffalo milk cheeses to chocolates made with the world’s finest cocoa, from exquisite tuna salami to jams flavored with balsamic vinegar to the finest autochthonous and biodynamic wines – with special attention to the most specialized firms.
A meeting point for members of the trade from all over the world, TASTE targets distributors, the hospitality and food services industry – restaurants, wine shops, hotels, banqueting facilities and caterers – as well as the huge audience that simply loves to eat well and is always on the lookout for genuine, quality flavors.

In a striking setting designed by architect Alessandro Moradei, TASTE draws a map for a voyage of discovery to seek old and new treasures in the worlds of gastronomy and wellness, a voyage with four stops:

- TASTE TOUR: an area where the exhibitors present their products for viewing and tasting and provide firsthand information about each of their specialties;
- TASTE TOOLS: the utensils, items and equipment for the kitchen and nutritional wisdom, between food & kitchen design;
- TASTE SHOP: a shopping area where you can buy everything that you see and taste during the tour;
- TASTE PRESS: the world’s best wine, food and lifestyle magazines;
- TASTE RING: a full calendar of events covering the three days of the fair, organized by the “Gastronaut” featuring the leading names in wines and foods, to stimulate though on the topics of taste and quality foods. The topics for this edition: “Should restaurants offer children’s menus?”, “Olive oil between swindles and bickering: what happened to Italian olive oil?, “Sawdust and artificial flavors: when wine is “retouched” to please the market.”

This edition’s exhibition will reveal amazing attention to detail: with a signature collection of uniforms for the Taste staff by GANDINI FOODWEAR. In a dedicated area of the fair Gandini Foodwear will present a new, essential and contemporary concept in elegance created for professional use only – in the finest hotels and restaurants – for presenting and serving foods in the manner becoming to them.

Where: Stazione Leopolda Firenze
When: from the 17th to the 19th of March

Opening Time
Saturday March 17th, from 11 a.m. to 11 p.m.
Sunday March 18th, from 11. a.m. to 11 p.m.
Monday March 19th, from 11 a.m. to 7 p.m.

How to reach Taste

Santa Maria Novella railway station, about 1km far from the fair: 5 minutes by taxi, 10 minutes by bus line 1 and 9 (leaving on Via della Scala)

Higway A11 (Firenze-mare): way out Firenze Nord.
Higway A1 (arriving form Milano/Bologna or Napoli/Roma): way out Firenze Nord
keep going on viale Guidoni and viale Redi following the indications for the city center, in direction of Porta al Prato.

line 1-9-12-16-17-26-27-80, bus stop: Porta al Prato.


16mm film festival

Friday I went to the 16mm Film Festival. A friend of mine was presenting a movie..

The 16mm film festival is the first Film Festival dedicated to 16 /Super 8 mm black and white films. The goal of the festival is to promote black and white film; a cinema that opposes digital technology. "A technology too accessible to everyone."

This is the program of friday, the 9th.

Sezione Music Film/Music film
Ursula Ferrara
Keith Stevenson
David Bickley
Vadim Ehrlich
Alex Rogalski
Michael Spooner
Ruggero Mantovani
Phil Mucci
Pete Koff


Cezanne in Florence

The exhibition Cézanne in Florence has gathered together for the first time the most noteworthy works of the Fabbri’s and Loeser’s collections that, before being scattered in the years between the two world wars, were the most important in the world.

Totally contrary to the aesthetic tastes of the time, and even to the surprise of the artist himself, Fabbri actually came to own 32 paintings by Cézanne while Loeser 15. These collections contributed to making Cézanne appreciated by the international community and encouraged the artistic milieu of Florence towards avant-garde trends.

The exhibition is housed on the piano nobile of Palazzo Strozzi.

Full price € 10

Reduced € 8.50
Seniors 65+, organized groups of at least 15 people, members of categories that have a special arrangement, young people 7 - 18 years old, university students, the disabled, residents of Florence
Reduced € 8
Family discount (two adults with at least one child under age), holders of CartaSi, holders of tickets to a show held in Firenze dei Teatri theatres or of Maggio Musicale tickets

Children up to 6 years of age, people escorting the disabled, group leaders, journalists with a press card, Florence tourist guides



Opening hours : every day from 7.30pm – Sunday 3.00pm
Happenings & Concerts each night from 8.30pm

IRISH FESTIVAL 2007 colours & flavours from Ireland – 12th Edition

SAINT PATRICK day on the Arno river…
From March 13th to Sunday March 18th, 2007 The 12th edition of the Irish festival will take place at the Saschall, the annual kermes fully dedicated to the sounds the flavours and the culture of Ireland.
Each night , 5 hours of live music, popular dancing, games, Irish food tasting and performances.
Many special guests will be on the stage : to mark out the return of Modena City Ramblers, the most Irish within the Italian bands, for 2 consecutives days, Tuesday March 13th and Wednesday March 14th.
Double appointment for the Whishy Trail band , the historical band who from 25years ! navigates on the ethereal atmosphere of the celtic music and in general on the tradition of the popular music.
During the 2 night’s concert at Saschall on March 15th and on march 17th , the Whisky Trail will record the new live DVD sharing the stage with most of the ILLUSTRIOUS NAMES OF THE INTERNATIONAL FOLK.

PARTICULAR EVENING THAT ONE OF SATURDAY 17: ALL OVER THE WORLD and at Saschall we celebrate the Saint Patrick day! SAINT Patrick of Ireland who had italian origins ( as per Irish people loved to remind ! )

The world wide known accordionist Alan Kelly as Special Guests of the Irish Festival will be on the stage of Saschall on Friday , March 16th with his band.
And again with Les Irlandiis, Cisalpipers, Fimm, Drunk Butchers, Shamrock, Morrigan’s Wake and the coloured ensemble Cliffs of Moher, which will cheers us with their repertory of popular dances.
The much particular frame of the kermesse, is the gorgeus stage setting which will transform the saschall in a green angle of Ireland for 6 days.
Exbition / Market of Irish handicrafts , clothes , records and books available for all the duration of the festival
Gastronomic specialities such as Culcannon, turrip and bacon soup, Dublin coddle. Irish stew can’t be missing !
And the mythical beers, of course !!!


Io amo Firenze English version

1 year ago I started my blog on Florence, Italy: Firenze night&day
In these 12 months many things have happened. Much people have written to me, many have commented. Some of them are now friends.

Now is the moment to create one English version for my friends: people from USA, from Great Britain, from Ireland, from Japan..

If some mother tongue finds some error please excuse me!
Indeed write me and I will correct...

I hope you will appreciate my city as I live it..

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