• Boboli Gardens - Tuscan Countryside - Florence, Italy

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IMG_0509On April 9th the 18th edition of Musica Sacra a Firenze started with Le Sette Ultime Parole di Cristo (The Last Seven Words of Christ) a concert by the Camerata Strumentale di Citta’ di Prato. They played Hayden, with a narrator, Fabrizio Gifuni reading the appropriate scripture

Anytime there is a concert in one of these beautiful old churches, it’s a treat to be there. The orchestral music rising into the domes and arches is incredible spiritual whatever your religious proclivities may be.
These concerts are free and represent a variety of composers and orchestras. You can make a reservation at +39 055 2302885, but if you don’t get an opportunity to do so, there are usually some remaining seats that they will seat about 15 minutes prior to the start of the concert. Us the South side entrance to the Duomo. The program runs until October. Upcoming concerts are:

May 9 8:30 Maratona Organistica-vigilia della Festa di San Zanobi-Bach, Franck, Prokofiev
May 22 9:15 Concerto al Grande Organo Mascioni-Bach, Mendelssohn, Franck
June 12 9:15 Musica Sacra a Firenze Fra Sette Novecento-Coro del Maggio Musicale Fiorentino
July 3 9:30 San Ignacio una festa nelle Missioni Gesuitiche del Paraguay-Ensemble Elyma
Sept 8 9:15 Festa della Nativita’ di Maria-Meraviglia delle Trombe Barocche
Oct 3 9:15 Vigilia della festa di San Francesco-Coro, Orchestra, and soloist della Cappella Musicale

Find out more information at www.operaduomo.firenze.it

Lo Scudo is still one of my favorite Pizzeria’s in Florence. Located very near the Duomo, it is not only a pizzeria but a full service restaurant, and unlike many places in Florence it is opened all day long. When you are site seeing, it is sometimes difficult to work your museum and sightseeing schedule around restaurant schedules. Most restaurants are only opened from 12-3 and then close until 7 when they open again for dinner.IMG_0503IMG_0493
Lo Scudo is located at the corner of via Proconsolo and via dell’ Oriuolo, 53. I love their pizza, but often have other things here. They also have a good fish menu which is difficult to find in Florence. The house wine is excellent so order a carafe!IMG_0499IMG_0500
My pizza choices vary here, but this photo is Rucola and Grana and Ben had the Tuna and Onion, but sprinkled a little arugula on top as well. The crust is thin, just like I like it and they have a wood fired oven…a must for excellent pizza!IMG_0501
The service here is good and the atmosphere is cozy. When you need something reasonable in the city center and you want good food, try Lo Scudo. I think you will be happy!IMG_0502

Forno Becagli
Forno Becagli located at Borgo Ognissanti, 92 certainly has products that are staples in my home. This very tiny store is always busy with a line out the door. Don’t be discouraged though, they are efficient and the store only holds about 3 people at one time.
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The window is filled with baked goods such as Ramerino and Cheesecakes, and inside there are foccacia breads, loaves of ciabatta, and multi cereal loaves of dark brown. The schiacciata is said to be one of the best in town, and I will testify to that!
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I also love the stuffed schiacciata with stracchino and rucola….Yum, yum. The store is opened from 6:30-8 every day except Sunday. At 4 p.m. each day you can get hot ciambella (doughnuts)! This bakery is just below my apartment and the aromas that rise from it are enough to make me gain weight! If you live in the area, you already know about it. If you don’t, it’s worth a special trip.
The bakery also has other staple goods like milk, eggs, pasta and some sauces.