Food tour in Prato: from the city centre to the countryside

Here are a few places where you should stop for a bite to eat and to pick up some delicious souvenirs

A few km from Florence you find the multiethnic city of Prato and its beautiful countryside. It's a highly diversified area that offers historical attractions such as an Etruscan path, Medici villas and contemporary art. 

Prato is also famous for its textile industry and its fine food and wine. Once in Prato, take the road to the beloved Medici countryside and explore Carmignano, Poggio a Caiano and Artimino.

This itinerary can be downloaded here (pdf)

Prato biscuits

The first reference to this biscuit is found in an 18th-century Prato manuscript, and they have been produced by Antonio Mattei’s historical bakery since 1858. The ingredients of famous Prato biscotti are only flour, sugar, eggs, almonds and pine nuts, and no rising agent, butter, oil or milk is used. 

Biscottificio Mattei [Photo credits: Visit Prato]
Biscottificio Mattei [Photo credits: Visit Prato]

 

Mortadella from Prato

This special mortadella has been made in Prato since the sixteenth century. What makes it different is that it is made with special spices and a liqueur called Alchermes. This mortadella should be eaten warm or cold, sliced or cubed, and it goes perfectly with liver paté crostini and all the other classic Tuscan starters. Check out this list of Mortadella di Prato producers

Hills of Artimino [Photo credits: Visit Prato]
Hills of Artimino [Photo credits: Visit Prato]
Carmignano figs

Carmignano figs are famous across the country for their taste and their ancestral and natural drying technique. Dried figs from Carmignano are perfect with mortadella from Prato, but you can also have them as a light dessert. Check out here a list with all the Carmignano figs producers.

Dried figs from Carmignano [Photo credits: Associazione Produttori Fico Secco di Carmignano]
Dried figs from Carmignano [Photo credits: Associazione Produttori Fico Secco di Carmignano]

 

Carmignano DOCG red wine

Wine has been produced in the Prato countryside since Roman times. In 1716, Carmignano was chosen by Grand Duke Cosimo III to be one of only four areas dedicated to wine production. The award of the prestigious “Motu Proprio decree” and famous Florentine “contract” imposed precise rules and regulations governing production and geographical restriction on trade. This contract made Carmignano the first “DOC” in the world. The presence of Cabernet Sauvignon or Cabernet Franc in the wine is what makes the great reds of Carmignano exquisitely unique. Today, Carmignano is one of the top 11 DOCG wines in Tuscany. Check out here the list of Carmignano DOCG wine producers.

Traditional dishes

Prato's cuisine is a simple one, based on traditions deriving from humble dishes. Among the most famous dishes, try stuffed celery (stalks of celery stuffed with ground beef and mortadella), Peaches (a local dessert made with flour, butter, eggs and sugar) and the Mantovana white cake.

Best restaurants in Prato - Search on Vetrina Toscana web portal

Cover image credit: magro_kr

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Food and Wine