by Melinda Gallo

Fiera del cioccolato artigianale

For the first time since we've been here, we finally made it to the annual Fiera del cioccolato artigianale. It's always held down the Arno river toward Firenze Sud, so it's not convenient for people like us who have no car, so we haven't been that motivated to go in the past. Two of our friends wanted to meet us there this afternoon, so we finally had firm plans to go.

Living in Florence :: Fiera del cioccolato artigianale

Dave and I hopped in a taxi at Piazza San Marco and told the tassista (taxi driver) that we wanted to go to Teatro Saschall. The tassista corrected me by putting the accent on the end of the word, so it sounded more like "Sasch Hall."

We met up with our friends who were standing outside and walked back to buy tickets. We paid our 9 Euros each and we received a few buoni (coupons) to taste chocolate from any of the numerous stands inside.

We fought our way through the crowds of people to see what each of the stands was selling. Each time we saw a stand with something interesting to taste, we'd hand them our buono and they'd ask us what we'd want and then hand it to us. My favorite was chocolate ganache flavored with iris, but the woman didn't ask for my buono. Because there are no preservatives in it, I asked her where I could get some for Easter. She handed me her cell phone number and I could order it.

A few of the vendors that I liked have shops downtown while some of them are in Tuscany, but have no reseller downtown. It's a little disappointing because I was obliged to buy more because I know I won't be able to restock any time soon. I'm hoping that some of them will eventually sell their products downtown because their chocolate was tasty.

After having lived in France for many years, I have been exposed to chocolates from Bernachon when I lived in Lyon and La Maison du Chocolat when I was in Paris. My taste for chocolate has changed and I'm unable to just enjoy any old piece of chocolate. So, the fiera (fair) was nice because I was able to taste some incredible chocolates.

The Fiera del cioccolato artiginale is open until next Sunday. Even though it's rather small, it was quite interesting to visit and who can say no to a delicious piece of chocolate?

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