If you are travelling to Florence in winter, the weather might not always be nice enough to sip wine outdoors. Below I have listed some cosy venues across town to enjoy a Spritz or other drinks. Many of these venues also have daily aperitivo, which a great alternative for dinner, especially if you’re travelling on a budget.
Winter in Florence is very enjoyable. There are fewer tourists so it’s a good time to visit many of the museums and other sites. For example, you can climb up Giotto’s Bell Tower and Brunelleschi’s Dome without queues. The perfect place to enjoy the sunset before heading for that drink!
1 Drogheria Bar & Grill
A perfect place to escape the rain in the early evening. They have cosy seating, great Aperol or Campari Spritz, a whole menu of spicy cocktails and an excellent Chardonnay!
If you are feeling lazy, why not stay for dinner. Enjoy one of their huge salads or burgers. They have recently added more vegan, vegetarian and fish options to their heavily meaty menu. Be sure to ask for thick chips instead of crisps.
Tip: Have a walk through the antique market right opposite the restaurant. It is covered from the rain and open every day expect Sunday.
Open daily from 10:00 – 02:00
Drogheria Bar & Grill, Piazza Pietro Annigoni 22
2 Café 1926 Bistrot
This is a must visit for rum lovers. Café 1926 has a huge selection of rums and rum cocktails. They even host rum tastings at times. The atmosphere is chilled and the seating areas are cosy. Walk around the venue and admire all the rum bottles. Live music from Thursday to Saturday. Why not treat yourself a chocolate fondue?!
Mon 07:00 – 22:00, Tue-Wed 07:00 – 23:30, Thu-Fri 07:00 – midnight, Sat 08:00 – 01:00
Café 1926 Bistrot, Via Giovan Battista Niccolini 30R
3 La Ménagere
Luckily, during winter this beautiful venue tends to be less crowded and you are likely to be able to grab a seat in the sofa area. They have some cocktails on the menu, but I mainly go there for the Negroni or a very dry rosé (yes, you can drink rosé all year round!). It’s a great place for people watching or just to admire the venue itself.
Tip: Head into the basement for live music every Tues, Thu–Sat. They have an especially good Beatles cover band on every Tuesday night.
Open daily from 07:30 – 02:00
La Ménagere, Via dei Ginori 8R
4 Ditta Artigianale
Ditta Artigianale is a perfect place to unwind during cold winter days. It’s also a good venue to visit if you need to do some work whilst in Florence. They are mainly focused on a range of coffees and gin, but they also have a decent selection of cocktails and wines available. The bar boasts around 150 gins (including local Peter in Florence Tuscan Gin) and 12 types of tonic. If you like their coffee, you are able to buy some to take home. Ditta on Via dello Sparone offers occasional events, such as live music and gin tastings.
Open daily 08:00 – 23:00
Ditta Neri, Via dei Neri 32r (better during the day)
Ditta Sparone, Via dello Sparone 5r (better in the evenings, but also good for working)
5 Atrium Bar at Four Seasons
This venue is beautiful and very comfortable. I guess you’d expect all the bells and whistles when you pay £20 for a cocktail with a selection of aperitivo snacks. If you need a pick-me-up, treat yourself to a cocktail or two at the Atrium Bar. Booking is recommended.
Tip: Ask for a Negroni from their special Negroni cart.
Open daily from 09:00 – 01:00
Atrium Bar, Borgo Pinti 99
6 Libreria Café la Cité
A library-style café and bar just across Ponte alla Carraia in San Frediano. A very relaxed venue. Their wine list focuses on organic wines with low sulphur levels. The venue hosts readings, screenings, live music and anything else art related.
Tip: Like live music? Across the street is a live music venue, La NoF. It’s open daily till late and the bands play mainly rock, but also the occasional blues, jazz, funk and electronic music.
Open daily from 15:00 till late
La Cité Libreria Café, Borgo San Frediano 20r
7 Mago Balducci
This small yet very popular aperitivo venue is one of the cosiest bars in Florence. Their spirit selection is small, but the choices are great. The aperitivo buffet is on all night from 6pm until around midnight. Make sure to book a table in the winter, unless you don’t mind sitting outside.
Open daily from midday till 15:00 & 18:00 till late
Mago Balducci, Via Marconi 24R
8 Mercato Centrale
Of course, I must mention the indoor food market in the San Lorenzo neighbourhood. It is the perfect place to go in winter. Sit at the wine bar and enjoy bruschetta or choose food from the many stalls. You simply find a table, order from whichever food stall you please, and someone will come and take your drink order from the main bar (the wine bar is separate, and you need to order directly at the bar).
Tip: The Negroni here is very good.
Open daily from 10:00 till midnight
Mercato Centrale, Piazza del Mercato Centrale 4
9 Christmas Market
Ok, this may not be the warmest choice, but who can resist a mug of mulled wine in the winter?! The German Christmas market is open from the 23rd November until 22nd December in Piazza Santa Croce.
Open daily from 10:00 – 22:00
10 Il Rifrullo
Il Rifrullo is one of the few venues in Florence with a fireplace. Located in the San Niccoló neighbourhood, it makes a good stopover before or after visiting Piazza Michelangelo. Il Rifrullo has cosy seating as well as tables by the windows perfect for people watching (they open the windows on a nice day). Also, if you happen to be in Florence during some winter sun, they have a lovely huge garden to enjoy those winter rays. They offer breakfast until midday and aperitivo from 19:00, as well as a Sunday brunch buffet between midday and 15:00.
Tip: Around the corner is the workshop of local street artist Clet Abraham, who creates the funky street signs you may have seen across the city. Pop in to have a look.
Open daily 07:30 – 01:30
Il Rifrullo, Via di San Niccoló, 55R