Hundreds of years of history combined with innovative cuisine and a dash of sophistication await you at the Fishing Lab in Florence, Italy. From your choice of raw fish, specialty cooking, and street food, or a combination of all three, paired with an impressive wine list you may have a hard time deciding what to eat at this amazing Italian restaurant.
The Ancient Building
Fishing Lab Alle Murate is more than a fantastic restaurant. From the 13th to mid-16th centuries the palazzo was a host to the Judges and Notaries Guild. Originally thought to be a part of the Middle Ages, excavations of the lower level unearthed an archaeological site to first-century Florenita Romana, where a wool dyeing room was discovered. The careful renovation took place to strategically conserve the history of the building, the archaeological site, and enhance the precious artwork on the walls and ceiling.
The nautical atmosphere in the Fishing Lab is palpable. The visible kitchens offer dishes with fresh ingredients and specially selected raw materials. Whether you are sitting at a table or standing up, genuine hospitality is outstanding throughout the overflowing best restaurant in Florence.
Fishing Lab Archaeological Site
The basement is separated from the ground floor by a late Mediaeval vault. In 2004 archaeological investigations were started here and are still in progress; these have already confirmed the dense historical stratification characterizing this place.
The area in which the palazzo stands is of great archaeological interest for the Middle Ages, the Roman, and late ancient eras.
The research will reserve essential discoveries about the history of the site, regarding the centuries before the headquarters of the Guild of Judges and Notaries were built here. The Pottery remains discovered confirm that the area had been inhabited since ancient times. The presence of a watercourse below the surface of the street, via del Proconsolo, has also been confirmed. The waterway supplied water for industrial structures such as the late Roman laundries and dryers and perhaps, in the Middle Ages, a cloth-making factory, right in this area.
In the basement room, you can see a piling system driven into the ground. For now, this discovery remains mysterious, and investigations are still underway to establish its dating and functions.
The Exceptional Menu
The menu at the Fishing Lab is clear-cut. Here you order what you want with no categories such as first, starters, mains, etc. The fish counter offers an attractive display of options available: bass and gilthead bream, giant red shrimps, salmon, scampi, shrimps, sliced tuna, tartare, and wild concave oysters. If you are unsure what you want, your server can decide for you with a tasting menu for four people. Savor and taste multiple flavors with several dishes and cooking options available.
Enjoy a dish from their “special cooking methods.” These are smoked or grilled in a wooden walnut paper in the wood oven.
The Fishing Lab brings classic street food to a new height. The style and taste of the dishes are impeccable. Here you can try fried anchovies, rockfish nuggets, tuna buns, sea eel rolls, and the best chips I have ever eaten.
For those who want to eat some traditional Italian dishes, they have some great classics. Try Fettunta with black cabbage and octopus. The cuttlefish sautéed with green sauce is served with mashed potatoes. Spaghetti Alla Chitarra is fresh pasta with salmon and lemongrass. If you are not a fish lover, the restaurant also offers some non-fish dishes.
Fishing Lab has partnered with the best-known pastry shops in the area to give guests an excellent finish to a fabulous meal. Gelato, sorbet, tiramisu, and a selection of cakes will have you end your meal with an incredible dessert.
A considerable amount of time has been spent on the wine list to match it with every item on the menu. Almost all the wines on the list are available by the glass. For the guests who are not wine fans, the Fishing Lab has a selection of craft beers perfectly paired with fish.
One of My Favorite Florence Restaurants
The atmosphere within the Fishing Lab is exceptional with the historical preservation of the building makes it one of the best Italian restaurants. The service and knowledge of the staff members are perfect. Thus, in combination with the best Italian food and wine, it makes the Fishing Lab one of my favorite restaurants in Florence, Italy. If you are unable to get a reservation at the restaurant when your there, be sure to get something for takeaway. The Fishing Lab is not a restaurant you want to miss.
Reservations recommended – A must