A delightful detour if one is taking the route from Altopascio to Empoli across the Arno valley on the way to Florence is to cut across to Ponte a Cappiano, a major engineering work carried out by Cosimo de Medici and replacing an older bridge on the pilgrims route known as the via francigena and once protected by the knights hospitaliers of Altopascio. I have described this area more fully in my post at https://longoio2.wordpress.com/2014/10/09/the-biggest-wetland-in-italy/
I’ll just add here that if one parks one’s vehicle in the main square of this truly laid back town and walks round to the right one comes across an excellent osteria appropiately called ‘numero uno’.
We ate well and cheaply there with excellent pasta first courses and brilliantly cooked manzo and involtini for seconds accompanied by some of the best mashed potatoes I have tasted.
The osteria’s facebook page is at https://m.facebook.com/osterianumero1fucecchio/?locale2=it_IT
Booking is essential. We didn’t book but were lucky as the osteria filled up quite quickly. Helpings were generous and some of what we couldn’t eat was packed away for us by the friendly proprietors and served for our supper too!
Ponte a Cappiano was a truly welcome break on our journey towards the capital of the Grand Duchy during yesterday’s brilliant spring day.