Thursday 5 November 2020

The options are endless: a small hamburgeria in a village, gourmet inspired joints in larger cities, female-run only, or the one where you can taste solely local raw materials. You can choose between zebra, ostrich, or kobe meat, weighing up to the one kilo maxi-burger for the biggest of appetites. “TuscanBurger” (ed. Il Forchettiere, 250 pages) by Marco Gemelli and Lorenzo Gagliano is a journey into the world of the made-in-Tuscany hamburger, a dish now considered a street food icon.

This is not simply a guide that reviews the best 50 places to enjoy a quality hamburger, it’s a project that offers a 360° overview of everything that revolves around “that microcosm separated by two slices of bread”. In a story that oscillates between the buildings in the center of Florence to the lesser known corners of the region, it holds firm to an inspiring principle, namely that even Tuscan burgers have their own majesty.

The authors explain, “The Granducato has everything you need for a great hamburger that places it in an equal footing with burgers from elsewhere. First of all, meat from Chianina and other native cattle breeds, including cinta senese DOP or wild boar. Added to that, Pecorino Toscano Dop and all its standard dressings like Certaldo onions or Colonnata Igp lard. Then we also produce truffles, vegetables and spices that are some of the best in the world. Thanks to the men and women who continue to keep the tradition alive with their passion, each layer of a burger made in a ‘Tuscan way’ tells one, ten, a thousand stories of excellence”.

The preface was written by Luisanna Messeri and the volume is supported by Vetrina Toscana,  the Tuscan Regional Council and Unioncamere Toscana that promote quality restaurants, shops and products that express the identity of the territory and enhance the food and wine culture as a tourist attraction. In the pages of “TuscanBurger”, there’s no shortage of entrepreneurial tales of small and large companies made in Tuscany who provide the raw materials that make up the burger, as well as interviews with the characters linked to this world, ideal combinations with wine, beer, bubbles and cocktails, curiosities about extravagant burgers, and more. A space in the volume is also dedicated to restaurants that show particular attention to this dish, as well as to the “author’s pairing”, that is the gourmet interpretations by 30 of the most popular Tuscan chefs, both those starred and not.

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