When you live in Florence, it is impossible not to know Fabio Picchi. He is the genius behind Cibrèo ristorante, Cibrèo trattoria, Caffè Cibrèo and Il Teatro del Sale. His four eateries are housed on opposite corners of the Sant’Ambrogio food market. It’s where Fabio created his own world of simple Italian cuisine. Four different settings each with their own identity, but united by the mind and taste of Picchi.
I’ve wanted to photograph Caffè Cibrèo for quite some time. It’s a poetic place: carved wood paneling, elegant bistro style mirrors, red velvet theater chairs, a retro bar and fresh flowers on the tables. A constant liveliness of people going in and out. The Caffè invites you to enjoy and feel good at any time of the day.
Then there is Picchi’s food: delicious, unpretentious, comforting. It’s the kind of food you wish your [grand]mother would make. At the Caffè, the plates are accompanied by ‘La Teoria’ di Fabio: ‘gelatina di pomodoro’ eaten without bread and only a fork, ‘crema di mandorle’ with small pieces of organic bread and the ‘prosciutto della famiglia’ only with your hands. Don’t worry, Fabio gives you the instructions before you start.
On the terrace; the right mix of locals and visitors enjoying their Tuscan fare. At my table I enjoy some of my favorites: the ‘sformatino di ricotta’ accompanied by homemade chicken liver pâté. The main is an aromatic stuffed rabbit. I finish with a fruity raspberry ‘crostata’ [tart] and a caffe at the bar. At the end, I have a special feeling; it’s experiencing something new without the shock. It’s fresh but comforting. Fabio Picchi is creating that magic every day.