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The most famous steak in Italy, bistecca alla Fiorentina is a very thick steak (up to 3 inches thick) with the bone still attached using well-aged Chianina beef from Arezzo’s Val di Chiana. Brought to room temperature, it is seared at high heat and grilled for a few minutes on each side with salt and cracked pepper. The best (hard to find, even in Florence) are so juicy and tender that you’ll scarcely need your knife.

Other common steaks are bistecca in intingolo in a savoury sauce, bistecche intriganti coated in grated mushrooms and truffles, breadcrumbs and cheese, then grilled and bistecca alla pizzaiola, a steak cooked with olive oil, garlic, pepper flakes and tomatoes.

Bistecche alla valdostana from the Valle d'Aosta are breaded and deep fried, then topped with ham and Fontina and baked until the cheese melts

A bistecchiera is a stove top grill.

You may also see a bistecca or bistecchina di pollo for chicken breast, although petto di pollo is more common.

In June, Sestino in Arezzo province hosts a Sagra della Bistecca Chianina, concluding with an exciting palio.

Food Festivals

Meats & Poultry


Valle d'Aosta

Text © Dana Facaros & Michael Pauls

Image by McPig