Yotam Ottolenghi, the Israeli chef and food writer, has been waxing lyrical in the Guardian about childhood trips to Tuscany to sample the food with his father, who was born in Florence.

As a boy, Yotam didn’t care so much about the architecture and history of Florence, but about the Florentine food – ice creams from the famous gelateria Perche No! salt-free white bread, which is particular to Tuscany, rich olive oils and other food specialities.

The Florentine breakfast is another fond memory: a selection of breads my father bought at the bakery down the street and put on the table with different spreadables – fresh butter, anchovy paste, apricot jam, chocolate spread – as well as prosciutto crudo. My two favourites were a salt-free white loaf, so particular to Tuscany, and sticky grape schiacciata. This trip reminded me how well peppery olive oil works with the mild bread.

For food and wine travel, Florence and Tuscany are hard to beat. You can sit in a little osteria or a grand Michelin-starred restaurant and either way you know you’re going to get something special. Foodie travel is big in Italy, of course, and the locals love showing off their wares. So if you fancy seeing where Yotam Ottolenghi was entranced by the flavours and textures of the finest Tuscan food, drop us a line – we have some of the finest hotels, monasteries and other accommodation in Florence and Tuscany. And if you’re into the finer things in life, why not combine it with a trip to the exhilarating Puccini festival?