Harry’s Bar Monthly Lunch Specials

Risotto with zucchini pesto, zucchini blossom and red shrimp tartare/photo & video by Olivia Synek

Right off the bank of the Arno lies a gem of Florence preserved from the passage of time. Harry’s Bar combines the classic ambiance of the 1950s with modern offerings to create an elegant and secluded atmosphere for Florentines and visitors alike to escape. 

Harry’s Bar prides itself on being an experience for all who step through its doors: “much more than a restaurant, not just an American Bar.”  While the venue itself is unchanged from its beginnings in the 50s, Harry’s Bar has found ways to continue drawing customers in through its recently introduced monthly menus. 

Guests now have the opportunity to try novel variations in addition to the signature dishes they know and love. Through the monthly specials, the chefs are able to express their creativity and use fresh, seasonal products to create enticing courses.

To see a slide show of featured dishes, click here.

The catch of the day featured a tender white fish beautifully marinated and decorated with juicy tomatoes. The restaurant’s real silverware sliced effortlessly through the filet, and a small plate of garden-fresh vegetables drizzled with olive oil complemented the flavor. 

Another monthly special comprised crispy cod accented with caponata, an eggplant and vegetable medley, and pepper cream. The crunch of the outside paired wonderfully with the delicate fish, enhanced by the generous amount of sauce. A full plate of creamy risotto with zucchini pesto, zucchini blossom and red shrimp tartare melts in your mouth, easily leaving you content with the array of flavors.

Guests can expect equally unique and quality selections on the July menu, accompanied by the traditional wide selection of meats, fish, plates of pasta and more. With a true international flavor, the menu is influenced by various cuisines, as seen through the section dedicated to different types of hamburgers and a curry dish.

Regardless of the choice, every dish is light and made with locally-sourced ingredients, allowing customers to either walk out satisfied or stay for dessert.

Once the dessert menu comes, however, it’s hard to resist the temptation to indulge oneself in the mouthwatering titles. The dessert menu also includes its own monthly specials, created by the restaurant’s exclusive dessert chef with a clear attention to detail. 

The signature crepes flambées are cooked right next to the table, emanating heat as they are prepared. The picturesque lemon tart has a sweet filling with a crumbly crust, a portion that is definitely enough to share, and the honey yogurt is adorned with an assortment of plump berries. Another special of the month is a dark chocolate cake with almonds and coconut mousse, embellished with a small flower, and the rich flavor serves as a sublime conclusion to a meal.

The bar offers classic cocktails and Harry’s specialties, and an extensive wine list accompanies the à la carte menu. 

Enrico Mariotti and Raffaello Sabatini created Harry’s Bar in 1953, when Florence wasn’t the bustling attraction that visitors know today, but a smaller, provincial city. As the first American bar in Florence, it was one of the only locations during that time where guests could eat and drink all day long. With comfortable seating and the constant lull of good conversation, it wouldn’t be difficult to lose track of time in the effortless, serene environment.

The softly-lit space is decorated with historical artwork of various views of Florence. Although the wood and aura of the inside may seem masculine, the pink wall and rose-colored table cloths create a juxtaposition that is both traditional and unique. 

The bar offers classic cocktails and Harry’s specialties, and an extensive wine list accompanies the à la carte menu. 

Located at Lungarno Amerigo Vespucci, 22/R, the outside patio allows guests to take in the sweeping view of the Arno, at the same time that the inside captivates diners with its timelessness and romantic feel. 

For a slightly different experience with the same hospitality and elegance as the original, one can try out the new location of Harry’s Bar. In 2021, Harry’s Bar The Garden opened, hosted by ​​five-star hotel Sina Villa Medici in the heart of Florence at ​​Via Il Prato 42. A restaurant, bistro and American bar all in one, guests can take part in poolside dining in the lush garden of the hotel. The new location also provides a monthly menu.

Harry’s Bar is surely a fine-dining experience to splurge on, and come prepared to do so as the menu does not list prices, but dishes range from 22-50 euros.  The restaurant is open Tuesday to Saturday from noon to 11 pm and Sunday from 12-4 pm. Reservations can be made either online or by phone, and the cover fee is €5.  (natasha sokoloff)