Ruggeri and iced-sugared water
Ruggeri was a Florentine butcher and junior chef, who lived in Florence at the beginning of 16th century. The Medici family made a contest to prepare the most unconventional plate ever seen in Florence.
The young butcher decided to prepare what was the first ice cream, that looked like iced water with sugar and a good smell. The Medici felt in love with this new sweet and Ruggeri won the contest.
The sweet recipe spread out Tuscany and the young Caterina de’Medici, decided to bring Ruggeri as her personal chef to France, where she moved to get married to the Duke of Orleans.
Buontalenti and the gelato
Bernardo Buontalenti was a famous Renaissance artist, born in Florence in 1536. He was an architect, painter, sculptor and party planner for the Medici family. He had to organize the party for the opening of Fortezza del Belvedere in 1559.
Buontalenti decided to surprise all guests and Cosimo dei Medici by preparing an iced cream made of milk, honey, yolk and flavored with bergamotto, lemon and orange. This recipe became the famous Buontalenti ice cream, that you can still find in Florence gelaterie.
Since then Florence has become the cradle of gelato whit severals ice cream shops all around.