Set in the east of Florence, just a couople of minutes walk from Piazza Santa Croce is the market of Sant'Ambrogio, the choice of many florentine to make their daily purchases. Inside to iron vaulted building are found butchers, bakers, fishmongers (thought mercato central is better for choice of fish) and a thriving restaurant - Rocco's. Outside is predominantly fruit and vegetable sellers, with flowers, bric-a-brac, clothing and houshold goods.
The market was built in the period when the Kingdom of Italy was fromed, in the 1860's, along with the Mercato centrale and San Frediano. Until the 1950's Sant'Ambrogio was the main fruit and vegetable wholesale market for the city vestiges of this are present in today's lively market stalls. Several farmers and smallholders sell at the market as well as the fruit traders. By 1pm the outside market stalls are cleared away and the space doubles as a free carpark; one of the very few in Florence!
For budget eats and comunal dining Rocco's is the first choice of Florentines. More refined dining can be found 30 yards from the market at Il Cibreo.