My husband is from Florence, Alabama. Well, technically he is from Killen, but for those of you not from North Alabama, let’s just say the Florence area. I first visited Florence when my husband and I started dating. While in college, I met several people from Florence including my husband. Something that always surprised me is that people from Florence actually loved their small town and wanted to move back there one day. I was used to meeting college age people who longed for bigger and better places than where they grew up, but this attitude about Florence was refreshing.
Florence was listed on a Top Ten Small Towns in America list a couple of years ago, and their downtown is one of the great reasons why. So, when my husband and I decided to head over to Florence to visit family last weekend, I jumped at a chance to spend time downtown with my little family and eat at one of my favorite restaurants!
The beautiful campus of UNA is nestled in the heart of downtown Florence, and it is one of the reasons this downtown is so great. It is a beautiful and historic little campus.
My son had so much fun running around campus. UNA also has real lions on display (their mascot).
The minute you sit down, they bring out bags of fresh, warm bread and their house seasoning (which you add olive oil to). My absolute favorite dish (and the favorite of the women in my husband’s family) is the ravioli. They serve their cheese ravioli with a creamy red sauce.
I get hungry just looking at this picture! They also house a wood burning pizza oven.
I cannot say enough about this place. My husband is also a fan of the fettuccine, but I have never had a dish here that I did not like. Ricatoni’s is listed on the 100 places to eat in Alabama before you die. If you are in the Florence area, it is definitely worth a try.
Our other favorite restaurant downtown that was closed on Sunday, but deserved a shout out, is Trowbridge’s.
Trowbridge’s has been around since 1918. It was also listed on 100 places to eat in Alabama before you die. It has the atmosphere of an old fashioned diner, and it is dearly beloved by all the locals. We prefer to get a chicken salad sandwich there and a hotdog. You can also pick out an ice-cream treat at the counter. You will feel like you are stepping back in a time. This is a great place for the whole family.
If you are ever in the shoals area, or want a fun weekend getaway, you will not regret strolling through downtown Florence.
~ xoxo Laura