The charming city of Venice is a popular tourist destination, and rightly so, but with so many tourists it can be a struggle to find some authentic cuisine that is budget friendly!
This being my first trip to Italy, let alone Venice, I wanted to try some proper Italian food. I asked around, did some research and here are my favourites:
1. Fresh pasta – Dal Moro’s Fresh Pasta to Go
Area: San Marco
Dal Moro’s Fresh Pasta to Go is a great place to go to get your pasta fix in Venice. It’s fresh, it’s fast and it’s very reasonably priced. You get to choose your type of pasta and sauce e.g pesto, carbonara, tomato and my personal favourite – squid ink. Being a city on the sea, seafood is a big thing in Venice, so you kinda have to try the squid ink pasta.
Eating black food was actually pretty good, though it took a while for my brain and eyes to adjust to eating something that really doesn’t look like food. The added bonus is that squid ink has the same comic effect as a mouthful of blackjacks. So try it and entertain that child in you.
What to try: The squid ink pasta.2. Gelato – Gelatoteca Suso
Area: San Marco
Despite it being winter, it was no excuse not to try some delicious gelato. The best gelato I had was from Gelatocea Suso. They had lots of great and decadent flavours to choose from. We went for the peanut butter and the pistachio – both were exceedingly rich and delectable.
What to try: The silky smooth pistachio gelato
Area: Osteria Al Squero – Dorsoduro
El Rofolo – Castello
Venice is renowned for its great cicchetti – basically small plates of food. Tapas really. It’s what the locals eat and is great because you get to try lots of different foods.
The best thing is that it is all very reasonably priced, normally around €1.60-2.00 per cichetti. Wine is also a big deal at these cicchetti bars, so you can basically just stay there all evening drinking and eating, eating and drinking. Pretty great, eh?
I didn’t get to visit as many local cicchetti bars as I would have liked but I did enjoy a lunch and an espresso at Osteria Al Squero (a stone’s throw from the Peggy Guigghem) and an evening at El Rofolo, located away from the main tourist hub in the charming Castello region.
What to try: Fresh and hot arancini balls from Osteria Al squero and later on grab a cheese and meat platter to nibble on as you wine away your evening at El Rofolo.
4. Pizza – Crazy Pizza
You can’t visit Italy without grabbing pizza and you don’t have to fork out at a fancy or overpriced tourist restaurant to grab a really good pizza. We really liked Crazy Pizza, located in San Marco. It doesn’t look like much from the outside, but this takeaway shack served us up some great pizzas. It was all made in front of us, using fresh, delicious ingredients and again, was really reasonably priced. Just under 6 euros for a decent sized margherita.
What to try: The classic margherita.
5. Coffee – Torrefazione Cannaregio
Being a coffee lover I was really keen to try coffee in Italy. I really liked Tmorrefazione Cannaregio. Here these coffee mavens roast their own beans on site and have a coffee selection extensive enough to cover coffee grown in all corners of the globe. As well as a few tourists, we also spotted some locals in here, who were either sipping their strong espressos at the bar or knocking them back in one fell swoop before heading to work. A good way to start the day.
What to try: Knock back an espresso.
Where have you eaten in Venice? Let me know for next time.