We were in Venice. We’ve got to be honest, we weren’t very enthusiastic about going. We had been there separately when we were younger and neither of us had great memories of the city: wherever you turned your eyes, thousands of people invaded every street, every bridge, every square. This “Disneyland” for tourists wasn’t really what we usually look for in a trip.
This time, though, we were alone. Well, not ALONE alone, but there was a lot of room to spare. If you also want to try this quite unique sensation, you must wait until these three conditions occur: 1. Low season (we were there in January) 2. A widespread anxiety for Coronavirus disease, which emptied the hotels 3. The defusing of a WWII bomb in Marghera, which blocked all trains in and out of Venice for half day. If options 2 and 3 are not available when you visit the city, option 1 can give you a great deal of satisfaction if you decide to avoid the mainstream and visit less-known streets and neighbourhoods.
Let’s get to the most interesting part of the story, the reason why we came back to Venice: its bàcari! A bacaro is the Italian version of a Spanish tapas bar but, instead of tapas, you will find cicchetti (or cicheti): for around 2-3 euros each (but we also found places where they cost €1.50) you will be able to taste the best of Venetian cuisine, bite-sized. Of course, you must drink a Spritz with them! The authentic Venetian style Spritz is with Select instead of Campari or Aperol. An important detail: there’s no table service in cicchetti. You must order directly at the counter, but in many cases they also have a restaurant and you can order from the menu and be served.
Together with bacari, we also have tips for those of you who have a sweet tooth, for street food lovers… and a fantastic find in Venice Jewish neighbourhood.
The window looked so inviting that we couldn’t help but get in… and we were right! We got a little out of control, so we can suggest many things: try salted codfish and white polenta, potato and truffle cake, salmon with quail egg and caviar, squid ink and white polenta, cheese, pumpkin jam and balsamic vinegar, Vicentina salted codfish and polenta… and the one called Vegetariano (you have to try it)! The sparkling wines are very good.
Simple, genuine, cheap. We tasted four cicchetti here: the herring one, their meatball, the squid with its ink and the cheese, caramelised onion and walnut one. Everything was delicious. The Spritz made with Select was very good.
In this osteria you can arrive at happy hour time then move to restaurant part and have your meal. We started with sarde in saor (sardines Venetian style, with onions, vinegar, pine nuts and raisins, a must-try when you’re in town), frittata with vegetables, their fried fish, plus a meatball and a fish meatball. We continued to eat in the restaurant and tasted a portion of spaghetti with squids and their ink, plus a portion of spaghetti with squid and tomatoes. Everything was very good, wines included.
Don’t miss the salted codfish crouton, and the zucchini flower. Their sarde in saor, fried codfish, shrimp and razor shells were good as well.
The icing on the cake during our walk in the Jewish neighbourhood (a must-do in Venice). This restaurant is the perfect combination of koser tradition and Venetian cuisine. The “Gam Gam” starter is a must-try, their humus is an explosion of flavours. Try also the Shwarma (chicken with spices) and their kabob (simply mouth-watering). Portions are very rich.
Creative cicchetti, small but very nice place. Do not miss it during your stay.
Filled with pistachio, apples, custard cream… be careful: their frittelle are addictive.
Just two words: pistachio tiramisu.
Try their passion fruit or pistachio pastries (why not both?)
Sorry, no photos here, we devoured everything and totally forgot about it! Venetian street food at its best.
©Where The Foodies Go