With government restrictions on wood fire ovens in Venice, there’s a surprising lack of pizza, but plenty of great fare everywhere in Venice. Similar to tapas, you’ll find cicchetti served at most cafes, fine dining options, delis, and if you know where to look, some great street eats too.
1. Ristorante Ai Tre Garofani
Located a little bit closer to the mainland in Assegiano, it’s ideal for outdoor dining when weather permits. Even better, it’s also one of the more economically priced Michelin-starred restaurants. Focussing on fresh seafood and Italian wine, it’s worth the venture towards the mainland.
2. Osteria Alle Testiere
It doesn’t get more romantic than a quaint little restaurant in the heart of the city, just meters from the Rialto Bridge. Serving the best of what’s fresh daily from the fish market, this restaurant has only nine tables, ideal for plenty of quiet conversation.
3. Bacareto Da Lele
In local Italian style, you’ll stand up and dine on a variety of cicchetti and Panini with a glass (or two) of wine or an Aperol Spritz. It can get crowded quickly as it’s a local favourite, but well worth the wait.
4. Il Refolo
Another small restaurant with big offerings, this tiny restaurant seating only 16 will have you feeling like your dining with family. Serving up pastas and pizza and owned by well-known local grappa-makers, it naturally showcases grappas and liqueurs.
Cocaeta serves up crepes with a twist. Not exactly authentic Italian and when you see the queue outdoors you may second guess it, but wait right there. You won’t regret it. There are plenty of sweet and savoury options and vegetarian friendly too.
6. Trattoria Alla Basillica
If the city is becoming a little ruthless on your wallet, Alla Basilica can be a blessing for some great cheap eats. Run by the Diocese of Venice and gaining popularity with the locals, you can grab a budget-friendly, generously portioned lunch with fresh ingredients.
7. Osteria Boccadoro
Fine dining away from the touristy crowd and translating into ‘golden mouth’, it’s a favourite of many famous faces and politicians looking for a private place to dine. Offering authentic Venetian dishes, fresh fish, local ingredients and homemade pasta, Osteria Boccadoro is quiet and elegant.
8. Prosciutto E Parmigiano
Grab some cured meats, cheeses and olives from this delicatessen and head back to your accommodation for a cheap eat. Everything is takeaway as there are no tables, but once you step inside, you’ll be back several times over. Grab something delicious and go explore.
9. Locanda Cipriani
Further out from the centre of Venice on Torcello Island, you’ll enjoy a fine dining experience that’s hosted the likes of Queen Elizabeth II, Ernest Hemingway and Paul Newman. Family owned since it’s opening in 1938, there’s plenty of history and delicious family recipes here.
10. Dai Tosi
If you’re travelling with children or just serious about getting authentic pizza, Dai Tozi is family friendly and serves up pizza that’s filling and wallet friendly. A nearby restaurant has a similar name so make sure to ask for 'Dai Tosi Piccoli' (Little Dai Tosi).