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Venice (Venezia) Report

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Venice (Venezia) Report

Anil Khullar | Apr 29, 2000 10:32 AM

Earlier this month I had asked this group aboutrecommendations for Venice [See that thread ref. below]So We just returned from Venezia ;-).After much research both here @ chowhound and asking friends+people in the know -We decided that we'd do one touristy (romantic views)expensive meal and the rest would be expeditions ;-) into the alleys of Venice.Most restaurants in the tourist thoroughfare zones have menus in four languages + Plus a Turistic Menu (whichmeans fixed price with primo,secondi, vino and variations on either dolci or antipasto) These rangefrom 17,000 to 90,0000/per [ $100 = 200,000+ Lira ].If you can avoid some of these places the better you are.In our specific descriptions of places I have listed what we paid for two people.Avoid if you can places in and around the Piazza San Marco for meals.The Piazza is great sitting out,for having small snacks and beer or wine/or coffee and people watching. Beer (medium) is approx 8-10,000Having arrived late afternoon and being jet lagged(we were staying behind Opera La Fenice [burnt down and now being rebuilt]) we mosy-ed around the nearby alleys and found a self-service type of Osteria with no printed menu. For stabilizing our stomachs and body clock we chose to have a light meal. A plate of fresh new spaghetti with mixedseafood, sardines in olive oil;fritto misto; stew over rice; and small carafe of blanco vino all for L32,000.We sat out by the alley under the canopy - Good value for money.A brief impression of some of the restaurants/Osterias we ate at. We had approx 18 - 20 seperate meals, small and large.Osteria Dolo, 778 San Polo Near Rialto Bridge: Thisis a small crowded osteria which has excellent mixed seafood antipasto. Order spahgatti with clams[ This is a venetian local favourite]. For dessert stick to local icecream. L30,000Taverna La Fenice, 1938 San Marco: This is a smallrestaurant where I had Scampi in lemon and buttery sauce. Simple pasta in wine sauce and mussels.L90,000Bacaro Jazz, 5546 San Marco: Near Rialto area. This place reminded me of Tapas bars in Barcelona,Spain.This place plays jazz, the persons have california influence, or so I was told. What we did was pointed at various chicheti (sp?) consisting of meats,seafood, veggies breads with spreads etc.. and pint of beer. All said L45,000Pizzaria by the sidewalk cafe in Lido (opposite Ansonia Hotel): I had the hot-oil,onions and four cheese pizza with wheat beer. Lidowas quiet and a refreshing change over the otherislands (We were in the middle of Easter holidays;-))Pizzas in Venice range approx 9,000 - 19,000.L34,000.Al Ponte, 2741 San Polo: This is increadibily inexpensive informal osteria. Try whatever is onthe board. We had a hugh bowl of Mussels in Clear sauce. fish and rice; and seafood soup; fried vegs;croccettes; L48,000Restaurante Fenice: Had cold mixed seafood antipasto, gnocchi pommodoro con pono; a botle chianti wine;The antipasto was fresh and wide variety (according to the waiter it varies depending to what the chef got from the market in the morning). The pasta was so-so.L85,000We ate in many stand-in places in Accademia,Ca D'oro,S. Marcuola which had fresh but limited variety of dishes. We had a snack in a Turkish cafe in San Polo.During our walks around town,w e spotted a couple of chinese rests; one indian restaurant, two irish pubs, but bag'ed them all.SOME DO's and DONT's:DO buy a weekly ACTV pass for Vaporette; Hop on / Hop off no:1 no:82 public boats; helps getting to cafesall over the town.DO check out sidewalk cafes off the beaten path. Many places have very few tables, so do not hesitate tostand and enjoy a paninni or desserts and espresso.DO expect some waitstaff to get annoyed if you askfor just a secondi, or order coffee along with, or before you meal begins ;-).DO explictly tell the wait staff your wine details.i.e 1/2 liter or he'll bring in a one liter which one may or maynot be in a mood to finish.DO pay with the credit cards if the place accepts it.It will get you a better exchange rate. This way if you want to leave the tip, you just pay it in cash. Theprintout that come with the CC bill has no place for adding the tip. So if you want to include the tip inthe CC, write the amount on the check, so that when the wait staff takes your card, he/she will key in the correct total amount.DONT expect ristaurante to serve wine by the glass;or have a waitstaff come by and offer fresh pepper from the peppermill ;-)DONT get intimidated into leaving a tip if you did notget a good service - Cover charge and service chargeis automatically included in most places. Cover ranges from 2,000 - 4,000 per person; service chg. is 12%.DONT expect the service quality to that of NYC ;-).Before I get flamed on this - I think by and large waitstaff work very hard in NYC to please their customers.There are quite a few places I have left off. I'll probably write about those later ;-)AnilPS: Next, I will begin researching Hong Kong ;-)

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