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Jul 8, 2011 10:27 AM

Venice and Florence - Need Recommendations!

Doing the bucket list trip to Florence and Venice and are hoping to set up some dinner reservations. We are looking for some special restaurants where the focus is the food but also where the environment is at least somewhat friendly. This really is a bucket list type trip so we are looking for that "special" place. Thanks for any input!

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  1. Would love to help you, but am having trouble figuring out what you mean by 'bucket list type trip.' Also, by 'special' do you mean splurge? Or off the beaten track low cost? Narrow it down, and I'm happy to help!

    8 Replies
    1. re: minchilli

      What he/she means by bucket list is that Florence and Venice are on a list of things to do before he/she dies. Florence and Venice will now be able to be checked off a list.

      It seems to me that there is plenty on this site to satisfy this person's needs. If only they would spend five minutes looking. Why are people who want help, so lazy. Simply amazing.

      1. re: allende

        Why are people on Chowhound so rude? Simply amazing.

        They were asking for help, not to be bullied.

        1. re: allende

          First time on Chowhound - will take your recommendation regarding searching for recent posts. Also, if posts such as mine really bother you, should consider gettting a life...

        2. re: minchilli

          Sorry for using the "bucket list" term - I should have been more thoughtful. Since Venice and Florence are a once in a lifetime trip for us, looking for those special restaurants that will make the trip that much more memorable. Your term, "splurge," probably best describes what we are looking for thanks.

          1. re: enharthun

            enharthun - Here's a link to my dining report from our last trip ('08). We leave for Venice this weekend and are very excited about returning to some of these places as well as exploring some new options that I've compiled.


            1. re: enharthun

              Ok, now I understand 'bucket list!'
              And so sorry that you were 'yelled' at. No reason for that. Most of us here on chowhound are here to help, and happy to do so

              Ora d'Aria: Very small, very upscale restaurant with up and coming stellar chef Marco Stabile. Although it's 'fancy', the staff make you feel welcomed and the atmosphere is not stuffy at all. Ask for a table upstairs, so you can watch the goings on in the kitchen.
              Osteria Personale: Cool new place on the other side of the river. Almost feels like a New York restaurant, but in a very good way. Food is outstanding! A creative take on Florentine classics. Definitely have the five course tasting menu, which you put together yourself.

              Venissa: Magical new restaurant on the island of Mazzorba. A half hour boat ride from Venice. Go early, have a stroll around neighboring Burano, and have candle lit dinner in the garden.
              Have a great time!

              Fondamena Santa Caterina 3, Isola di Mazzorbo, Venice, Veneto 30142, IT

              Ora d'Aria
              Via de' Georgofili,11, Florence, Toscana 50122, IT

              Osteria Personale
              Borgo San Frediano, 167r, Florence, Toscana , IT

              1. re: minchilli

                With all due respect, if I were going to Florence and Venice on a once-in-a-lifetime trip, I would not want the newest, trendiest, most "in" places, with a New York vibe, no less. I'd want places more typical of Florence and Venice that did the traditional cooking of Florence and Venice *without* the creative twist.

                For Venice, I suggest you look at PBSF's suggestions. Unfortunately, there's no one comparable for Florence.

                1. re: zerlina

                  With all due respect zerlina....these are places that I have been to and loved. They are among the best restaurants in Florence at the moment. And since you don't have a comparable list to suggest yourself for Florence...would you have them just not eat?

          2. It would be well worth your while to go to the search box in the upper right-hand corner of this page and do searches for both cities. You will find hundreds of prior posts with helpful suggestions and recommendations already here for you to review.

            Da Fiori, Fiaschetteria Toscano and Al Covo are regarded by some as being among the "best" restaurants in Venice. Again, you can find comments about those restaurants if you do a search for those names.

            1 Reply
            1. re: DavidT

              Appreciate the advice and recommendations - thanks so much!

            2. Below are links to recent posts on Venice that might be helpful:
              I dont think people are necessarily rude on chowhound. Many posters on the Italy board, including locals, are very knowledgeable and freely give recommendations and advice. Posts that tend to get ignored are those that are vague in nature, especially for the big three of Italy: Rome, Florence and Venice. The reasons being that these three cities have been cover so often that there is not much else to say other than being more repetitive. Also, if a poster gives some specifics on what he/she are looking for, other than "the best, romantic, where locals eat, cheap but fantastic", posters on this board can give recommendations that are useful. What is romantic, cheap, etc, for one person can be different for another. For me, I find it useless if someone just throw a bunch of restaurant names to me.

              5 Replies
              1. re: PBSF

                I understand PBSF, and I've found you to be extremely pleasant (and reliable) for Venice and Barcelona. More than anything, I was shocked by the tone of the response (to someone who is excited about planning a very special trip). It wasn't meant as an indictment of chowhound, although I do find the Italy board to be a bit cliquish and not always friendly to posters.

                1. re: MBlair

                  My post was not rude nor bullying. Some of us have spent a great deal of time helping other people on this site... a great deal of time. However, when someone doesn't even spend a small amount of time looking at all the prior posts, I'd call that laziness, particularly when someone uses the phrase "bucket list type trip."

                  As a number of others have said on this board and the French board (and now I'll join them), they are very happy to give good concrete information, but there is an obligation of the person asking to do a little bit of work by searching the archives (that's what the archives are there for). Also, when one asks for help, one should have the courtesy to file a report after a trip, which very few take the time to do.

                  And there are no cliques on this board Mr. Blair. I know no one and I'd bet that few others know anyone else. Some of us simply want to use our knowledge of Italy to help others have a good trip, and have them wind up at restaurants that are not merely run of the mill. That, at least, has always been my intention.

                  By the way, I was perplexed at the OP's comment in trying to chose a restaurant "where the environment is at least somewhat friendly." Was it the thought that people on this board would sent someone to a place where the environment was not friendly?

                  1. re: allende

                    With all due respect, allende, if you don't feel that your first post was rude, I don't think there's much more to be said.

                    1. re: MBlair

                      With all due respect to you Mr. Blair, if you find the use of the word lazy to be rude, we are on very different wavelengths.

                    2. re: allende

                      I am willing to give the benefit of the doubt to a new poster. But in general, I find it irksome when someone requests general information about a city on the tourist trail ("I will have three nights in Rome. Where should I eat?") without having bothered to read the many previous threads on the same. I find it a bit rude to expect people here to take the time to type the same information over and over again. Allende, and many others, have been generous in sharing their experiences. These reports and comments are very easy to find with a search.

                      And please, do not forget to return the favor by posting about your experiences after you return home, so that we all can benefit.

                2. I second Elizabeth's recommendation for Venissa!
                  Also in Venice I recommend Antiche Carampane highly.
                  I posted a trip report from our trip that included Venice last year - I was happy with every place we ate, especially the cicchetti stops.
                  In Florence I would go back to Sostanza in a heart beat - their chicken breasts poached in butter are heavenly.

                  Antiche Carampane
                  Calle de la Carampane, 1911,San Polo, Venice, Veneto 30125, IT

                  Via della Porcellana, 25, 50123, Florence, Tuscany 50123, IT

                  Fondamena Santa Caterina 3, Isola di Mazzorbo, Venice, Veneto 30142, IT