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sarde in saor

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I heard Venice is the place for sardines, which I love, and that the classic dish is sarde in saor . Which restaurants serve this classic dish and are any places better than others? Do they just serve the sardines fried or is it always served with the marinated onions, pine nuts etc. If not at one of the better restaurants, then I thought maybe I could have this dish at the various bars in the late afternoon as a snack. Any information about this dish would be great to know.

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  1. the fish - it could be fresh sardines, sole or other - "in saor" is fried then marinated in a sauce made with vinegar, oil, fried onions, bay leaf,etc. Its an escabeche treatment. Delicious. Its commonly available - the latest one I remember enjoying was at Anice Stellato in Cannaregio, but im sure PBSF and others can suggest a number of places where you will be able to try it.

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    Anice Stellato
    Cannaregio, 3272, Venezia , IT

    1 Reply
    1. re: jen kalb

      Sarde in saor is a very basic antipasto and therefore available in almost all restaurants in Venice. I cannot remember eating it in a bar, where cicchetti are served. Cicchetti are mostly eaten with fingers or toothpicks only, and sarde in saor will need a fork and a knife in order to remove the fishbones. In a bar you might get rather alici marinate, which is just another name for the Spanish tapa bocquerones (marinated anchovies).

      And it is not only sarde in saor. In some places (e.g. Fiaschetteria Toscana) you will get also anitra in saor (marinated braised duck), or sogliolette in saor (marinated fried baby sole).

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      Fiaschetteria Toscana
      Cannaregio, 5719, Venice, Veneto 30131, IT

    2. You will be able to find fish in saor in just about all the traditional restaurant in Venice. Some bacari serves them also. The fish is always fried with a flour coating and marinated in onion cooked with vinegar; pinenuts and currants/raisins are optional. Some will even remove the center bone to make eating easier. I rarely ordered this dish while dining out, therefore, I don't have have any true recommendations. As stated above, Fiaschetteria Toscana always makes it with sole and not sardine. It was featured as part of the prix-fixed menu last year. As for bacari, I have had it but not recently, at do Spade, Alle Vedova (both good), Al Bomba; the front ciccheti bar at ai promissi di Sposi, ai 4 feri, al la Vivaldi (good), da Alberto (good). When I have guest visiting and they are curious, I buy them at the big supermarket that has a deli section such as Billa, also Punta at Cp Santa Margherita.
      The take out/couple of stool deli, Pronto Pesce Pronto run by the alle Testiere people, sometimes has it. Interesting place just to drop in to take a peak if one is around the Railto market (closed between 2:30 to 5pm).

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      Fiaschetteria Toscana
      Cannaregio, 5719, Venice, Veneto 30131, IT

      1 Reply
      1. re: PBSF

        Thanks you Jen,Strumi, and PBSF for all this wonderful information.As I keep planning I will keep all your recommendations in mind

      2. Do look for gamberoni (shrimp) and even monkfish (coda di rospo), both make smashing saòrs. Some of the best I've had is at Orto dei Mori as an antipasto...but as others have mentioned there are wonderful versions served all over town. Delizioso.

        2 Replies
        1. re: livingvenice

          Curious, how do they cut the monkfish? These dishes are very satisfying, and not hard to make.

          1. re: jen kalb

            Coda di rospo - monkfish is so firm, the tail can be cut up lengthwise and then in pieces for the saòr; it works out very well.

        2. The saor at Al Covo includes sardine, monkfish, prawns and eggplant. I enjoyed it very much, and it's a lot of food for an appetizer.

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          Al Covo
          Campiello della Pescaria,Castello 3968, Venice, Veneto 30122, IT

          2 Replies
          1. re: rrems

            Thank you all for the information about the various preparations for saor. I can't wait!

            1. re: clarkgranny

              looking forward to hearing back about your experiences!