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Mar 19, 2014 03:38 PM

Meat in Venice?

Soon to be in Venice for two weeks with spouse who does not eat fish. (He's working in Venice and inviting me along -- can't complain.) We need some casual / delicious restaurants in any location that are reliably good for meat. Family-owned perhaps, not touristy (I know, I know), that will be open for early (7:30ish) dinner. Preferably they won't need advance reservations so we can decide at the last minute with only a phone call to book.
Thanks much.

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  1. La Bitta in Dorsoduro, very near Campo San Barnaba, is a great non seafood option. They generally have two seatings, at 7 and 9.

    1. Thanks jangita. Perfect suggestion and a six minute walk from our apartment. I cannot find any way to make a reservation on-line but I assume a phone call when we arrive mid-day will do for a 7:00 seating. I appreciate heads up about cash. I'm still interested in others -- we have lots of eating to do.

      1. As Jangita pointed out, La Bitta is great for a non fish restaurant. But you definitely need to reserve, since they are almost always booked.

        Don't over worry too much about finding a non-fish restaurant. Most places will almost always have meat, or at least non-fish options. But the best places too book up!

        1. Thanks for the reservations advice. I tried to find out how to reserve for La Bitta. No success. Will the afternoon of the April 7th be enough time to reserve for that night at 7:00? If not, any advice how to reserve on-line?

          5 Replies
          1. re: elizabeth2929

            No one can tell you for sure if you can get a reservation for dinner if you call that afternoon. La Bitta is small and popular and generally booked for their two evening seatings. Of course, you might be lucky that it happens to be a slow night or there was a cancellation. Like many small osterie, La Bitta does not deal with on-line reservations. Have you try telephoning them? They speak English.
            In general, most osterie/trattorie are small and the good ones are popular, especially for the early seating. If you have a list of 'go to' places, good chance that you get a table reserving that afternoon at one of them. April is the beginning of group tour season, Venice get crowded.

            1. re: PBSF

              @PBSF, have you been to Oniga across the square from La Bitta, or to Pane Vino e San Daniele down by Anzolo Raffaele? They also offer meat dishes as does of course Ai Gondolieri at the other end of Dorsoduro and L'Avogaria which has been recommended here sometimes.Ive not visited any of these except one of the Pane Vino outlets, for a snack, but this one is supposed to offer full meals.

              1. re: jen kalb

                I'm not PBSF, but we've been to Oniga, where we had one of the worst meals we've ever had in Italy, if not the worst -- the Italians sitting next to us actually complained to the management about their dinner. We've had 2 excellent lunches at the Pane Vino e San Daniele you mention, on a lovely campo -- definitely a full menu. Another choice, although it would be a hike, is La Zucca (in Santa Croce), where we've had good lamb and duck.

                1. re: jen kalb

                  I last time I ate at Oniga was more than 5 years ago. Then, they offer a set lunch for around 14euros. I remember a dish similar Hungarian Goulash. Wasn't bad and pleasant tables on the Campo San Barnaba.
                  As for Pano Vino e San Daniele, we like the one on calle Lunga S Barnaba for mostly glasses of wine and antipasti. All of them offer a full menu with mostly non-seafood item but we've have never found them appealing. Definitely a non-reservation sort of place. Same for their other 3 or 4 other locations.
                  L'Avogaria is also on the same calle Lunga; never eaten there. I pass by it frequently and always found the hotel dining room sort of a turn off, a personal thing.
                  Ai Gondolieri is good but more formal and expensive; can probably get a weekday dinner reservation on the same afternoon.
                  My thought is that unless both parties do not eat seafood, go to any good trattorie/osterie (except the 5 or 6 that serves only seafood). Just about all will have items that will satisfy a non-seafood eater. And if the OP is reluctant to make reservation in advance, La Zucca is pointless. There is never an empty table at dinner.

                  1. re: PBSF

                    We ate at Oniga, 4 years ago and everyone in our party of 4 found it disappointing.
                    Ate at Pane Vino e San Daniele on San Barnaba, 2 years ago, and had a very enjoyable, simple meal.

            2. Fiaschetteria Toscana will have several meat options on the menu. Prices are on the expensive side.


              1 Reply
              1. re: DavidT

                I second the motion for Fiachetteria Toscana
                Salizada S.Giovanni Grisostomo, Cannaregio 5719 Venezia
                ☎ 041 52 85 281. Try the liver and onions. Ask for th waiter Roberto, who has been there 40 years. Last Feb 8 he had excellent service and took me over to the desert table and described all the desset. I had the rack of lamb with Amarone wine. I had for desset the almond cake.
                all wonderful!