Top 10 bacari of Venice
In Venice there are monuments not to be missed, breathtaking views and surreal atmospheres. But let’s not forget that the city is the wonder that we all know and appreciate also thanks to its delicious food. We cannot therefore say that we really lived Venice deep down without having tried the experience of its bacari. Here the top 10 bacari in Venice.
Bacaro, what is it?
But what exactly is a bacaro? Do you know those places that feel like home immediately? Those where a glass of good wine and a few appetizing snacks change your day? A bacaro is all of this and much more. Halfway between a restaurant and a winery, between a bar and a tavern. It is an informal and familiar place to spend time doing what Venetians really do well, eat and drink in company.
Above I mentioned appetizing snacks but if you don’t want Venetians to get angry, don’t even think you can call them that way. As in Venice there is a very specific term that defines them: cicchetti.
The cicchetti are the so-called “Venetian tapas”. A series of croutons, meatballs, skewers (usually fish) little sandwiches and other delicious finger food. You can enjoy them during the holy aperitivo time but also for a quick lunch.
The cicchetti are especially the perfect choice to fully enjoy what we call “bacarotour”. It is a sort of super Venetian tour from bacaro to bacaro to be able to taste the most varied cicchetti and to drink good wine ( a lot of it!). Have a chat with friends enjoying the cheerful and festive atmosphere typical of these circumstances. In short, going for bacari means drinking and eating, having fun and being fine together.
Now that you know that your staying in Venice will necessarely have to include a stop in one of these typical informal bars, how can you find the best bacari? The city is actually so rich in tourist traps and so full of narrow streets and labyrinthine calli that you really risk not to find the right places.
Best bacari in Venice
Here is a list of the top 10 bacari in Venice and where to find them, to be able to live and enjoy the city like a real Venetian.
Cantina Do Spade
Cantina Do Spade is located in a central area in San Polo district. A short walk from the Rialto Bridge but well hidden in a suggestive secondary calletta. It’s one of the most popular bacari of the city . It offers a typical cuisine that ranges from fish, the great protagonist of the Venetian tradition, to meat. You will therefore find the classic sarde in saor (sardines first fried and then marinated with vinegar onions). The inevitable baccalà mantecato (creamed codfish). Fried squid but also meatballs with tomato sauce and fegato alla veneziana (liver with vinegar onions).
It is located in the beautiful setting of the Fondamenta dei Ormesini, in the district perhaps richest in authentic bacari: Cannaregio. The Paradiso Perduto with its blue curtains, its alternative atmosphere and its wooden furnishings is the perfect choice for those who love informal style and conviviality. In addition to the amazing local cuisine you can sometimes enjoy live music. The specialty is certainly fried fish.
You can find it in Dorsoduro district, not far from the famous Campo Santa Margherita. Perfect for a quick but tasty lunch. Alla Toletta basically means one thing: dreamy tramezzini. The tramezzini are delicious litlle triangular sandwiches with fillings that range from the classic ham, mushrooms and mayonnaise to the most refined rocket and crab. You will be spoiled for choice, they are all spectacular!
Bacareto da Lele
Near the Tolentini church, not far from Piazzale Roma, in Dorsoduro district, there is a small bar that attracts especially young people: the Bacareto da Lele. Here you can find a forever winning combination: a good glass of house wine and a little sandwich, perhaps with good Venetian Soppressa salami. The atmosphere is informal and joyful and Lele is a real institution in Venice.
If you are in the Rialto area, in Campo Bella Vienna, close to the vaporetto stop Rialto Mercato in San Polo district, you have to stop for a spritz combined with a tuna meatball or a good little sandwich at the Mercà. The place is very small and has no seats but that way you can live an entirely Venetian experience, that of an upright aperitivo. The Campo is always full of life and the fun is guaranteed.
La Vedova is located in the Cannaregio district along one of the most tourist streets of the city: Strada Nuova. But do not be fooled, it is well hidden in a secondary calle and it perfectly maintains its fully Venetian character. La Vedova means only one thing: spectacular meatballs! There is also the possibility of stopping for a proper meal but the hot and crispy meatballs are truly its distinctive feature.
Another place located in the super venetian district of Cannaregio. Another place located in the beautiful setting of the Fondamenta dei Ormesini, very close to the Jewish Ghetto. Its cicchetti are perhaps the most famous in the whole city. Their specialty are for sure croutons. You can find them with meat (for example with sausage and cheese) or fish ( for example with creamed codfish) and they can be classic or extravagant. You also have to try the baked potate sticks. If you love meat it would be a really good idea to stop even for a super dish of grilled meat!
Bacarando in Corte dell’Orso
Not far from the Rialto bridge, in San Polo district and well hidden behind the super crowded Campo San Bortolo, you find Bacarando in Corte dell’Orso. The place, entirely decorated in wood, is simply lovely. The cicchetti are rich and varied. We go from meat and fish croutons, to mozzarelle in carrozza ( small sandwiches stuffed with mozzarella and other ingredients such as ham, anchovies, salmon dipped in batter and then fried) to fish skewers and savory pies.
Let’s go back to the already mentioned Fondamenta dei Ormesini in Cannaregio district. You have to make a stop in a relatively new place but already perfectly framed in the Venetian reality: Ae Bricoe. The staff is really nice and the cicchetti are delicious. Meatballs are recommended but especially you have to try the sandwiches with Porchetta, a real treat!
Taverna al Remer
Very popular with Venetians, located in San Polo district in the Campiello del Remer. Perhaps one of the most hidden and evocative of the city because it overlooks the Grand Canal directly. It will offer you a classy and yet not expensive aperitivo with a priceless view. Also perfect for a romantic dinner. It detaches itself from the more informal atmosphere of the others but it maintains its simple Venetian soul.
As you can see a city is not made only of its artistic wonders but also of those of everyday life. The bacari of Venice are what make it real and alive by binding it inextricably to its inhabitants and its people.
It seems like all you have to do now is to pack your bags, empty your stomachs and plunge yourselves headlong into the top 10 bacari in Venice! You’ll love it!