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Typical foods you need to try in Venice

Full of history, the city of Venice, in the Veneto region, is one of the most visited places in Italy and offers splendid cuisine. Today we are going to find out which typical foods you need to try in Venice.

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Typical foods you need to try in Venice

When we talk about Venice, in Veneto, the first thing that comes to mind is its canals. Considered one of the most romantic cities in the world, Venice offers us, in addition to a lot of culture and history, a very special cuisine. Today I invite you to discover with me the typical foods of Venice. Here at  Your Travel to Italy with Ana Patricia  you make the trip of your dreams !!! ALSO: see our  “Accommodation in Italy – Tips for your holidays!”.


Before our tour: watch this video about Venice!!


Our Introduction

Talking about Italian gastronomy is always a challenge: the country offers dishes for all tastes and budgets and choosing the best can be an almost impossible mission. So today, I bring you a short list of typical Venetian foods that you MUST try!

It is good to remember that Italian cuisine presents us with a fusion cuisine, and each region invented, recreated, gave its personal touch and perfected different flavors (many of them brought to the country by the different peoples who passed through there over the centuries) in a unique way and with its very special details. If there’s something in this world that Italians have mastered, it’s the art of eating well and, obviously, this is reflected in their way of cooking, which has become a symbol of the Italians’ passion for good food.

A little bit of the history of Venetian gastronomy

Due to its privileged position, Venice quickly became a major trading power and, with its ships built at the Arsenale, travel to the East was facilitated and it did not take long for the Serenissima to become a link between the eastern and western world.

The exchange with peoples so far away marked the entire history of the archipelago, as well as its gastronomy. This cultural exchange easily explains some dishes from the Veneto region that perhaps “do not look Italian”. Venetian cuisine was one of the first in Italy to “embrace” new flavors, aromas and ideas, creating fantastic cuisine.

It is characterized by the strong presence of spices, full of colors and seasonings such as pepper, ginger, saffron, nutmeg, cinnamon and cloves – just to name a few – that began to be part of the Venetian cuisine. Spices are widely used in the preparation of fish, meat and sweets; all this was also used for health treatments, as many believed that spices had great beneficial power against diseases, especially those related to the stomach. The flavors, together with the Venetian ingredients, merge to form incredible dishes, which mix the spicy, the sweet with the spicy, the salty with the sour and exploding in our mouths in a sublime, unique, international way.

Curiosity:

  • Rice, so widespread in Italian cuisine, came from the East. The product was so expensive that they sold it grain by grain.

1) Typical foods you need to try in Venice: Bigoli in salsa

Bigoli is a specialty prepared throughout the Veneto region. Bigoli is a pasta accompanied by a sauce that can often be made with meat or fish. The one seasoned with fish, based on onions and anchovies, is very typical at Christmas. Bigoli are made with wheat flour and are about 2 millimeters thick. The dough gains a firm consistency and the sauce is very creamy.

2) Typical foods you need to try in Venice: Risi and Bisi

This is one of the most consumed dishes by the locals. It is a super traditional dish and can be presented with many variations. This dish is neither a risotto nor a soup: it is a mixture of the two and is delicious! This was the dish of the Doges, eaten every 25th of April in honor of the feast of Saint Mark, patron saint of Venice. The rice (Risi) was strictly from Veronese, and the peas (Bisi) were from Lumignano, in the province of Vicenza. The typical Risi and Bisi is made with Veronese rice and peas from Colognola ai Colli (VR), or from Baone from the Padua region. The recipe is simple (and patented! Its patent was applied for in 2013 by the municipality of Scorzè, and is registered with the Venice Chamber of Commerce) and the end result is a creamy and tasty balance.

3) Typical foods you need to try in Venice: Venetian liver

The famous “figà àea venessiana”, in the local dialect, is a VERY traditional dish and loved by the locals. It is a very quick recipe to make and is very tasty, since it takes in its preparation the delicious caramelization of the onion that, during cooking, tends to become sweet. The flavor contrast between the strong flavor of the liver and the sweetness of the onion, intoxicates our taste buds! They use pork liver, but the dish can also be made with beef liver. The meat is cut into medium-sized strips and cooked together with the white onion, strictly from Chioggia, cut into thin slices.

4) Typical foods you need to try in Venice: Sarde in saor

It’s not a tourist favorite, I’m not going to lie, but it’s one of the darlings of the Venetians, and if you like fish: try it! It is prepared with lots, lots, lots of onions and sardines and can be a good option for those looking for something different and very tasty! The dish has a ‘little secret’ for its impeccable preparation: after it is ready, they keep it ‘marinating’ for a few days.

5) Typical foods you need to try in Venice: Moeche

For those who love seafood, this is a field day: the Moeche are green crabs found in the Laguna between Burano and Chioggia. The traditional Venetian recipe calls for the moeche to be floured and then fried, but before that, it must be pierced to let the water that accumulates inside it escape. It is very tasty and served with a little lemon, which brings the ideal acidity to taste your dish in a magnificent way!

6) Typical foods you need to try in Venice: Buttered Cod

Another dish much loved by Venetians: the famous buttered cod! It is served with polenta and has an unparalleled flavor! It is light, tasty, and melts in the mouth, as after preparation it turns into a kind of cream. This recipe is over 500 years old, and was created by a storm! I explain: in 1432, the merchant Piero Querini was sailing through the Arctic Circle and found the fish on the island of the Baltic Sea – today part of Norway. The locals ate this delicious and easily preserved fish, so Piero brought the fish to Venice and the rest is history!

Bonus: Shall we talk about drinks?

Did you know that Spritz was created in Venice? Well, the symbol drink of Italy was born in Venice and has a very curious history!

The Spritz has its origins during the Austrian domination of Lombardy-Veneto in the late 18th century, early 19th century. There were the Habsburg soldiers who, after work, went to explore Venice and began to discover its wines. They went to the famous Malvasie, which were old wineries that sold very high quality wines and very alcoholic, but it is worth remembering that Venetians have always been famous for having a great tolerance for alcohol. Without speaking a word of Italian, they would order the wine in their local language and ask for the drink to be ‘stretched’ with water to make it weaker, saying: “ein spritz” (the German verb spritzen means “to sprinkle”. ). So they started drinking white wine with a ‘spray’ of sparkling water and thus the first Spritz was born, who was Austro-Hungarian. To give you an idea, even today, in the Friuli Venezia Giulia region, if you order a Spritz, they will serve you exactly that: white wine with a touch of sparkling water.

In the rest of Italy, the drink went through some changes; the first of them happened around 1900, when the first Seltz water siphons became popular and became an alternative to sparkling water. However, the drink we know today was born only in 1920, when someone decided to make it a little more ‘bitter’, but there was no time for that to happen. Then, two versions of what we know today were born: the more “continental” Spritz, which appeared in Padua, with the notorious Aperol; and the typical “lagoon” with the Select, which is a typically Venetian drink produced by the Pilla brothers. The drink became popular throughout the country and, in 1970, it was included in the lists of the IBA (International Bartenders Association) under the name of “Venetian Spritz”. It is worth remembering that each city in Triveneto has small differences in the preparation of the drink: in Padua it is made with white sparkling wine, in Treviso with Prosecco, and in Venice no carbonated drinks: it is made with white wine. The drink variation can be made with Campari instead of Aperol, or with Martini, or even with Cynar.

Good to remember…

  • People, it’s good to remember that the Veneto region offers a multitude of dishes and drinks to taste. A tip I give: try everything you can! You will hardly regret it!

Gold tip

If you are in a city outside the Veneto region, avoid ordering typical dishes from there. This is because, as we have said several times in our posts, each region has its own typical dishes and they are VERY proud of it, and they may even feel offended if they receive a request for a dish that is not typical of the region where you are. In some restaurants, there is not even a choice of dishes from other regions – especially the more traditional restaurants – however, many places have already understood that globalization also includes gastronomy and, therefore, in their menus, they offer dishes from different Italian regions. 


Are you going to stay in Venice? So you can get our exclusive hotel tips!

Here you will find great and free tips to not get fooled when choosing your hotel in Italy.

Plus: read our tips and advices about the Venice neighborhoods and where to stay! Here you will find the perfect hotel for you and for your needs, respecting you budget! Also: booking at booking.com, you will help us to keep our blog and for free! No fees, no click baits, no fake news!

Hotels I recommend in the San Marco area

San Marco is the most famous neighborhoods of Venice and, at some times of the year, it is difficult to walk around, because the city is crowded.

If you want to save money a great option is to stay in some B&B or rent an apartment; click on the links below and get to know each one. If you like the suggestion, make your reservation and guarantee good prices;)

If you prefer a good hotel, I have some options for hotels that I really like, click on the links below and get to know each one. If you like the suggestion, make your reservation and guarantee good prices;)

Do you like luxury accommodations? Are you on your honeymoon or celebrating something special? Then see some luxury accommodation options in the best area of Venice.

Hotels I recommend in Castello Area

Castello is the largest of all the “sestieri” (neighborhoods) and has an incredible waterside for good walks, in addition to being full of cafes, bars and shops. They are not cheap places to stay, but it facilitates access to the most famous tourist spots and, with that, saves on transportation, as it is possible to do everything on foot!

If you want to save, a great option is the B&B or an apartment, click on the links below and get to know each one. If you like the suggestion, make your reservation and guarantee good prices

If you prefer a good hotel, I have some options for hotels that I really like, click on the links below and get to know each one. If you like the suggestion make your reservation and guarantee good prices;)

Hotels I recommend in Cannaregio or Dorsoduro Area

If you want something calmer, choose Cannaregio or Dorsoduro; in the latter, the nightlife is particularly active, ideal for lovers of busy bars and places to have good drinks!

If you want to save a great option is the B&B or an apartment, click on the links below and get to know each one. If you like the suggestion, make your reservation and guarantee good prices;)

If you prefer a good hotel, I have some options for hotels that I really like, click on the links below and get to know each one. If you like the suggestion, make your reservation and guarantee good prices

Hotels I recommend in the San Polo Area

San Polo is ideal if you want something comfortable, close to some sights, but more modest. I think this neighborhood is a great position so I recommend it a lot.

If you want to save a great option is the B&B or an apartment, click on the links below and get to know each one. If you like the suggestion, make your reservation and guarantee good prices

If you prefer a good hotel, I have some options for hotels that I really like, click on the links below and get to know each one. If you like the suggestion, make your reservation and guarantee good prices;)

Hotels I recommend in the Santa Croce Area

Santa Croce is home to the important bus station in Piazzale Roma, which makes it very easy to get off the beaten track, including going to Santa Lucia if you want to make a stopover.

If you want to save a great option is the B&B or an apartment, click on the links below and get to know each one. If you like the suggestion, make your reservation and guarantee good prices

If you prefer a good hotel, I have some options for hotels that I really like, click on the links below and get to know each one. If you like the suggestion, make your reservation and guarantee good prices;)

Don’t want to stay on the island? No problems! Search for Mestre, Campalto or Favaro Veneto, which are the mainland cities of Venice and offer excellent accommodation options. A little further from Piazzale Roma, about 20 minutes by water transport, they do not have magnificent views from the bedroom windows, but it is ideal for those who want to save on accommodation.

Tips

  • The tip to save A LOT is to book your hotel in advance.
  • As we also mentioned: beware of excess baggage! It is very complicated to get around with large volumes in Venice because of the bridges, stairs and narrow streets.

Watch this video and discover what to do in 10 days in Italy!!

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Conclusion

Typical foods you need to try in Venice! I repeat: try everything you can! Of course, if you’re a vegetarian, have any dietary restrictions or don’t like, for example, fish, don’t risk it, but if you’re the adventurous type: go for it! It will be a very interesting experience, I’m sure!

Are you insecure?

And if you feel insecure, have no time, and need help to organize your trip,  don’t hesitate to contact me!  I will love to help you make your dream trip to Italy come true. And how can I do that? Keep reading this post until the end and you will understand how we make your life and your trip much easier.

Did my post help you?  If so, be sure to post your comment below, but if you still have questions just send me a message I will answer you as soon as possible!



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