RESTAURANT LISTING EXCERPT
A sample restaurant listing - Locanda Montin
Moderate to Expensive
Open: Thursday - Tuesday, lunch and dinner
(except Tuesday, lunch only)
Closed: Tuesday evening and Wednesday
Credit cards: yes
Vaporetto: Ca' Rezzonico
To get there: From Ca' Rezzonico; walk straight back to Campo San Barnaba; go left through the arches and over the bridge. Turn right; the canal will be on your right and buildings on your left. At next bridge turn left; you do not cross bridge, but you do have to go up one or two steps. Again the canal will be on your right and buildings on left; the restaurant is straight ahead.
This is a restaurant with a dual personality. The room's walls are lined with dozens of paintings and drawings, gifts from grateful artists who have been fed, and occasionally housed, by the owners. Fill the long wooden tables with people, and you get a convivial, noisy and often smoky trattoria. The garden has a different atmosphere. Lined with flowering plants, covered in leaves and filled with bird song, the ambience is gentle, leisurely and languorous even when white-jacketed waiters are racing back and forth with platters of food and every table is taken.
New menus are printed frequently; be sure to check out the ever-changing designs on their backs. Appetizers include standards such as prosciutto e melone, excellent pâtés, cold seafood antipasti, occasionally a tuna carpaccio. Primi range from the standard pasta dishes such as spaghetti with ragu to homemade tortelloni and an assortment of soups such as pasta e fagiole and zuppa di verdura. The tortelloni are invariably rich and imaginative dishes; the fillings may include radicchio, pumpkin and ground nuts. They are usually generous enough to serve as an entree. The secondi also include standard veal and fish dishes, but always feature at least one plate containing beef and often something unusual on Venetian menus such as turkey or duck seasoned with pomegranate. If the San Pietro con pomodoro e cippoline is available, try it; the fish is in succulent chunks, lightly browned on the outside, firm, moist and sweet on the inside, with a sauce of onions combined with tomatoes, and a scattering of fennel leaves.
Desserts are often tempting here too. The Antinori Vin Santo with esse di Buranelle is an elegant finish to any dinner, but the pear torte captures the essence of pear, and for those who like to indulge there are plenty of rich and gooey treats covered in whipped cream or soaked in liqueurs.
The house wine is excellent and the wine list extensive and varied. Because the Locanda Montin is also a small inn, the restaurant is often open on holidays when other places close.