I’d mentally bookmarked Venissa from our previous visit in 2017 when we’d stopped off there for a glass of wine before catching the vaparetto back to Venice proper. The restaurant is part of a family-owned complex that includes a vineyard, wine-lodge and accommodation on the quiet little island of Mazzorbo, accessible by bridge from the tourist trap that is Burano.
The restaurant is set in the peaceful vineyard with the odd snaffle of tourists wandering by. By having two glass walls and one mosquito-netted it feels as though you’re dining outdoors without the attendant insects that usually go with that kind of thing.
So the setting is idyllic – what about the food? Much of it comes from the estate’s own land and so the emphasis is on fresh, local produce. For lunch they offer three set menus of 5, 7 or 10 courses. We went for the shortest (and least expensive – this kind of luxurious dining doesn’t come cheap), adding on the matching wines option.
The food was imaginative and delicious – sometimes quirky (a chard taco) and sometimes classic Italian (a tomato and mint ravioli-style pasta). The highlight for both of us on the food side of things was a seabass fillet in a rich squid ink sauce. And it wasn’t just a simple five courses, included were five varieties of amuses bouches and a delicious lime sorbet palette cleanser before the dessert of a millefeuil.
The wines were equally good, starting off with the Venissa’s own white, only 4,000 bottles of which are produced each year. Best of all was a light Nebiolo which reminded me of an Oregon red I once had at Covent Garden and have failed to rediscover since.
The service was excellent, as you’d expect, unhurried but attentive. We dropped a lot of cash, though they gave me a grappa with my coffee gratis, but we did spend a good three hours there. It’s hard to put a price on total relaxation but I definitely know the value of it.
To see where else I’ve eaten go to the GoogleMap …
Blue Badge guide to London and academic specialising in early twentieth century history. Blogging on history, academia, and food and culture in the capital (and occasionally elsewhere).