Meals on a budget
Throughout our other pages about eating out in Venice you’ll find information on restaurants, types of places where you can buy food and the typical extras you might expect to pay for. In this article I’ll suggest some good places where you can eat meals at particularly cheap prices.
Most restaurants I’ve featured on this page have subsequently either closed down (perhaps because they priced too low) or put up prices. Venice is so full of hungry tourists looking for bargains that anywhere good usually becomes so popular that the premises begin to charge more. So there is a cycle of new cheap eateries popping up, becoming popular, having their fame spread online, and then ceasing to be a cheap eaterie. While I’ll try to update this page with new discoveries, I’d strongly recommend checking restaurant websites/Google Maps for the latest opening times and reviews, and asking locally for tips when you’re in Venice.
Taverna del Campiello Remer
This is a picturesque restaurant-bar in a little hidden campiello (courtyard) near the Rialto Bridge. Recently it has set up a generous free buffet which can get hugely popular and is a great way to fill up in pleasant surroundings. Between 5:30pm and 7:30pm every day, bar prices are raised to 4 per drink – but once you’ve bought a glass of wine you can help yourself to the free buffet. Arranged on a little table over a carved stone well-head, the food consists of varied nibbles as well as big bowls of pasta and risotto. You take a plastic plate and help yourself; the food is excellent and frequently replenished. You can sit at the restaurant tables while you consume the buffet offerings. The only drawback is that food isn’t labelled, and vegetarians will find meat in many items, although I’ve managed to fill up on some great meat-free pasta dishes. The restaurant is small, mostly peopled by smart professionals and is dependent on the good manners of its visitors to keep it from becoming a free-for-all.
To find the restaurant, first find the church of San Giovanni Crisostomo near the Rialto. Campiello del Remer is down a little alley almost opposite the church, just past the news-stand and souvenir stall.
Another ‘happy hour’ buffet with a more studenty atmosphere is held at a bar called Orange in Campo Santa Margherita on Mondays, Tuesdays and Wednesdays.
Spizzico is an Italian fast-food chain (sample slogan: molto fast, very good). You can buy cheap slices of pizza, salad and desserts as well as chips and soft drinks. They offer various meal deals, and this is a quick and efficient way to refuel while sightseeing. The Venice branch is in Campo San Luca, handy for St. Mark’s and the Rialto. You can buy food to take away but given the Venetian authorities’ hostile attitude to those eating in public places, it’s a better idea to use the upstairs seating area. There is a Burger King counter in the same building.
There are more recommendations for good-value places to eat on our main restaurants page, which covers a range of establishments including pizzerias, which are usually the cheapest places to buy a filling meal.
> Our restaurant recommendations
> General advice on eating out in Venice
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