When in Venice, you must eat like a Venetian, and fritto misto de mare (mixed fried seafood) is one of the region’s most famous specialities.
We had the opportunity to sample this dish and other regional favorites at Antica Sacrestia. This is an absolute gem of a restaurant, tucked along a quiet alley in the heart of Venice.
Even in the midst of a June tourist boom, we had the place all to ourselves. The quiet restaurant, which opens to the canals from the dining room, serves up authentic Italian seafood specialties.
Owner Giuseppe Calliandro serves up his traditional Venetian cuisine in a historic building that dates back to the 1500s. In 1581, it belonged to the Briani family, who were one of Venice’s nobles and members of the Major Council of the Serenissima. You can just feel the history in this place!
Our party of 13 had the dining room to ourselves as we watched the rainfall of a summer monsoon drop lightly into the canals from the open-air dining room.
Our server brought out a medley of delicious dishes to share — ranging from a delightful Venetian fritto misto with fresh lemon wedges, to a seafood antipasto that included prawns, octopus and other delights.
Several people in our group ordered the menu del giorno, which included a choice of lasagne, spaghetti or vegetable soups as the first course, followed by a grilled pork chop, mixed fried fish or veal escalope with cheeses as the second course. Vegetables and dessert round out the menu for 28 euros.
The restaurant also has an incredible pizza selection, with 60 different types to choose from! Our waiter recommended the Parmigiana pizza, a delightful mix of pomodoro, mozzarella, melanzana (roasted eggplant) and parmigiano cheese. At just 13 euros for a large pizza, it was a steal!
Even though we were stuffed, we finished up with their signature tiramisu — which was probably the best I’ve ever tried.
Thanks to Deshawn and Lele Dickinson of Pacngo.net who planned and organized this trip. It was a the vacation of a lifetime!
Ristorante Antica Sacrestia: Calle de la Corona, 4463, 30122 Venezia VE, Italy. +39 041 523 0749
Following is my recipe for Venetian calamari fritti with fresh lemon wedges, inspired by our visit to Antica Sacrestia. You can make it a fritto misto recipe by adding your favorite seafood, such as shrimp or smelt. Hope you enjoy it!
Venetian Fritto MistoRecipe by Jason Hill – CookingSessions.com
- 1 pound squid cleaned and cut into rings (or your favorite seafood)
- 1 cup milk
- 1 egg
- 1/3 cup chopped basil or Italian parsley
- 2 cups all-purpose flour
- 1/2 tablespoon paprika
- 1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
- Canola oil for frying
- Lemon wedges for serving
- Whisk together the milk, egg and basil or parsley. Add squid rings (and other seafood if using) and chill in the refrigerator for 20 minutes.
- Whisk flour, paprika and garlic powder in a shallow casserole dish. Season with salt and pepper.
- Preheat deep fryer to 375 F.
- Remove squid from milk mixture and toss lightly in the seasoned flour.
- Fry until golden brown, about 3 minutes. Drain on paper towels and serve with fresh cut lemon wedges.