Pushing the boundaries of fine dining, Bistrot de Venise is both an acclaimed restaurant and an artistic and cultural center, promoting the arts and research into historical Venetian cuisine and rare wines. Hosting regular discussions and meetings to explore poetry, art, and culinary history, Bistrot de Venise spotlights and innovates traditional Venetian cuisine. With exquisite décor and incredible food to match, it is easy to see why this restaurant is so celebrated. We talk to manager Sergio Fargiacomo to find out more about one of Venice’s most exciting restaurants.
What makes Bistrot de Venise a unique restaurant to enjoy a meal?
The unique combination of Venetian arts and culture meeting the culture of food and wine of the glorious past times of Venice Serenissima.
Does Bistrot de Venise have a signature dish you would recommend to our readers?
Old-fashioned duck with ‘Sauce Pevarada’ and wild apple and red onion pudding, a recipe from Bartolomeo Scappi, a famous 16th-century chef, or almond-crusted sturgeon in a black grape sauce with a yellow garlic and almond pudding, a dish invented by the chef Maestro Martino in the 15th century.
How would you describe your restaurant’s style of cooking?
Concretely Venetian – Italian cuisine with a touch of past Renaissance food culture; no fusion, no nouvelle cuisine.
Can you tell us more about the restaurant’s research into rare wines and historical Venetian cuisine?
It was a hard start 15 years ago, but also very simple because we are a group of very curious people. We decided to reexamine the deep roots of Venetian cuisine and its influences brought from the Middle East. We organized conferences and debates to discuss figures such as Cuoco Anonimo Veneziano (14th century) to Bartolomeo Scappi (16th century) and his ‘Opera’ masterpiece on Renaissance Italian cuisine, and to rediscover and reintroduce the ancient grapes of the Veneto region in collaboration with the Istituto Enologico di Conegliano.
Besides fine dining, Bistrot de Venise also hosts cultural events comprising figurative arts and poetry. What inspired this?
Bistrot de Venise was born in 1993 with the idea of coupling food and wine with art and culture, an interdisciplinary meeting point. We’re still doing the same and combining a classic fine restaurant with menus based on historical Venetian cuisine and poetry, arts such as painting and photography, and the history of Venice.
What can we expect from Bistrot de Venise in the future?
We are about to see our dear old Chef Mario Missese leave and be replaced by the very knowledgeable Chef Paolo Businaro. We expect to continue to improve and grow our global reputation.
Bistrot de Venise, Calle dei Fabbri, Sestiere San Marco, 4685, Venice, Italy, +39 (0)41 523 6651
Interview By Henry Oliver