Burano is about a 40 minute water bus ride from Venice – a nice trip which you can make with your bus pass. The restaurant has an on- form to fill in for reservations but never got back to us so we had the hotel desk clerk call and he secured a spot for us when they first open. He said they are crazy busy and judging by the crowd we saw arrive after us, he is right. Burano is a fun place to walk around before or after your visit, so plan some extra time to visit shops and enjoy the colorful buildings.
The restaurant is relatively good-sized with elegant service, nice linens but the waitstaff aren’t as fluent in English as some others. When we asked about the origination of the name, Black Cat, he told us it was originally a bar and taken over by the Fascists during the war but throughout has stayed in the family. We never could understand the reason for the name black cat other than that black cats might wander by (this was where the language barrier happened) but there are pictures and objects of black cats around the dining room and the delightful dishes all have a small black cat.
They started us with a complimentary Prosecco while we perused the menu and then after ordering presented us with the amuse of creamy white polenta and schie – the tiny shrimp that are common in this area. The polenta was perfectly cooked and remained runny and creamy to mix with the delicate shrimp. The risotto has to be ordered for at least 2 and is made with Gó fish, another Venice standard – a small ugly fish. However in this dish it was terrific! Again the risotto was cooked perfectly and came out piping hot and creamy with an aroma of chicken
broth simmering. A lovely but large dish. The fish, Branzino (sea bass that was in season in the lagoon) and was brought to the table whole and de-boned and plated in front of us. The waiter did a very meticulous and nice job but even the extra olive oil was not enough to make the fish moist in the thinner parts. Mild tasting but not something to order again. We ordered the cooked vegetable of the day which was supposed to be spinach but turned out to be a type of chicory which was a delightful surprise. It was velvety without a hint of bitterness. We also had the fried potatoes which were also very good and almost tasted as if they had been fried in olive oil. For dessert I tried their housemate tiramisu which was rich, chocolatey and basically a bowl licker. My husband had the s-shaped cookies that are dunked in sweet wine before eating. The cookies were hard and buttery and made a good absorber of the sweet wine and I got a glass of sweet wine out of it too. A great ending for a very nice meal.
2 thoughts on “Trattoria al Gatto Nero da Ruggero, Venice, 10/23/15”
Loved everything about this restaurant. Extraordinary. Delicious. Excellent service. WHERE can I order the dinnerware with the lovely houses trim?
Thanks for your comment! Wish I knew! It was wonderful! Can’t wait to be able to get back to Italy!