Osteria Al Portego, Venice, 2/21/18

exterior
exterior

Al Portego is a tiny little place with 2 portions.  One half is where you stand and eat cichetti and the other part is filled with 8 pretty small tables that have table service.  If you want one of these tables a reservation is a must as the locals appeared to like this one – with good reason.  They seems ready to push the tables and chairs around into different configurations.  We originally were told that we could get a reservation if we were willing to sit with another couple but when we got there tables had moved and we had our own table.  The tables have a chalkboard menu of options which get erased when they run out.  Our great server was most helpful as well as spoke good English.  Lighting is dim with darkened windows and background music was possibly overflow from the kitchen, but the ambiance was just fine.  Cozy and casual, this is a slow food place not to miss.  

Exterior
Exterior
Their lantern
Their lantern
interior
interior
interior
interior
pots decorate the ceiling
pots decorate the ceiling
Frankie played on the placemats
Frankie played on the placemats

 

The bread basket is a forgettable part as it’s mostly dry, but maybe this was due to being on the tail end of lunch.  Either way you don’t need filler as the plates are all amply filled.

bread basket
bread basket
wine front
wine
side label
side label
wine's by the glass
wines by the glass and bottle
wines
wines by the glass
chalkboard menu
chalkboard menu
Frankie explored
Frankie explored

 

The sauteed clams were served with a grenolade sauce. They were very small clams but really soaked up the parsley, garlic and oil.  Here the dry bread came in handy to soak up tasty bits of this broth.  The clams were quite tender and could just suck off into your mouth when sipping the broth.  It was a really tasty dish that was easily large enough to share for 2.

Saltata di Bevarasse con Salsa Gremolade: clams
Saltata di Bevarasse con Salsa Gremolade: clams
closer
closer
Frankie surveyed the empty shells
Frankie surveyed the empty shells

 

A pappardelle pasta was served with shrimp and broccoli rabe.  The small shrimp were only lightly cooked and quite tender.  The wider noodle worked well with incorporating the shrimp into the dish and they were cooked a lovely al dente.  The slightly bitter green added a good contrast to the sweetness of the sweet shrimp.  It was delicious.

Pappardelle con Mazzancolle ecime de rapa: Pappardelle pasta with shrimp and broccoli rabé
Pappardelle con Mazzancolle e cime di rapa: Pappardelle pasta with shrimp and broccoli rabé
closer
closer
Frankie and the wine
Frankie and the wine

 

The frito misto included both seafood and vegetables.  It was all nicely crisp and not too greasy.  There were shrimp, fish, baby squid, tuna, potatoes, onions and zuchinni that I took note of.  It was a great assortment and all was really fresh tasting.  I would order it again, pretty much like I’d re-order anything we had.

Fritura Mista di Pesce
Fritura Mista di Pesce
closer
closer
closer
closer

 

We really didn’t feel like dessert afterwards but our fun server Veronica was nice enough to bring us a couple cookies to enjoy a sweet finish.

final cookies
final cookies
Chicetti
Cichetti counters
interior
interior
old photo of the city
old photo of the city
Veronica and Frankie
Friendly and helpful server, Veronica and Frankie

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