Botteghe ai Promessi Sposi

Fine and festive. Young but not too; warm, intimate yet lively…and, the food is delicious. The revised and rejuvenated Promessi Sposi: try it, you’ll like it.

Remember Spritz the cat? Well, this is Spritz’s owner’s place, my former vicino and across-the-hall, Tom Waits-loving neighbor, Claudio. He joined forces with Nicola and Cristiano just over a year ago and the three of them have managed to open a wonderful bàcaro cum trattoria, that could be just the thing for you’re up for either a cichetto and an ombra, or a satisfying meal.

I would say I was prejudiced, since Claudio was a perfect neighbor with a great cat, but actually it’s just the opposite. I know how passionate he is about cooking, but what if I’d gone to his new place and found it mediocre, what then? Maybe that’s why it took me six months to get there, but thankfully I didn’t have to face that touchy situation, because the meal my friend and I had was delightful. Delicious. Delectable. And more.

ravioli_rapi_rossi.jpgThe hand-written menu was a good sign; it meant that the evening’s dishes were based only on what quality ingredients were available. (This was also confirmed during a after-meal discussion between Claudio and my friend about where to obtain decent meat at an honest price; he has settled on a macellaio di fiducia from the Piedmont, but Federica promised to e-mail him about another butcher he might like to try, just up the road in Mogliano.)

We went for the beef tartare and fresh grilled canestrelli; the clam-lettes were sumptuous and the tartare was topped with bean sprouts and served with ceramic spoonfuls of minced red online, capers, mustard, and paprika, which when mixed together with bit of olive oil was equally sumptuous. Fede opted for the fegato alla Veneziano and pronounced it excellent, I went for the ravioli stuffed with saffroned rapi rossi (red turnips) topped with grated ricotta salata. Heaven.

The nice thing about the new Sposi is that it’s the best of many worlds: you can cichettare in the midst of a lively crowd, or sit down one room over (or in the garden in the summer) for a more tranquil ambience, and all at an ottimo rapporto qualità – prezzo: at a fair price for a quality meal.

Please tell Claudio to tell give Spritz my love – I do miss that big, orange guy.

  • Bottega ai Promessi Sposi
  • Calle de l’Oca 4367
  • Cannaregio, just off Campo Santi Apostoli
  • tel: 041 241 2747
  • open from 11.30 to 15 and nightly 18 to 23; closed Wednesday lunch.
  • €€

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