Friends had recommended Hostaria Osottoosopra to us and finally we were going to check this place out for a very late lunch. Tripadvisor (#26 of 1,323 Restaurants in Venice, certificate of excellence) seemed to agree with our friends’ opinion. The slightly odd-looking name is pidgeon Italian for “Below and Above,” referring to the two floors.
Osottoosopra is just across the Canale Grande from Palazzina Grassi (even though a fair walking distance, unless you hop on a boat), where we had enjoyed brunch the previous day (blog post here). This is where the three neighbourhoods of San Marco, San Polo, and Dorsoduro touch. It is one of our favourite parts of Venice. Despite the physical proximity to San Marco you might find yourself walking along canals and down crooked alleyways for several minutes without spotting other human beings. Quite the opposite of super-busy San Marco. There are other quiet areas such as large parts of Cannaregio, where we had been taking part in a rowing lesson two days ago (blog post here), but the area around Osottoosopra is much more beautiful.
Due to the time of day, most other guests had already finished their meals and there was only one other couple dining on the ground floor where we were seated. The Moldovan waiter was very quick and friendly and a bit of a joker, entertaining us with an anecdote here and there.
Ms B’s starter of three Venetian tapas (“cicchetti”) for €14 was perhaps not a stunner in terms of looks, but all of the tapas were very tasty. My favourite was the octopus Venetian style, Ms B preferred the codfish puree. The pickled sardines added some welcome acidity.
My €16 beef carpaccio looked to die for and still easily over-delivered on all ends. Definitely one of the best five beef carpaccios I’ve ever had. And such a gigantic portion.
Shortly after we had finished our starters the mains arrived. Ms B’s fish of the day for €18 turned out to be a couple of delightful sea bream fillets. My Seppie al nero alla Veneziana (cuttlefish with ink and polenta) for €16 looked extremely rustic and perhaps not perfectly easy on everyone’s eye, but the flavours and textures were just right. I’ll almost certainly order the same two dishes again when we return during our next visit to Venice. The cheese cake and tiramisu (each €6) were state of the art. 5 out of 5 in our book.
For some more restaurant reviews, feel welcome to have a look at our posts about the Robot Restaurant, Tokyo, Gruvelageret near the North Pole, Lafleur, Frankfurt, and The Porch House, Stow-on-the-Wold.