Taverna San Trovaso – a stone’s throw from the Accademia vaporetto stop – is one of those invaluable restaurants where you know you will always get a good meal. It may not be flashy, but it will be good, and the service will be efficient and friendly.
That is, if you can get a table, because there is almost always a queue – a mixture of locals of all ages, and tourists. Luckily the place is a bit of a Tardis: it looks tiny from the outside but it extends inside on two levels, to create one of Venice’s larger restaurants. So unless it’s all the way out the door, the queue can move pretty fast.
The menu is classic Italian with the addition of Venetian specialities such as fegato alla Veneziana, the great dish of thin, tender slivers of calves’ liver cooked with plenty of onions and served with polenta.
Prices are keen, with zuppa di verdura at €5.50 – this is one of my staples, and a great way of testing a restaurant (when good it can be sublime, when poor it’s still at least edible: here it’s good but not great). Prosciuto crudo is very good at €6.50, and pasta is also terrific value (around €6). On this recent visit we checked out the classic spaghetti aglio, olio, pepperoncino (garlic, olive oil and chilli) and rigatoni San Trovaso, both of which were excellent.
There are plenty of meat and fish options for secondi, all as reasonably priced as the pasta, which helps to explain the queues. House wine is €8 per litre and perfectly drinkable, so it’s not at all difficult to come out satisfied and have paid less than €40 for two.