Venice – Cicchetti and the pub crawl experience

Venice - Cicchetto and the pub crawl experience

An attractive display of Cicchetti

Venice – Cicchetti and the pub crawl experience

Venice and enjoying its local food through pub crawls is definitely a must do in the later afternoon or happy hour time frame. Right when your ready to take a break from a full day of sightseeing, it’s nice to have glass of local wine and snack on some small bites or Cicchetti as they are called. Like typical Venetians, it’s a fun experience visiting a favorite bacari or bar and enjoying conversation with friends and visitors alike. It’s a convivial atmosphere and fun tasting the various Cicchetti being offered at each bar along with a nice local glass of “ombra” (wine). Ombra by Venetian standards are local inexpensive wines by the glass. You can have an affordable and filling dining experience in Venice by just visiting a few bacari on your pub crawl and sampling some local Cicchetti specialties.


Venice - Cicchetto and the pub crawl experience

Ah yummy fresh seafood


Each bar has its specialty, but the most common dishes served around Venice includes:

Polpette, spicy fried meatballs, marinated seafood served with polenta

Marinated seafood or raw sashimi style fish

Sauteed vegetables or stuffed vegetables

Fried potato and ham combinations

Fried olives

Small crostini topped with proscuitto, sauteed vegetables or seafood. Try the Venetian specialty called bacala mantecato – dried salt cod mixed with virgin olive oil into a creamy spread

Fried seafood mixes are very popular bar food that you can eat at the bar or take with you from street vendors selling from the bar, take-out style.

Venice - Cicchetto and the pub crawl experience

Fried seafood mixed to go



The types of Cicchetti can almost outnumber the many bridges through Venice so do pace yourself with all the offerings. Typical prices of Cicchetti range from 1-3 euro per piece to 10 euro for a mixed fried seafood platter. So for under 15 Euro including wine, you can almost have a complete meal sampling a variety of local Venetian specialties.





There are even popular bacari and Cicchetti tours available with a guide taking you to some of the off the beaten path locations. The guides love to share some great stories and local folklore while offering Cicchetti tastings and wine to a variety of bacari that you walk to in a tour. There are many tours available which you can easily review on sites like Yelp and Tripadvisor. Take your time reading about the tours and book them ahead of time, because they are smaller and limit the number of guests per tour. If you are even more adventurous, you can create your own itinerary and sampling by checking out these traditional and popular bars like the ones listed in this food guide.


 I’m taking my mixed sea food plate to go!

Venice - Cicchetto and the pub crawl experience

Digging into the Fried seafood


When you do visit Venice and your exhausted from a day of looking at art, architecture and attractions, take some time early in the afternoon to enjoy a pub crawl experience Venetian style with Cicchetti!

If you loved reading this post on Venice, please check out some of my posts below:

Evening magic and the romance of Venice

Venice – ten random thoughts, advice and quirky observations

Venice – the small details

Venice – highlights in black and white


If you did enjoy the post, please do share it with any of the social media buttons below – thanks so much for visiting!


19 Responses to Venice – Cicchetti and the pub crawl experience

  1. Marcia March 11, 2014 at 4:44 pm #

    Thanks for linking up this week, Noel!
    I’m making a note of this for when I make it to Venice.

  2. eileen @ FamiliesGo! March 9, 2014 at 2:24 pm #

    We did just such a wine-bar crawl through venice. It was great fun and a good way to explore the city’s nooks and crannies. In 1 bar we happened upon a party where the attendees were happy to share their trays of (Very good) risotto with us. We never got to dinner.

  3. Marisol@TravelingSolemates March 9, 2014 at 6:07 am #

    Hi Noel, It has been many moons ago and much younger when I was in Venice. Although I enjoyed many glasses of ombre I didn’t do a pub crawl to try those mouth watering Cicchetti. I’d love to return with my husband. And those Cicchetti will make it easy to seduce him to visit the city. Loved you photo. Looked like you really enjoyed your Cicchetti moment.

  4. Samantha @mytanfeet March 7, 2014 at 3:42 pm #

    Yum!! Fried seafood! Gosh all of that looks good!

  5. Marcia March 7, 2014 at 5:30 am #

    I love that you have the option to take it to go. Lovely!

  6. Michele {Malaysian Meanders} March 6, 2014 at 7:08 pm #

    A pub crawl AND Venice all rolled into one sounds like a fantastic night out. That fried seafood in a cone looks scrumptious.

  7. budget jan March 6, 2014 at 5:07 pm #

    Hi Noel, I had never heard of Cicchetti before your post, only tapas and meze’s. 🙂

    • Noel March 6, 2014 at 5:24 pm #

      That’s what they call it in Venice, everywhere else around Italia they call it Antipasti

      • budget jan March 9, 2014 at 5:00 pm #

        Ah strictly a Venetian word. I like it.

  8. Tales Told From The Road March 6, 2014 at 3:27 pm #

    Alas, one thing I didn’t get around to doing when I was in Venice.

  9. travelnwrite March 6, 2014 at 10:41 am #

    We far prefer pub grub and pub crawls to fancy dining; Venice met our every casual dining wish. . .you’ve caught the essence of the experience in this post!

  10. Anne March 6, 2014 at 8:49 am #

    My favorite thing about Venice! I love me some Spritz!

  11. Corinne March 6, 2014 at 8:19 am #

    Learn something new everyday…and usually have to add it to my list. Thanks, Noel! I love your food shots!

  12. Leigh March 6, 2014 at 6:12 am #

    I have never heard of cicchetti but I like what I just read. That late afternoon break to sit down with a glass of wine, good food & conversation is so civilized.

    • Noel March 6, 2014 at 7:31 am #

      It’s the same thing as Antipasti but in Venice everyone goes to a local bacari to savor each bars specialty and usually what is sourced that day!

  13. Jackie March 6, 2014 at 6:05 am #

    Ah Venice! Loved it.

  14. muzachan March 5, 2014 at 8:28 pm #

    Yummy! 🙂


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