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“An experience!” 5 of 5 stars
Review of Via Veneto

Via Veneto
3009 Main St, Santa Monica, CA 90405-5317
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Ranked #128 of 573 Restaurants in Santa Monica
Price range: $20 - $40
Cuisines: Italian
More restaurant details
Restaurant details
Good for: Romance
Dining options: Reservations
Dining style: Fine Dining
Cross street: Pier Ave. & Marine St.
Chicago, Illinois
Top Contributor
113 reviews 113 reviews
74 restaurant reviews
Reviews in 38 cities Reviews in 38 cities
42 helpful votes 42 helpful votes
“An experience!”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed April 23, 2013

Were it not for the company dime, I probably wouldn't dine here, but it was a gastronomic delight! Table for 7, and we decided to go "family style." The server had so much to tell us about the specials, that I wondered why they even have a menu. We started with cheese, olive, grape and date platters: delectable; red and white wines were served; then we were served a tasting of homemade raviolis: pumpkin, lobster, asparagus. We all thought the pumpkin was the unexpected winner. For entrée, two of us had the grilled brazino. Others had pasta, lamb, steak--I cleaned my plate. The portions were also well measured (not skimpy) considering what we'd already eaten. For dessert, we couldn't decide on the gelato flavors so we ordered all six, as well as the amaretto dessert, tiramisu and another I can't remember. We all dug into them. I was satisfied, not stuffed. Ambiance and service were superb. Fabulous dinner!

  • Visited April 2013
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Atmosphere
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
    • 5 of 5 stars Food
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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84 reviews from our community

Visitor rating
Rating summary
Date | Rating
  • English first
  • French first
  • Italian first
  • Norwegian first
  • Portuguese first
  • Any
English first
Senior Reviewer
8 reviews 8 reviews
3 restaurant reviews
Reviews in 6 cities Reviews in 6 cities
2 helpful votes 2 helpful votes
“True Italian food!”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed April 7, 2013 via mobile

Being Italian I don't usually eat in Italian restaurants when abroad as I don't like overcooked, made to please other tastes pasta; made an exception while on business trip in LA as I was visiting Santa Monica and went there with two collegues: what a pleasant surprise.

A friendly and professional waiter brought to the table warm bread and an olive oil from South Italy that was indeed true olive oil.

Choosing fro the menu wasn't easy because of the tempting choices, the waiter suggested spaghetti with razor clams and bottarga which is a plate from the region I am from and decided to give it a chance...excellent, you can taste the sea.

After that I was easily convinced to try spaghetti with sea urchins and well, another pleasant surprise because of the delicate taste.

Good selection of wine, some more some less pricey.

Overall good and original restaurant, given the peculiarity of the dishes (razor clams and sea urchins aren't common to find on menus), nice and warm atmosphere at a reasonable price (we ordered one bottle of mid price red wine and spent 90$ per person).

Will definetely reccomend.

  • Visited April 2013
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Atmosphere
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
    • 5 of 5 stars Food
Was this review helpful? Yes 1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Atlanta, GA
Senior Contributor
49 reviews 49 reviews
13 restaurant reviews
Reviews in 34 cities Reviews in 34 cities
31 helpful votes 31 helpful votes
“Crazy expensive, ok food, nothing special.”
2 of 5 stars Reviewed April 4, 2013

We just had dinner there based on our hotel's concierge recommendation. It was the most unreasonably expensive restaurant that I have ever been to and no wonder 2/3 of the restaurant was empty. We ordered one of the cheapest bottle of wine($98) on the menu and had a starter and a main dish and shared a desert and the tab was $170 per person!! The food was just ok, the service was just ok, the location and ambiance was just ok but the prices ????!!!!! And then they had the nerve to charge us $5.50 for valet parking(where do they come up with $5.50? I guess so that you give them 10 and tell them to keep the change!!!) !! I am so disappointed with the concierge of Fairmont Hotel(that would be another review) that I may just simply never stay there again. The only thing that I can think of is that they must have received a kick back for recommending this place. They cut their prices in half and it may be worth a visit.

  • Visited April 2013
    • 1 of 5 stars Value
    • 3 of 5 stars Atmosphere
    • 3 of 5 stars Service
    • 4 of 5 stars Food
Was this review helpful? Yes 3
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Fabrizio B, Owner at Via Veneto, responded to this review, April 7, 2013
Hello everybody,
as the "Online Restaurant review Portals" are becoming more and more the wild west where everybody can write whatever they like, today I decided to answer, for the first time to one of the contributor's comment. Eveyibody is entitled to their opinion, I'm not here to defend my establishment, I'm here against all the contributors that posts inaccurate, misleading, false information.

I understand clearly that we as a public establishment (restaurant) can't make everybody happy. Food, service, ambiance, decor is pretty much like any form of art, music, entertainment, painting, photography etc.
There are people that love certain things an people that loves other things.
People that like their steak raw and people that like their steak well done, people that likes very attentive over the top service and people that might find that too stiffy and uncomfortable.
There's no right or wrong, at the end it come down to personal taste, it comes down to what each one of you would like to experience when they go out.
A bit like the movie "Ratatouille" where a dinner experience takes each one of us to different places.

I will go step by step to "Errata Corrige" the inaccurate Information that Mr.ive0travel posted.

1) Our place is a very small and intimate restaurant about 50 seats, that night we where full as usual, we did about two services, NOT 2/3 empty.
2) Our cheapest bottle of wine is $56, the wine Mr. Ivet0travel had it's called "Campaccio Terra Bianca" at $98 a bottle which happens to be a very good bottle of wine and he ordered 2 bottles of the same wine that night NOT ONE.
3) They had one starter and one main course each, they where 6 guests, and only one had pasta as main course, the rest (5) had Veal chops, fresh fish, and the most expensive steak on the menu being a Bone-In Kansas City Steak with black truffle, also as starter they had Prime beef carpaccio with Black Truffle. (Not the most economical items on the market)
4) They had 4 desserts NOT 1
5) If the food was just ok like he says, why he gave us 4 out of 5 on food??
6) $5.50 for valet parking…I think we have the cheapest valet parking fees in the whole Los Angeles County, not mentioning the fact that VIA VENETO is not related to the Valet Parking company and no portion of that $5.50 goes to us.
7) The price per person is $90.16 NOT $170……..$170 includes: $196 in wine, $70 in Taxes, and $160 in Gratuity that Mr. Ive0travel left at his discretion.

As you can see the information posted by Mr. Ive0travel is FALSE.
I have a copy of the receipt for any of you that would like to have it mailed to just to prove that the information i wrote are founded and accurate.

Thank you.
The Owner of VIA VENETO restaurant
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Marina del Rey, California
Top Contributor
58 reviews 58 reviews
42 restaurant reviews
Reviews in 18 cities Reviews in 18 cities
29 helpful votes 29 helpful votes
3 of 5 stars Reviewed February 27, 2013

This palce is very cute but........take lots of cash!!! 2 people 3 appetizer between us and 2 house reds.......$110, ok that doesn't sound crazy but the dishes where so small I had to stop and get a burger on the way home. we split a ravioli dis....it was VERY good, but I have been it the restaurant biz for 36 years and there was about $2.00 in actual food cost......I wish I could get those sorts of margins....wont go back!

  • Visited February 2013
    • 1 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Atmosphere
    • 3 of 5 stars Service
    • 4 of 5 stars Food
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Top Contributor
111 reviews 111 reviews
70 restaurant reviews
Reviews in 44 cities Reviews in 44 cities
85 helpful votes 85 helpful votes
“Don't expect to bring your favorite wine to family dinner”
4 of 5 stars Reviewed February 9, 2013 via mobile

Enjoyed dinner with 11 friends upstairs. Oops we were no advised the owner will not allow corkage upstairs. There goes the meal. Big mistake, given the caliber of foodies at the table. Otherwise food was good not great

    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 3 of 5 stars Atmosphere
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
    • 3 of 5 stars Food
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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