We noticed that you're using an unsupported browser. The TripAdvisor website may not display properly.We support the following browsers:
Windows: Internet Explorer, Mozilla Firefox, Google Chrome. Mac: Safari.

“Lunch with gondoliers”
Review of Da Mario

Da Mario
Ranked #1,050 of 1,490 Restaurants in Venice
Price range: $12 - $37
Cuisines: Italian
More restaurant details
Restaurant details
Good for: Local cuisine
Dining options: Dinner, Reservations
Neighborhood: San Marco
Description: Cucina da Mario is the typical venetian osteria. Familiar management since 60 years, great food (daily fresh, as there is not any freezer) in a very relaxed atmosphere. Live music every friday night.P.S. Typical Venetian Osteria means that you CAN'T find old bread, neither old olive oil to fry food. Of course NO food older than one day. Infact we're proud of the food we provide, but if you've got any issue with your meal, feel free to tell us. Cheers!
Reviewed May 18, 2013

The restaurant had at least 8 gondoliers inside having lunch together, so I told myself that since the local people was eating there, that place should be good or at least average. I don't have any complaint about food,service and the price paid. Nothing special, but also it was not terrible and the fish was fresh. On the average for Venice.

    • Value
    • Atmosphere
    • Service
    • Food
Thank Andrea D
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Write a ReviewReviews (231)
Traveler rating
Traveler type
Time of year

66 - 70 of 231 reviews

Reviewed May 14, 2013

I have never been let down by Lonely Planet but I have no idea why they recommended this restaurant. We arrived to be told we would have to wait 30 minutes - fine, as we didn't have a booking. We came back at the appointed time to be told there was NO fish... and this formed half of the menu. We decided it was late so decided to stay and find something else.... We then wanted to order some wine to be told they had run out of bottles of white wine so would we like the house? At €10 a litre it was drinkable... We wanted some bread and we got some little bruschetta as they had run out of bread... Did I mention they had no clean wine glasses so we had to drink out of beakers (they were glass...) The salmon (they found some) looked good but was badly presented. We wanted two bowls of salad and got one (guess how many we were charged for...) I had steak which was thin but perfectly cooked and tasty. Didn't come with anything so thank god I had ordered chips. The pasta dishes looked like something a 3 year old could cook - unappetising bowl of white pasta with a tomato 'sauce' (looked like passata).

It appears to be a family owned business which has no idea how to run a restaurant. No bread. No wine. No wine glasses. No fish... And it was only 9.30 on a Friday night!!!

There was tons of quirky pots and paintings - most of which were covered in grease.

Having said all of that we were entertained by a fabulous duo - they were great entertainment.

We didn't get kicked out despite being loud, hilarious with laughter, and them wanting to eat their staff meal.

Their dog appeared to run in and out of the kitchen and whilst I love dogs this was a turn off.

The waitress liked to have a laugh and it wasn't her fault that Mr Fawlty still ran this terrible restaurant and appears to be of the same era.

Only visit for a snack at lunch time. But at the prices you can find much better quality for the same price.

    • Value
    • Atmosphere
    • Service
    • Food
Thank Sarah C
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed April 29, 2013

The food here is absolutely dreadful, almost a scandalous tourist rip off.

- Enticed in by the menu, we were told at the table that half the menu wasn't available. No seafood. Even hot chocolate wasn't available.

- All that was available were fried or grilled meat dishes. We ordered for the whole table. No mention that they would be served alone on the plate.

- All that arrives is a miserly portion of fried meat on a plate, on its own. Absolutely dripping with fat, to the point that it's served on a piece of paper. Did I mention it was the wrong kind of meat?

- So we order chips (fries) to accompany our 12 Euro tiny piece of fried meat.

- This bit was truly amazing. They couldn't even cook a chip. What arrived was raw potato swimming in cooking oil, it obviously hadn't been hot enough to cook it. I have never been somewhere that didn't even know how to fry a chip. Not being able to is one thing, not even being able to recognize that they'd failed to cook a chip is another. How many years of chef experience do you need to remember what a chip looks like?

- Basically we were taken aback. This is the worst meal we've ever had, I don't think they had any kind of cook in there. If they haven't reached being able to fry food, I think we have every right to be fearful about them not knowing sufficient food hygiene skills as well.

And all of this wasn't cheap either. We actually had to go out and get food to actually eat lunch after being here.

No doubt they'll keep catching unbeware passing trade (like us), but for anyone reading the reviews (and read the other ones below), give this place a wide berth, you will have a much more enjoyable meal somewhere else in Venice.

    • Value
    • Atmosphere
    • Service
    • Food
3  Thank keesau
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed January 2, 2013

Fine food, Great atmosphere, Nice Service - Save room for the desert - ask for the specials - and you can find it on TWO streets.. It is fun looking for it.

Thank res5137
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed September 15, 2012

Our Lonely Planet travel guide recommended Da Mario, and they were spot on. When we walked in, we were immediately greeted and seated. There were probably a dozen tables, and the server (who we think was the owner) brought fabulous bread, and gave us two choices for every course. My husband and I both chose the gnocchi over the tagliatelli. This was the lightest, most delicious gnocchi we've ever had. I had the pomodoro sauce and he had the bolognese--both were excellent. For the main course, we both ordered the branzino, which arrived whole (glad my husband is a biologist and could dissect it for me:-). It was simply prepared, fresh and delicious. We also had very good salad and nice white wine. Overall, the meal was excellent and very reasonably priced. All of the food was fresh, local, and very well prepared. Eat dinner at Da Mario--you'll be glad you did!

Thank JoMich
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

Travelers who viewed Da Mario also viewed

Venice, City of Venice
City of Venice, Province of Venice
Venice, City of Venice

Been to Da Mario? Share your experiences!

Write a Review Add Photos & Videos

Owners: What's your side of the story?

Own or manage this property? Claim your listing for free to respond to reviews, update your profile and much more.

Claim Your Listing