Oliva Nera (Black Olive) is two charmingly small osteria, side by side, run by our Venetian friends Dino and his wife Isabella. They are near the Ponte dei Greci in the Castello neighborhood, not far from Piazza San Marco. Dino will greet you with warmth, take your order with patience, and try to fit everyone in with a smile. The fair priced menu features classic Venetian disches such as sarde in soar (lightly fried sardines and onions marinated in vinegar), baccalà mantecato (creamed air-dried cod), stuffed fried zucchini flowers, bigoli in salsa (spaghetti with anchovies and onions), and variously prepared local fish and squid. There is always a vegetarian antipasto and few meat and fowl entrees (secondi) to choose from. Dino will help you select a nice bottle from the list of country-wide wines.
Reservations are highly recommended due to size. But if you find yourself out and about without your cell phone, drop by very early in the evening (7:00 pm) or after the concert: Dino and Isabella might squeeze you in, with a smile!