To experience the most authentic Venice, you should definitely pay a visit to the Rialto Market, Venice’s most popular one, built, back in the 11th century, where the city’s first inhabited core was located. One of the oldest markets of the Lagoon, it’s an explosion of colors, flavors, and folklore where the top chefs in town mix with locals in order to get the best daily fresh ingredients for their dishes.
The name, originally Rivo Alto, comes from the characteristics of the ground in the area, more elevated and solid compared to that of other islands, making it more suitable for construction.
The Market’s folklore goes “on stage” in the early hours of each morning (from Monday to Saturday): a crossroads of people who do the shopping and chat the day away enjoying an aperitif in one of the picturesque traditional bacari (wine bars) that surrounds the stalls.
Among the many characters that animate the Market, one of the most popular is certainly Giovanni d’Este, owner of the famous Osteria I Rusteghi, who today continues the gourmand family heritage. His grandfather was, in fact, the first to import wines from southern Italy to Venice, whilst his parents, Manuela and Roberto, were pioneers of the informal gourmet eateries concept.
From them, Giovanni learned many things, including the philosophy of offering his customers high-quality dishes prepared with top ingredients such as artisanal cheeses & cured meats, fresh fish as well as many gastronomic rarities accompanied by great wines from all over the world.
Let Giovanni guide you through the picturesque stalls of the Market, learning how to buy the best fresh, local fish, before ending up in a bacaro for a traditional aperitif. Giovanni will then walk you back to his osteria, I Rusteghi, and cook a gourmet meal for you to be enjoyed al fresco with a nice glass of wine!