You’re bound to dine at restaurants near Doge’s Palace (aka Palazzo Ducale) when you’re sightseeing in La Serenissima. The Doge’s Palace merits a lengthy visit to its soaring arches and gilded interior. St. Mark’s Square is so magnificent you’ll want to linger. But there’s a risk that you’ll pay over the odds for mediocre food nearby. Look to this guide instead and you’ll find a range of delicious cuisine within walking distance of the Doge’s Palace.
Cantina Canaletto: best for authentic Italian cuisine
Pasta, pizza, fish, and seafood – $$$
You might expect a restaurant referencing Venice’s most famous painter to be squarely aimed at holidaymakers. But this is a stylish, architect-designed, timber-lined space housing an eatery founded 40 years ago. It’s more tourist-friendly than tourist trap.
There’s a large menu of Italian cuisine, including plenty of fish and seafood. The dishes here are homemade and use local produce where possible. Vegetarian and gluten-free options are here, too. Whatever you choose, don’t miss Cantina Canaletto’s own Limoncello.
This hidden gem of Italian cookery is just a 5-minute walk from Palazzo Ducale, and unlike many restaurants near Doge’s Palace, it’s open all day, from 10 am to 10 pm.
Osteria Enoteca San Marco: best for wine by the glass
Modern Italian cuisine – $$$
An enoteca is a wine shop where visitors can sample local or regional wines by the glass. Many near Palazzo Ducale serve snacks; some have turned into full-blown restaurants. Osteria Enoteca San Marco welcomes both drinkers and diners.
You’ll be spoilt for choice with over 300 wines available by the glass. And the creative menu carefully balances tastes in every dish. Try taglioni with king crab and zucchini flowers, or tandoori octopus with sweet potato and sour cream.
This is not the place to skip dessert. Who could resist pistachio ice cream and chocolate crumble? Or rum pannacotta with caramelized orange and panettone?
This inn-turned-taverna offers modern Italian cuisine and an extensive local wine list at prices that won’t break the bank. Enjoy a relaxing meal at this charming wine shop, one of the top restaurants near Doge’s Palace.
Dal Moro’s Fresh Pasta To Go: best for fresh pasta to take away
Pasta and homemade sauces – $$
There are times, especially on holiday, when a quick bite between sights is what you need. You’re in the market for a quick but filling lunch to eat on the go.
In Venice, there’s no need to risk a generic fast food place serving bland international cuisine. Dal Moro’s Fresh Pasta To Go is your savior. Since 2012, Dal Moro’s has specialized in cooking fresh pasta and homemade sauce from scratch for hungry lunch-goers trekking into restaurants near the Doge’s Palace.
The restaurant was founded by a 7th-generation Venetian chef, and it shows. Standards are high and service is friendly. This is Palazzo Ducale perfection and an undeniable top food-to-go spot near the Doge’s Palace in St. Mark’s Square.
Caffé del Doge: best for coffee
International and house blend coffee – $$
It won’t surprise you to hear that there’s strong competition for the title of Venice’s best coffee bar. Venetians first imported coffee in the 16th century. The Italians take their coffee very seriously, and Venice is no exception.
The friendly Caffé del Doge boasts a large inventory of imported specialty coffees, as well as delicious house blends. There are herbal teas and cold drinks, as well as pastries and chocolate snacks for a light bite. But it’s the coffee that’s the star.
Caffé del Doge’s origins date to 1952 when it was founded as a roastery. Soon it was supplying many of Venice’s top coffee shops and Venetian homes. Calle dei Cinque is the location of the original roastery, and the traditional Classico Veneziana roasting method is still used.
Situated near the picturesque Rialto Bridge, Caffe del Doge is about a 12-minute walk via Merceria Orologio from the Doge’s Palace.
Club del Doge: best for fine dining
High-end Italian cuisine – $$$$
Ritzy Club del Doge is unquestionably one of the top restaurants near Doge’s Palace. An opulent environment, superior service, and first-class food make for a memorable dining experience.
Club del Doge can be found at luxury hotel The Gritti Palace, housed in a grand building, not far from Palazzo Ducale, which was once the private residence of the Doge. Fine art, grand antiques, and dazzling decor provide a splendid backdrop. The dining room even has a hand-painted ceiling.
The menu changes with the seasons and tends towards meat, fish, and game. A recent spring starter was spider crab with onion and vanilla puree, soup and sea fennel. The 30-day-aged beef fillet came with green peas, broccolini, and spinach salad with walnuts.
The restaurant boasts water views on both sides, and the Gritti Terrace, open from April to October, opens onto the Grand Canal. Booking is advisable, and keep in mind that Club del Doge’s popularity is so high that there’s a cover charge. But you’re here, so why not splurge?