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“An Objective Review of my Dining Experience”
Review of La Colombina

La Colombina
Ranked #35 of 1,476 Restaurants in Venice
Certificate of Excellence
Price range: US$49 - US$74
Cuisines: Italian
More restaurant details
Restaurant details
Dining options: Breakfast, After-hours, Outdoor Seating, Reservations
Neighbourhood: Cannaregio
Description: Right in the heart of Venice, between Santa Lucia train station and the Rialto Bridge, and just a few steps away from the Casino, you will find a restaurant where we have translated our welcoming philosophy into a concrete culinary experience: "La Colombina". There are numberless reasons to visit and revisit Venice, but now you can add one more: "La Colombina", a gastronomic experience inspired by tradition but also focused on contemporaneity. In short, a new "classic" ranging from traditional Venetian dishes to unique gourmet temptations going from aperitifs to lunches and special occasions. How to reach us: It's incredibly simple! From Piazzale Roma or the Santa Lucia train station follow the main street (Strada Nova) towards Ponte di Rialto (take a left when exiting the train station). In the "calle" (small street) just in front of the "Teatro Italia" you will find La Colombina. We are only 10 minutes away from the central station, just a few steps from the Casino and 10 minutes from the Rialto Bridge. La Colombina is also conveniently adjacent to a "Vaporetto" stop (San Marcuola, Linea 1) and is centrally located and ideally very close to Venice's main attractions.
Reviewed 26 June 2017

We wanted a nice place to celebrate my birthday and I wanted to pick one that was listed on TripAdvisor so we picked La Colombina. The restaurant seemed quite popular and the diners were mostly well dressed. To be honest, we felt a little out of place possibly because we were dressed too casually for a place like this.

We were served the best breads we tasted in all the restaurants we ate in Italy. This was gourmet bread with a few varieties. We were not wine drinkers so we only had a bottle of sparkling water and a glass of Prosecco since it was my birthday.

The service was 'appropriate' but far from warm or friendly. One of the service staff even carried an air of snob befitting of a fine dining restaurant. I felt a little tinge of regret after being seated.

The prices were a little on the high side and the size of their food portions were small. Selection is not wide but should work well if you are a foodie and if you enjoy drinking wine because most diners ordered wine. You would expect no less on the quality of food served here but I ended up being disappointed with my pasta.

We were served amuse bouche which was a pleasant surprise. I had the fettuccine al ragout (tomato sauce with meat) while my husband had the Spaghetti di Gragnano (clams). The presentation was what you would expect from this gourmet restaurant listed in a Michelin Guide. This is an edited version of my review from my blog. My full review is at - yourworldtraveller.com/italy/la-colombina-restaurant

My fettuccine was a little bit of a disappointment. It was not as rich in flavour and a bit too dry for my liking. It was also a bit too al dente for my liking but I would not complain since I am in Italy. I had high hopes for it since I have tasted really good ones by Italian chefs with restaurants from where I reside. My husband's dish was very good though and I actually liked his more. Despite the clams being so tiny, the seafood flavour was strong and tasty in his pasta.

We also ordered a main course of Seabass fillet in zucchini. When I started to cut into the fish, I saw a fine strand of hair entangled amidst the layer of zucchini slices. This was quite startling for a fancy restaurant like this one. I felt I had to inform them of this little disaster since a gourmet restaurant should not have hair in their food.

After a few minutes of close examination and removing the layers of zucchini, the restaurant manager finally saw the hair strand and proceeded to apologise. She insisted on a replacement. I have to be honest that the replacement fish turned out smaller than the first one which was a tad disappointing.

Coming from a fine dining restaurant where I was a marketing manager, the usual practice for such incidents was service recovery. A replacement of the dish was a necessity but it would not be sufficient to earn back the satisfaction from a diner.

Maybe my expectations were too high. While we were nice diners and were very discreet in pointing out the problem with our dish, the restaurant did not practise service recovery - not even a complimentary dessert that would not cost much. Even if the fish was tender and beautifully cooked, it was not impressive and we will never forget this dining experience.

As I write this review, I am aware that the restaurant will not like my review and may attempt to write a defensive response (as they have done to previous reviewers). I maintain that my review is as objective as can be, based on my personal experience dining at this restaurant. I give it 3 stars: -1 star for the underwhelming meat sauce pasta that lacked flavour; -1 star for improvement needed in their service recovery protocol and service equality to all kinds of customers, regardless of their spend.

Thank YourWorldTraveller
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
stafflacolombina, Direttore at La Colombina, responded to this reviewResponded 28 June 2017

hello, since you asked for a replay:
first of all i 'll try to be short since i don' won't to bother anyone ; so just a few facts:
.we don't have a dress code but if you felt too casual and this reflects on your mood you can't tell it's because of us, so maybe the service was not as frindly as you thought but you said it was appropriate yourself.
.the hair, your are right no excuses but as you unfortunately it may happen (sorry again) even if we try to prevent it with hats etc. we replaced the fish fillet and yes it was smaller but it iws just the proof it was another fish and not just yours without the hair. the size of fishes beeing real fishes can be a little different each to the other.
. flavour in pasta, our grandma meat souce is a beef and tomato souce which is pretty popular, no celery and carrots, sorry you did'n liked it but im glad you enjoed your housbands spaghetti.
.finally the prices are listed inseide the resaturant outside and online and they are tuned on the venetian market

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75 - 79 of 878 reviews

Reviewed 25 June 2017

Excellent location, service, and food come together at La Colombina where we had not only the best meal during our three days in Venice but the best dinner so far during our three-week Mediterranean tour. The restaurant is nestled in a quiet, intimate setting off one of the main streets in Venice's Canareggio neighborhood. The menu changes periodically and features many choices and preparations. After sampling some light and creamy goat cheese, we started with a special eggplant tomato dish just brought back to the menu and moved on to pasta standards such as raviolotti stuffed with spinach and ricotta cheese and fettuccine "della nonna." More daring choices also available. Everything tastes fresh and exciting. Strong wine selection, delicious breads, and tasty desserts. Friendly, family service. Highly recommended.

    • Service
    • Food
Thank PaulDuaneBrinkman
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 22 June 2017

We had been given a ton of recommendations from "foodie" friends who visit and have lived in Venice but we had a last minute change of plans and needed a place fast. I picked this one off TripAdvisor becasue it was close to our hotel and I'm glad I did. We had a lot of amazing food in Venice but this place wasn't just good it was exciting. Everything about this place was great. The service was informative and friendly. The ambiance was contemporary and comfortable. The wine was fantastic and moderately priced and the food was extraordinary with the youthful excitement of a young chef successfully experimenting with ingredients and flavor.

Highly recommend!!

Thank Dave K
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 19 June 2017 via mobile

Wonderful restaurant with pleasant and relaxing atmosphere, perfect and delicious food. I chose sea testing menu and it was so difficult to eat everything-the portions are very large, and of course, very tasty.Products are fresh, served with original design. The waiter will help to choose wine according to your preferences and tastes. All employees are very friendly and helpful.
The restaurant is included in Micheline guide 2017.

If you are in Venice for sure book a table in this cosy and nice place.

Thank Olya T
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 16 June 2017 via mobile

I have not had great luck with restaurants in Venice, but La Columbina was great. Low key, great food.

Thank David Y
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC

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