Trattoria alla Maddalena

Fondamenta di Santa Caterina, 7/b, 30142 Venezia VE, Italy

Feast on fresh-caught fish and seafood and wash it down with Italian wine during a leisurely summer lunch at Alla Maddalena on Mazzorbo Island. A 45-minute ferry ride from Venice and far removed from the crowds, this charming, less touristy and altogether tiny island in the Venice lagoon is wonderful place to escape for an afternoon. And Alla Maddalena serves amazing fried fish as well as top-notch mussels and clams, all of which can be eaten al fresco either in the back garden or by the canal. The trattoria is also known for handmade pastas and seasonal ingredients from fruits to locally hunted game like wild duck. (Mazzorbo is a short walk across footbridge from Burano Island, so if you’re planning a trip to Burano, you can add a stop here for dinner.)

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“If it’s summertime, go to the islands for the day! At Alla Maddalena on Mazzorbo, you can sit on the front patio under the shade of a pergola. They do the best fried fish, wonderful pasta, fantastic mussels and clams, and an amazing fig tart made with figs from their garden. Mazzorbo is a tiny island, about 45 minutes by boat from Venice, and it’s attached to Burano, which has all these colorful houses. It’s a charming place, and it’s nice to have the whole day to walk around, eat lunch, visit the winery next door, and just take it all in.” —Skye McAlpine, cookbook author and Venice native.

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