Times change and with them, traditions. Nowadays everyone speaks proper Italian and a lot of of words belonging to the Venetian dialect have been replaced with their Italian version even among those who still speak in dialect. One of these words is basil (basilico in Italian), but thank goodness a lovely bar in Venice remembers us its original form with its name: Basegò.
Basegò is located in Campo San Tomà, in the city centre but in a relatively calm area, and, exactly like basil, it's fresh and inviting. Bright big windows, light brown wooden furniture, plants, pillows, beautiful watercolours on the walls and, mostly, incredible wine, local craft beer and mouthwatering cicchetti.
The bar is quite small, with one barrel, small benches and stools. At the bottom of the bar there is a small area for children, with a small table with sheets of paper and colours, just to keep them entertained while you enjoy a drink. Despite the size, the atmosphere is airy and bright, with a positive energy. The counter is clean and in order, with a soft illumination and all the goodies in the right places, awaiting to be savoured.
I also like the plants and prosciutto hanging from the red brick wall (at an appropriate distance, don't worry!), where other signs and notes are placed. In fact, Basegò is also one of the collection points for locals who order their vegetables and eggs from an organic farm in the mainland called Donna Gnora. Basically, people order online and collect the bag once a week in a specific bar/store (if you have moved here I suggest looking at their website).
This is the sort of place where people stand and chat and in the evening, from the aperitif on, it's definitely buzzing with locals. The craft unfiltered and unpasteurized beers are produced by Redentor Beer, a small company born from the passion of 3 Venetians, and are called Skia, Moeka and Sepa, like three of the most traditional local fish ( schie are grey shrimps, moeche are soft shell crabs and sepe are squids). The beer is produced in Morgana, in the province of Treviso and I particularly like Skia, the blond one, light and easy to drink. The wines too are a big focus and the selection is quite interesting. If you are not sure, ask them for advice, they will be happy to help.
They also serve teas, coffee and freshly squeezed juices. We shared a beer (they use half litre bottles or bigger) and a couple of cicchetti. As you can see the assortment is so very alluring...difficult to choose, but in the end we opted for one with watermelon and feta cheese and one with prosciutto, strawberry and melon. So good! We spent about 10 euros, which is not bad at all! If you want more than a snack they also make express sandwiches and selections of cheese and cured meats, all garnished with fruit and chutneys... definitely worth trying.
Sometimes they also have porchetta (savoury boneless pork roast) served cut at the moment in thick slices and with a pinch of salt... yum...
The cheese is good too and I like the fact they always combine it with fresh fruit, making the bite fresher and lighter. Anyway, it's still August and it's incredibly hot in Venice so what we had was just right for this climate!
I highly recommend stopping at Basegò if what you are looking for is a chilled, friendly atmosphere, good quality wine and beer and cicchetti!
Address: San Polo, Campo San Tomà 2863, 30125 Venice
Opening hours: 10 am - 11pm/12am
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