Remedio – Wine in Venice Part II

Remedio is another word which is related to wine and specifically with a quality of malavasia,  a sweet golden wine coming from the Venetian terre da mar.

This type of vinification provided three types of Malvasia:  dolce, which was sold abroad because not really liked by the Venetians; tonda which had a thin and smooth flavour; and garba more strong and acid. This last type was very popular also because it was believed to cure stomach disorders.

The best Malvasia Garba of Venice was believed to be sold at a malvasia near Santa Maria Formosa whose owner’s name was Remedio and as Remedy sounds like “rimedio” (remedy), the wine sold in this shop was believed to contain special properties. Later the name was even used to name the area. In fact today you can find a calle, a fondamenta and a bridge with the same name.

Malvasie and magazeni were not the only shops where you could have wine. You could taste a good glass of it in a osteria, a place where you could drink but also eat and find accomodation.

At the beginning of the fourteenth century just around the Rialto area there were 16 osterie and several streets name are still today reminding of these places: Calle alla Torre, Calle della Scimmia, Calle della Donzella, etc.

Do Spade is the only osteria still exsisting and still partly providing the same business: drinking and food.

Today one of the most popular in town where to experience good cicheti and a nice glass of wine.

Now let’s stop talking and…….let’s go tasting.


Favero, C. ed., Venice and Viticulture. Wines and Wines: the legacy of the Venetian Republic, Biblos Edizioni, Cittadella (PD), 2014.

Magazen – Wine in Venice Part I

Exploring Venice you might end up in an alley with a misleading name “Magazen”. In Italian the word makes you think of a storehouse. In Venetian the word is instead connected to the practice of drinking wine.

In the Middle Ages the Venetian had the merit to turn the drinking of wine into a status symbol: a beverage that for many years was more associated to religion, became a gift to rulers and was served during important banquets, thus becoming a product that you could not be left without it.

The barges transporting the wine barrels were docking at the Rialto, at the Riva del Vin, where they had to wait for inspection by the custom officers, who then gave the authorization for the unloading and storage of the barrels after they had reckoned their contenents.

The equivalent of today bars started to spread all around the town, each with their specific characteristics.

The magazeni were responsible for the sale of local wine and served by the jug rather by the glass and were frequented by the lower class.

The malvasie served rather more high-quality wine: the refined sweet wines from the East, also named “shipped wines”.

The malvasie had also some restrictions: they could not host card-plying and they could not advertise their presence with a sign so the owners simply began to identify their business with branches of laurel, which became their trademark.

The Malvasie were also recognizible by a particular sort of interior made with wine barrels used as elegant tables by their customers, exactly as you can still find today if you decide to melt into the Venetian dolce vita.

If you are ready for such an experience do not wait, clic on this link and we will have fun together.


Favero, C. ed., Venice and Viticulture. Wines and Wines: the legacy of the Venetian Republic, Biblos Edizioni, Cittadella (PD), 2014.