Historical Gourmet Restaurant in Venice
Historical Fine Dining Restaurant in St Mark's Square Venice.
A wedding at the historic Caffe & Ristorante Quadri signifies savouring the elegance and romance of the only Michelin star restaurant in St. Mark's Square.
Discover the wonder and vitality of Venetian life from its tables under the 13th century porticos. The colours, tastes and cosmopolitan lifestyle of the old Venetian Republic have been captured for centuries in the Caffè Ristorante Quadri which has been a crossroads since the end of the 18th century until present day between Venetian history and the many famous personalities who have graced this extraordinary city.
Dreams really do come true and at the Caffè & Ristorante Quadri, as you sip a cocktail to the strains of its orchestra and the chimes of St. Mark’s bells, while you admire and savour the most beautiful setting that human genius has ever built.
Today the Caffè & Ristorante Quadri is a unique and refined blend of culinary pleasures combining a traditional and gracious welcome to both international and Venetian guests seeking fine dining and impeccable service.
The Caffè & Ristorante Quadri is one of the few restaurants in the world that can boast such an enduring charm whilst maintaining its ancient past despite the passing of the years and trends.
Today as you sit in the rooms of this aristocratic residence, looking out onto St Marks Square, you can still feel the atmosphere of those early cafés that changed the social habits of Europeans between the era of the Venetian Republic and the dawn of modern age.
The luxurious furnishings, immaculate service, and cosy but elegant atmosphere all contribute in making the Caffe & Ristorante Quadri a unique and exclusive place in Venice and perfect for special occasions.
The refined cuisine, featuring only fresh ,quality products, is prepared with the great culinary skills of the chefs bringing joy to even the most demanding and expert palates.
A highly refined cuisine combining the ingenious inventiveness of its great chefs with Venetian tradition, resulting in a blend of classic flavours and natural products.
Caffè & Ristorante Quadri Today
The only fine-dining restaurant located in Piazza San Marco, Ristorante Quadri boasts one of the Venice's most incredible views.
The Alajmo family took over the restaurant in early 2011, bringing the spirit and service of famous 3 Star Michelin Le Calandre Restaurant in Padua to the lagoon.
The cuisine of Quadri is a contemporary expression of Italian and Venetian classics. The menu, created by Max Alajmo and carried out by Quadri’s executive chef and team, highlights ingredients sourced directly from the Venetian lagoon, including fresh fish that arrives daily from the Rialto market.
The atmosphere in the dining room is elegant, yet relaxed, allowing guests to enjoy the allure of the most beautiful square in the world.
The restaurant was awarded its first Michelin star in 2012.
Traditional Italian and Venetian dishes are treated with little touches of the exotic, representative of Venice's history as a major port of trade. The food, like the city itself, is elegantly instilled with foreign influences.
The egg yolks used in the spaghetti alla carbonara are prepared according to an ancient Japanese technique, while a signature dish of Le Calandre, Max's cuttlefish cappuccino, takes on a new dimension with the addition of baby Venetian shrimp and curried clams.
Created by Max Alajmo, with the help of executive chef Silvio Giavedoni and sous chef Denis Mattiuzi, the menu draws directly from the lagoon. Daily trips to the Rialto market allow the chefs to serve only the freshest seafood and local ingredients.
Cooking is in our DNA.
The Alajmo family's professional interest in food and restaurants can be traced back to the end of World War II, when our grandfather, Vittorio, opened a humble cheese counter inside the main market hall in downtown Padua. After working in restaurants throughout the Veneto region, our parents, Erminio and Rita, took over Le Calandre restaurant in Sarmeola di Rubano, a small town just outside Padua, in the early Eighties.
Thanks to Erminio's strong managerial skill and Rita's extraordinary culinary talent of Rita Chimetto Le Calandre received its first Michelin start. Shortly afterward they made the courageous decision to pass the restaurant on to their children. A risky challenge that proved more than successful over time and worldwide.
Each member our family developed their own role within the business, choosing to do what interests them most. Erminio manages La Montecchia, Rita oversees the Alajmo pastry kitchen, Max is the head chef, Raf the CEO, while Laura can be found behind the counter of Il Calandrino during the morning, welcoming customers with a cappuccino and a smile.
Max Alajmo & The 3 Star Michelin “Le Calandre” Restaurant Padua
“Cuisine must undress itself of the superfluous to rediscover the innocence of a child describing his little world”
“Le Calandre is the creative laboratory and culinary research centre of all our restaurants.”
Originally opened in 1981 by Erminio and Rita Alajmo, Le Calandre is currently one of seven restaurants in Italy to be recognized with three Michelin stars, an honor that the restaurant has held since 2003. Ranked at the top of all the major Italian restaurant guides, it is also one of the “The World's 35 Best Restaurants.”
Max's cuisine, based on the concepts of depth, lightness and fluidity, is poetry on a plate. Inspiration for his distinctive dishes comes from looking at the world with a sense of discovery.
His distinctive approach to cuisine finds is reflected in the dining room of Le Calandre. Everything from the hand-carved wooden tables to the glassware and room fragrance was designed by the Alajmo brothers and produced by master Italian artisans. The result is a multisensory culinary experience that is carried the dining room, cordially and naturally.
Our team of experienced event planners, Michelin-starred chefs, sommeliers and maîtres will make sure that your event is both unique and memorable.
Massimiliano ( Max) Alajmo
Born in Padua in 1974, Massimiliano (Max) Alajmo grew up inside the kitchen of Le Calandre alongside his mother, chef Rita Chimetto.
After attending hotel management school in Italy, Max furthered his culinary education by in the kitchens of important European chefs like Alfredo Chiocchetti, Marc Veyrat and Michel Guérard.
Upon returning to Padua, Max was named executive chef of Le Calandre and his brother Raf took over as general manager. Together, the Alajmo brothers worked passionately to transform their parent's modest restaurant into one of the world's best.
On November 27, 2002, Le Calandre received three Michelin stars, making Max, at 28, the youngest chef ever to obtain this culinary distinction.
Today, Max oversees the kitchens of the Alajmo family's three gastronomic restaurants, three caffè-bistros and food product line - all from Le Calandre, his vibrant culinary laboratory.
“Depth, lightness and fluidity”
Max's cuisine is the fruit of a study that goes beyond taste. He approaches ingredients with respect, researching them in depth, in order to understand their true essence and bring out the best in them.
His dishes capture all of our senses; beginning with the most evocative of the five, our sense of smell. According to Max, the ephemeral component of aromas and perfumes is compensated by their immediacy and ability to create lasting memories, particularly in relation to food.
His work is also focused on lightening culinary preparations using carefully techniques that to not mask the ingredient, but rather bring out its peculiar characteristics.
The concept of fluidity is fundamental in giving an order to the ingredients in each dish. Translated into culinary terms, this means that every element in a recipe must make it's own contribution to create a harmonic balance, carrying with it the memory of where it has been.
The result is combination of intense sensations. An original presentation of ancient flavors using a fresh and reassuring approach.
Raffaele Alajmo ( Raf)
Born in Padua in 1968, Raffaele (Raf) Alajmo is a third generation restaurateur and C.E.O. of Alajmo S.p.A. Together with his family, he owns and operates several restaurants in Padua and Venice, known for their gastronomic standards and professional, yet relaxed approach.
After graduating high school in 1988, Raf joined his father Erminio in the dining room of Le Calandre as a sommelier. After attending various sommelier courses and visiting top wineries throughout Italy and France, he was named wine director.
He worked to improve the wine list for a number of years before taking over as manager of Le Calandre in 1994, when his parents left to open La Montecchia.
With Max in the kitchen and Raf in the dining room, Le Calandre was awarded its second, and then third, Michelin stars. The restaurant quickly became a destination for food-lovers from around the world.
But this was just the beginning. Today, Raf manages the family's expanding business, bringing vision and strength to his team of over 100 employees.
The Alajmo Group
Today the Alajmo family is a group of circa 130 employees, divided between 10 business areas, each working towards a common goal: the search for excellence and authentic Italian style.
All of the strategic decisions are made in via Ligura, home to Le Calandre, the creative research center of Max and Raf. Every Alajmo restaurant and caffè is run as a small business, with its own identity and personnel that works in synergy with the other units of the group.
“Attention to detail is what makes the difference"
History and Guestbook at Caffè & Ristorante Quadri
With its historic roots as far back as the 28th of May 1775 when Giorgio Quadri, a Venetian from the Levantine , disembarked from a galley on Riva degli Schiavoni, along with his savings and his young and legendary Greek wife Naxina, to seek his fame and fortune in Venice.
The fashion of drinking coffee, “ the bubbling black water” obtained from a bean called Khavè by the Turks, had just started to catch on in the then cosmopolitan society of Venice.
This property was already renowned in the city, having traded under the name of "Il Rimedio" since 1638, selling Malvasia wine considered at the time to be "a remedy" because it was believed, in the words of Tassini, "to reinvigorate the body and reawaken the spirit".
Politicians, merchants and businessmen then switched their habits from wine to coffee, including the Turkish variety which Quadri himself introduced to Venice.
In 1830 the Quadri was restored by the Vivarini brothers, who gave the café a new lease of life by opening the upper floor as a restaurant.
The ground floor rooms, with their distinctive stuccos decorated in pastel shades of light green and yellow, were the natural backdrop for the splendid paintings by Giuseppe Ponga who adopted his own personal style of using the bright colours of the great Tiepolo.
Two centuries later the entire world has changed but not Venice, the Caffè Quadri & Restaurant has had the pleasure of hosting frequent visitors in bygone such as Stendhal, Lord Byron, Alexandre Dumas, Wagner and Marcel Proust and in more recent times Gorbaciov, Mitterand, Woody Allen and many actors from the Venice Film Festival along with the "beautiful people" who have for centuries chosen to meet in this eternally fashionable spot.
During the famous Biennial and the Venice Film Festival, the Caffè & Ristorante Quadri is the haunt of artists, architects, writers, actors and journalists, and throughout the year regularly hosts cultural events and exhibitions.
On turning the pages of the Caffè Ristorante Quadri’s guest book, we discover that Stendhal, the first great 19th century French novelist, and author of The Charterhouse of Parma was a Quadri habitué.
Lord Byron, the great British romantic poet was so in love with Venice that he stayed here for three years and when not writing he led a dissolute and
hedonistic life, partly spent in the famous café.
Honoré de Balzac visited in 1837. Marcel Proust, whose feelings for Venice are expressed in The Death of Albertine, used to lunch at the Quadri with his mother. Alexandre Dumas, who came to Venice to see Verdi's staging of his Lady of the Camellias and spent huge sums of money at the Quadri to satisfy his enormous appetite.
The German composer, Richard Wagner, who died in Venice, used to sip coffee at eleven every morning, letting himself be admired without being disturbed through the splendid café windows.
Nobel-prize winners, actors, writers and famous opera singers, the international jet set continues to chose the Quadri as a must when visiting the most unique and romantic city in the world.
More recent and illustrious guests Mikhail Gorbachev and his wife Raisa, the Swedish Royal Family, the New York filmmaker Woody Allen, who has made Venice his second home, and many actors such as Marcello Mastroianni, Robert DeNiro, Robin Williams, Antony Quinn, Brad Pitt, Pierce Brosnan, Mariagrazia Cucinotta and many more.
Over the years the entire world has changed but not Venice, or the Caffè & Ristorante Quadri where the pleasure of meeting in an elegant, fashionable location is carried on.
A Wedding in Venice
Caffè Quadri & Dream Academy That's Amore !