Hotel Rialto tel:250-383-7310 1450 Douglas St

Swanky with a kickass wine list...Victoria has been waiting for this for awhile. Veneto wouldn't seem at all remarkable in a bigger city, but it's pretty unusual around here.
Some big money went into developing the old Douglas Hotel and the infamous "Dougie" beer hall.
The menu is a series of trios - fun and pretty tasty. I was especially fond of the sliders (mini-burgers), with chopped striploin, cooked medium rare ($14).
Food aside Veneto has the most interesting wine list I've seen in a long time. They have a little bit of everything, with lots of glasses, as well as flights and a bottle list with incredible breadth for the length.
The service was friendly and informed and not at all pretentious considering the 'big city' ambiance.
Veneto will ultimately be a drinking spot with food, but to be honest, that's what Victoria needs.

June 2009