Smoke Gets in Your Eats

The superb red snapper fillet (a special) was a larger, more satisfying portion. Scented more than flavored with ginger and lemon, the broiled snapper was juicy and moist. Only one fish dish -- salmon with honey-mustard glaze, fried leeks, and couscous -- is listed on the menu.Seafood and fish are mostly offered as specials, which the server lists for you.

Service, while informed, is unpretentious, and were it not for the parties of smokers filling the restaurant, we would have been content to linger over a flaky, house-made apple tart topped with vanilla ice cream. But the haze was making my eyes tear, and one of my guests began to choke up as a result of her asthma, so we wolfed down the tart and ice cream, paid the bill, and left. I don't want to be any more of a hypocrite than I already am, and I don't want to toss any constitutional freedoms out the window -- just some irritating pollutants. So I'll say only this: As long as Galha's and other restaurateurs' customers are allowed to blow smoke in a limited space, so will I.

Via Veneto Cafe
9415 Harding Ave., Surfside; 861-2211. Lunch daily from 10:00 a.m. to 3:00 p.m. Dinner nightly from 5:00 to 10:00 p.m.; Friday and Saturday until 11:00 p.m.

Caesar salad
$5.25

Mussels
$6.75

Spaghetti carbonara
$8.75

Snapper with ginger and lemon
$13.95

Apple tart
$3.75

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