Antigua, GT: Quesos y Vino
After my first visit, I never would have guessed I would ever give this place such high ratings … though the calzone was greatness, the pizza disappointing, the pasta forgettable, the wine list limited and the service memorably deplorable. The name of the restaurant uses Vino and not vinos and they almost take that literally
The pizza should have been stellar. They have special wood-fired clay and brick ovens outside to bake pizza. Everything is made from scratch, dough, sauce, pasta, etc. It is highly regarded by locals. As I said in that first report, looks 10, taste 4.
I would have chalked up the pizza to accommodating local tastes, but I was with two Guatemalan families and they now use it as a measure to describe pizza they don’t like.
Why go back?
I was in the nabe and the crusty sandwich rolls baked in their ovens looked wonderful. Like the call of a siren to the rocks, those rolls lured me back. So when I happened to be passing by, I decided to give the restaurant another chance.
It was a tasty sandwich, especially hot out of the oven. To top it off I had one of the better cups of cappuccino in Antigua.
Here's what I had rated from A+ to F -
B + … Mozzarella, red pepper and basil Italian sandwich
B + … Flan Antigüeño
A - … Cappuccino
Service: B + … Very, very good
Ambiance: B + … Very, very good
Restaurant record with more info such as address, phone, hours and menu
Flickr photostream with more pictures
The website has some very good photos of the restaurant and deli
QUESOS Y VINO DETAILS
MOZZARELLA, RED PEPPER AND BASIL ITALIAN SANDWICH: B + … Very, very good
Hot from the oven, the crust crackled, the cheese oozed around the roasted red peppers and fresh basil in delirious deliciousness. Even later when I had the other half cold, it was still an excellent sandwich, the soft bread having a nice chew, the fillings good quality
FLAN ANTIGÜEÑO: B + … Very, very good
I fell in love with the local flan at La Casa del Flan Antigüeño. Every time I’m in Antigua I stop there. Whenever I see flan Antigüeño on other menus, I order it. So far no place has matched it.
At Quesos y Vino the flan was different but very good. It didn’t set my chow bells ringing like La Casa, but I thoroughly enjoyed it.
A liquor-laced tres leche type of cake that was the perfect moistness was topped with thick flan with camote (sweet potato), fig, coconut and other fruit.
CAPPUCCINO: A - … Way above average
This was a classic cappuccino, great foam and assertive brew.
SERVICE: B + … Very, very good
The service this time was Dr. Jekyll to last visit’s Mr. Hyde. If only the service had been this good the previous time. This time it was warm and friendly. Menu, food and check were all prompt. They packaged my sandwich to go beautifully. There was also a staff member who spoke English.
AMBIANCE: B + … Very, very good
There’s no denying this is a gorgeous restaurant. Lawn tables with umbrellas are luxuriously spaced on the pretty green grass surrounded by trees and flowers. A small building with counter seating holds the main clay pizza oven
Hugging the side of the restaurant are shaded wooden tables secluded by lush greenery. Two smaller ovens are in a trellis-shaded area with tables. There’s lots of beauty and privacy.
There’s a small deli inside with a cheese counter, pans of fresh house-made pasta, bread and wine. The cheese selection isn’t extensive, mainly a repeat of many of a half dozen cheeses such as mozarrella. Pans of fresh pasta and Italian rolls are in a glass case.
Attached is a indoor dining area with a spiral stair case leading to some upstairs tables. However, the outdoor area is the place to eat.
On a sunny afternoon, I can see stopping by for a sandwich and definitely a cappuccino.However, as tempting as they look, I’ve tried most of the the pizza and to me it was lacking in the flavor department.
Actually, after writing this, I wish I could drop by right now.