Tribes: Who likes this place?
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These scores tell you how well-liked a place is in each Tribe. Gogobot Tribes are groups who share a certain travel style, like Family Travelers or History Buffs.
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- 63%Luxury Travelers
- 63%Nightlife Lovers
- 63%Local Culture
- 62%Business Travelers
Member Reviews (14)
- Enoteca VespaioDec 26, 2013
Great place to get dessert after dining at any of SoCo's great restaurants, and not at all a bad place on its own, to put it mildly, especially for Italian cuisine, or lunch or brunch. The desserts are outstanding. Many superb pastries on view in their waiting area. Excellent selection of wines and other spirits. Probably the most popular dessert destination on SoCo (South Congress Avenue). Deservedly so.
- Enoteca VespaioJul 05, 2012
Vespaio---Italian for beehive, and thus slang for a place that's really buzzing, as evidenced by the honeycomb design on their business cards, and this place seriously does that and more since opening in 1998. Having heard that they do not take reservations, my coworker and I arrived at 6:15PM on a Friday. Parking was not too difficult, as there's a parking lot off back, otherwise you may have to find street parking in the South Congress (SoCo) area. But maybe that's if you arrive early, as we did. Since they start seating at 5:30PM, we were told it'd be 45 minutes at least before a table opened up. Yes, they were already full! So we took a table by the wall in the bar area, and what a wonderful bar it is. And the decor is quite nice, an exposed-brick-and-glass fronted by an impressive antipasto case, and in back a seasonal garden filled with the likes of eggplant, tomatoes, chard, green beans, and squash. Here too the bar was already packed. It's also a very romantic setting, but not too dim. It can be noisy, but not uncomfortably so. By the end of our meal, the bar was packed 2 and 3 people deep. And quite a good-looking crowd as well. And what were all these people waiting for? There's a reason Vespaio is the number one restaurant in Austin, and it's the flawlessly prepared sublime and complex Italian cuisine by celebrity chef Ryan Sampson. The bar has a long list of antipasti on the wall, and the regular menu comes with a separate page full of daily specials. There's also an extensive wine list. Service is very good, as well. Our bread came with a cannellini bean dip with garlic and parsley oil, which was amazing. I loved it for not being commonplace butter, and being lactose-intolerant, I was further overjoyed as well. Not to mention that it tasted wonderful. And cannellini beans are known for their buttery taste. With this kind of start, you know the remainder of the meal will not disappoint. For my starter, I had the zuppa, a brandied fish bisque served with basil-wrapped gulf coast shrimp, $8. It was one gulf coast shrimp that came on the side, but it was huge, the size of a roll of quarters curled up into a spiral. I added it to my soup, which was so very yummy. Next I had the potato-crusted ruby snapper over creamed fennel and leeks finished with Tasmanian lump crab meat, $29, another daily special. It must be a Texas thing, to have two kinds of meat in one dish! The potato crust reminded me of hash browns, or shoestring pommes frites, and had a delightful crunchy texture. This dish was very delicious. And portions are large, enough to share. My coworker had the spinach salad and the prosciutto-wrapped gulf coast shrimp with risotto cakes and mustard greens. The risotto cakes, crabcake-like spheres, were a delight to eat. We were both nearly full by now, but managed to fit in dessert. I had the Fuji apple bread pudding, a warm brioche pudding studded with apples and golden raisins topped with Calvados (an apple liqueur) hard sauce and finished with a golden raisin syrup, $7. I enjoyed this dessert very much, the Calvados sauce an excellent pairing with the Fuji apples. My coworker had wanted something to cleanse her palate of the salty prosciutto, and the Meyer lemon sorbet did the job perfectly. You can eat more cheaply at Vespaio, but you'll wind up spending about $44 if you order one of the more expensive entrees, but no matter what you decide, it's all splendid.
- Enoteca VespaioMember ofLocal CultureBudget TravelersFoodies+ 2First to ReviewJul 04, 2012
Stroll south on Congress to check out the eclectic SoCo shops you mentioned and you will arrive at Enoteca Vespaio, the lower cost version and next door neighbor of Vespaio. Both offer great Italian, but Enoteca Vespaio is Broke Girl friendly.