Our guest blogger Rob Moshein has written about relaxing Austin wine bars downtown, but there also happen to be some great wine spots in North Austin that should be shared as well!
I first discovered Gusto Italian Kitchen & Wine Bar when I was on Burnet Road looking for another wine bar in the same neighborhood. Considering how I wandered in, lost and confused, it turned out to be a wonderful treat and surprise, boasting an impressive list and variety of wines.
And while Gusto is a great place to have some appetizers and a glass or two of wine, it also has delicious, fresh-tasting food and excellent happy hour specials. When we get just a LITTLE bit more warmth in Austin, we’ll really appreciate their fantastic outdoor patio space!
The atmosphere of Gusto is extremely relaxed. Their typical playmix is a traditional roster of bluesy 1930’s and 1940’s jukebox tunes, and the creative stencil painting on the walls feels like a contemporary take on that classic theme.
There’s a bar area for those who are looking for a more bar-type atmosphere. But primarily people come in groups and are seated at the tables. To be less subtle: Gusto isn’t a wine bar to meet people and pick them up.
Nothing to Whine About
Wow, does Gusto have wine! White wines! Red wines! Colors…in between white and red! Wines from all over the world! And from 4-7 PM everyday, every bottle of wine is 25% off as part of happy hour.
Anyone who has read my other restaurant and bar reviews knows that I value good service highly. Gusto definitely receives both of my wine-y thumbs up where service is concerned. The serving staff is attentive, and strangely perky and punny. They have good wine recommendations, too, depending on what you decide to sample from the menu.
And the menu really does have some tasty things on it! Though the fare is traditionally Italian, Gusto’s food selection is unusual enough that I’m not always sure what to expect from the description of their dishes. But thus far I’ve been pleasantly surprised!
Eat More, Drink More!
Gusto also has some great happy hour food specials. Appetizers are discounted and, on Tuesdays after 7 PM, pizzas are half-price. The pizzas are cooked fresh in-house, like the delicious warm bread that gets brought to the table no matter the time or the happiness of the hour!
I will also say as a connoisseur of olive oil that Gusto offers seriously tasty olive oil for bread dipping!
Dessert Is for Winners
If you’re feeling indulgent, Gusto has some really original dessert offerings, notably the Orange Oil Cake that Adam, Michael and I ended up sharing because we were so tempted by its originality. We were admittedly sheepish about having cake after gobbling up so much other delicious food!
It ended up tasting like an old-school Orange Creamsicle pop and was absolutely the perfect end to the evening.
So if you find yourself on Burnet Road, looking for someone else’s wine bar, go no further than Gusto Italian Kitchen & Wine Bar at the corner of 47th and Burnet.