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Craving a bit of Little Italy in Bogotá? Want to enjoy some wine with the meal? GiGi’s Restaurant and Wine Market, an Italian-American restaurant and wine market that opened last year in Usaquén, can satisfy that yearning. The entire left wall of the main dining area is a floor-to-ceiling wine cellar where diners can choose the best bottle for the meal, as well as decide which one to take home. Wait a minute…take wine home from a restaurant? At those prices? Well, the good news is that the wines-at supermarket-prices from GiGi’s make that possible.

With wine culture growing in Bogotá, GiGi’s aims to encourage diners to engage in wine experiences by maintaining easily accessible prices. The philosophy behind the restaurant is that the wine that accompanies the meal doesn’t have to be more expensive than the food itself. Having the wines within arm’s reach can also make it easier to browse through the bottles and choose which one should be the guest of honor at the meal.

The wine list was designed by José Rafael Arango, voted Best Sommelier of Colombia at La Barra awards this year. The 167 wines they offer include champagnes, sparkling wines, whites, rosés and reds from around the world. Wines from Spain are among the most popular, priced as low as $39,000 pesos.

GiGi’s keeps those prices low by buying in large quantities and taking advantage of specials, and those savings get passed on to the clients. But the main reason they keep their prices lower is that they simply charge less, thus encouraging their customers to try more wines.

Of course, there’s food here too. French chef Michel Barré worked with Italian chefs and restaurant owners in the United States, and his travels eventually led him to Bogotá where he’s now cooking up good things at GiGi’s.

To accompany the wine of choice they have “Wine Tablets” featuring selections of fish, meat, vegetables or cheese. Some of their other reasons to drink include roasted pork, smoked prawns or salmon filet in vodka sauce. Octopus alla Diavola, BBQ octopus with Cajun sauce, is another specialty.

A new two story location in Quinta Camacho opened early July, with a charming outside seating area. That gives diners two places to experience the complex world of wines at a reasonable price, accompanied by New York-style Italian food.

Calle 118 No. 5-63
Calle 69A No.9-09

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