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ComputerGuy

il Giardino Restaurant in Chapala.

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Walked all over Chapala with guests last night looking for a place that doesn't shut down before 8 pm. On the restaurant end of the malecon, even at 7:30, they didn't want us coming in. Boy, this town. I thought my  home town rolled up the sidewalks early.

We ended up with two choices on the main drag in Chapala, about a block up on the mountain side. You've probably seen them; big signs on one promoting "Pizza a la lena", etc. I went into one big place; looked nice, was open, but at that moment a mariachi group walked in and started playing. So we went to the one next door, La Giardinno. Thank goodness: they played for an hour.

What a place. I've never been in there, and that was a mistake. What a place. Three levels, dark wood, lovely interior. The photos on their FB page don't do it justice (https://www.facebook.com/IL-Giardino-454035738001559/?ref=page_internal). The menu is huge, from gyros to steaks, Italian, seafood, burgers, wood-fired pizzas. Service was excellent; everything arrived at the same time! Even better, prices are low for this day and age. Each of the five dishes were perfect, from the arrechera to the gyro (mine) and the pesto shrimp fettucini. And perfect, non-skimping, fresh-ingredient, extra-touch side and full salads. (The fettucini had slivered almonds underneath, adding a nice surprise touch of flavour.)

With a margarita, a glass of red, and a jug of limonada con mineral, the whole bill was 790 pesos. Just about fell out of my chair. Portions were a good size; my gyro (chicken) had some really interesting  and spiced (not hot) sauce and was massive, with home-made Greek pita. I want to go back and try everything: burgers, pizzas, snapper... .

On Madero about a half block north from the main traffic lights, on the mountain side. Hours? I don't know. We left after 9pm and people were just coming in. Here's the delivery menu.

Il-Giordanno-Restaurant.jpg

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Evidently, they deliver too: "Servicio a Domocilio". 

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Thanks for bringing this to our attention, Computer Guy.  We had lunch there today and the food was excellent.  Spouse had breaded shrimp with sides of vegetables and pasta.  I had salmon on a bed of veggies and side of pasta.  We will certainly be going back to try other dishes.  Service was excellent.

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I forgot to mention: some of the best grilled, sliced veg I've had in years.

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Sounds very interesting but where would one park in that area?  We have found the places on the Malecon not worth the time or money.  This is close enough to be a good alternative when visiting there.  Thanks for the report, we don't get a lot here about restaurants in Chapala proper.

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Well, at the time we went (just about 8 pm) there was plenty of parking. But every store and restaurant on that street suffers from the same overcrowded and "stolen" parking spots from 9 a.m. onward, all day.

My favourite place on the malecon in Chapala is Guicho's. Consistent, and good prices. They also have the best molcajete in town. It's the place farthest from the water in that strip of restaurants, and has an upstairs dining area with a view.

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CG, can you edit the title of this thread?  The name of the restaurant (according to the photo of the menu you posted) is Il Giardino.  If someone is searching for info about it, they might miss your excellent post. 

 

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52 minutes ago, More Liana said:

CG, can you edit the title of this thread?  The name of the restaurant (according to the photo of the menu you posted) is Il Giardino.  If someone is searching for info about it, they might miss your excellent post. 

 

That is a good idea.  But unless the person changes the default search of All Contents to Topics, they will find the posting anyway by your correction. Right now their 20 results for Giardino going back to 2012.

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I find it amazing that anyone from Ajijic would complain about parking in Chapala.

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55 minutes ago, AngusMactavish said:

I find it amazing that anyone from Ajijic would complain about parking in Chapala.

Maybe you need an app that shows available parking in Chapala and other places. 😀

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24 minutes ago, Tiny said:

Maybe you need an app that shows available parking in Chapala and other places. 😀

I use an app called visual acuity.

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6 hours ago, More Liana said:

CG, can you edit the title of this thread?  The name of the restaurant (according to the photo of the menu you posted) is Il Giardino.  If someone is searching for info about it, they might miss your excellent post.

I'm having fun with a all kinds of names of restaurants these days, aren't I.

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We've been enjoying this lovely restaurant for years.  We've always found their food and service to be terrific.  I LOVE their spinach patties (on the appetizer menu)!

ENJOY!

Valerie  :)

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Visitors' last night here, so once again hit the malecon for supper. 7 pm and no admittance, so we ended up back at il Giardino. Mixed reviews this time.

7:30 pm. Six people. No other customers. The spinach appetizers came with the meal, and they were burnt (deep-fried patties) and cold. By the way, it took 50 minutes this time for our food to arrive, which it did, all together. One large pizza for three, one arrachera, one shrimp zarandeado, and one fettucine pesto with mushrooms.

Everything... everything... was cold. Sent mine back right away. Cold shrimp with cold sides. Sent back the fettucine next; when it came back, the plate was refreshed and hot, but we realized they had served alfredo, not pesto. Pizza eaters loved the flavour, but room temp; the arrachera was still as good as the other day, but room temp. Salad was great. My reheated food was deelish.

My excitement about this place last time (food all arriving together, hot, and correct) has obviously waned a bit. We also all smell a lot like smoke this morning... .

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1 hour ago, ComputerGuy said:

Visitors' last night here, so once again hit the malecon for supper. 7 pm and no admittance, so we ended up back at il Giardino. Mixed reviews this time.

7:30 pm. Six people. No other customers. The spinach appetizers came with the meal, and they were burnt (deep-fried patties) and cold. By the way, it took 50 minutes this time for our food to arrive, which it did, all together. One large pizza for three, one arrachera, one shrimp zarandeado, and one fettucine pesto with mushrooms.

Everything... everything... was cold. Sent mine back right away. Cold shrimp with cold sides. Sent back the fettucine next; when it came back, the plate was refreshed and hot, but we realized they had served alfredo, not pesto. Pizza eaters loved the flavour, but room temp; the arrachera was still as good as the other day, but room temp. Salad was great. My reheated food was deelish.

My excitement about this place last time (food all arriving together, hot, and correct) has obviously waned a bit. We also all smell a lot like smoke this morning... .

Next time you're out after 7 pm on a Monday, check out Gosha's.  Open till 8 (and once you're there, no problem).  Delicious hot food every time. Good barbeque.  Friendly waitstaff.

Oh, and reasonable prices (IMHO)😉

 

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In this case, our visitors wanted to do the malecon and some last-minute shopping, so our location was pre-ordained. And we really wanted to have them try Guicho's, which is high on my list of go-to restaurants.

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We live just around the block and eat there often..We typically sit on the bottom level across from the Bar..never see smokers there ..there are 4 levels we never go up, too lazy. They have great Marg's and food is typically quite good..It has become our go to place..There are 2 additional places trying to make it on the North side of the main street leading to the fish places...Casa Barragan and Toca De Madero..food and hours vary..Good to fair..but quiet and typically not crowded..We liked Cozumel but they seemed to have slipped over the last few years..still have unlimited Marg's or Wine...There are several good small mom and pop places scattered around but not on the main streets, a new one is Antojitos 2  blocks North of the back of the Mercado ..On the N.E. corner of Juarez and Degollado..

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Curses! Foiled again. Five of us went on Monday night, and everything was just as described during our last visit... except this time it too 90 minutes and several trips to the front, instead of the "mere" 50 minutes. Again, everything was ice cold. Four of us ordered arrechera, and one person ordered cannelloni. You can imagine how not difficult this should have been: four slabs of meat, medium and one well-done. All arrecheras were cold, and even after two trips back to the fire, were raw in the middle. Meanwhile, several other tables who arrived long after, finished their pizzas and left. I guess the trick here is to order only pizzas.

Two massive imbroglios like that? None of us will go back.

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