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“I feel really at home here in the restaurant. I feel comfortable. That’s the atmosphere we’ve created.”

Carla is a waitress who has been working at Casa Gangotena for four years

My family was very united growing up. My brothers, my mum, and my dad, we used to share everything. My brother was a great cook…

My mother is from Cuenca so we always had mote at home, mote pillo, which is mote with scrambled eggs for breakfast. That’s very typical in Cuenca. We’d also have guinea pig at home, that’s very traditional for us. We were united as a family then, just as we are now. We grew up in the Recreo sector of the city when we were little, in the south.

Quito has become much more modern in my time living here. The population has increased, and there have been gastronomic changes: both welcoming international food and improving the Ecuadorian options.

The team in Hotel Casa Gangotena.
Carla is part of Casa Gangotena’s team.

But now, here at Casa Gangotena, we’re focused on Ecuadorian dishes and Ecuadorian products – 80 percent of all ingredients here are Ecuadorian, even in the cocktail menu.

I really love the chicken in squash seeds, it’s really special, really tasty. And the fish ceviche is really good here too, it’s been marinated and it’s from the region of Manabi, so it has peanuts in it with avocado. It’s a great combination.

There is some cuencana food on the menu, there’s mote pillo, and it also has flavors of fritada (a typical fried pork dish).

Casa Gangotena is a lovely hotel, small and comfortable. It’s a boutique and has really high standards of service.

I love talking to guests, the Chileans, North Americans, some from Japan. It’s a new experience for them because they feel like they’re at home.

When they do a new cocktail menu they do a demonstration of all the new drinks, the same with the food. And the restaurant menu has almost totally changed recently. From the menu, before there’s only the locro potato soup – because people love it – and the home-made empanadas have stayed. There are now new flavors, techniques, and ingredients.

And we have to know everything about the dish.

I feel really at home here in the restaurant. I feel comfortable. That’s the atmosphere we’ve created.

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