This weekend, the Casa Gangotena welcomed a special guest, Lidia Bastianich.
Lidia is a well-known face on television in the United States, and the author of several best-selling books about cuisine – and Italian cuisine in particular. Lidia has married her two passions in life – her family and food – and is the chef/owner of several acclaimed restaurants.
She was holidaying in Ecuador and visited Quito on her return from the enchanted Galápagos Islands. She kindly accepted the invitation of Gaby Naranjo, one of her former employees and GM at Del Posto and now our Food & Beverage Manager, to dine with us and share some of her enthusiasm for all things culinary.
We divided the invitation into two. On the first night, Ecuadorian rising star chef Juan Sebastian Perez, prepared her menu, while on the second, it was our very own Andrés Dávila’s turn.
Both prepared wondrous tasting menus for Lidia, featuring these innovative chefs’ takes on modern Ecuadorian cuisine, firmly rooted in top quality products sourced from as-local-as-possible suppliers.
Juan Sebastian created a menu that played with the notion of the four distinct geographical and culinary worlds of Ecuador. Chef Dávila meanwhile, served signature dishes of langoustines from the Galápagos, sea bass, llama, steamed leaf-wrapped traditional tamales, hayacas, and humitas, all paired with wonderful wines from South America.
Delighted with the restaurant’s menu, her room, and the team, Lidia came away from Quito a fan forever and declared Casa Gangotena a “world-class hotel”.