***Notice: Il Vesco Vino is no longer in business***
Cuisine: Authentic Italian
Restaurant Features: Patio Dining
Location: St Paul, MN
Address: 242 W. 7th Street Saint Paul, MN 55102 (651) 222 – 7000
Atmosphere: Located in a refurnished Victorian Mansion in the middle of a residential neighborhood, Il Vesco Vino is a romantic little Italian restaurant and bar. There are three stories to the restaurant, with many private dining areas throughout the rooms of this former mansion.
This is just one of many seating areas….
There is also a beautiful patio adjacent to the building, complete with gardens, a bar, and a wood-fire brick oven.
Menu: Appetizers include Arancini (fried rice balls stuffed with peas, mint & fresh lemon), Eggplant Parmigian, and Fried Calamari.
Antipasti that are served cold include Spicy Garlic & Rosemary Olives, Caprese, Romaine, Garden Greens, Panzanella, Roasted Beets with Arugula, Tuna Crudo, Carpaccio (thinly sliced beef), and Salumi & Cheese. Antipasti that are served hot include Tomato and Sage Soup, Fried Polenta with Peas, Grilled Sausage with Roasted Peppers, House-made Meatballs, and Mediterranean Steamed Mussels.
Pasta Dishes include Puttanesca (spaghetti with olives and anchovy), Ziti, Lemon Risotto, Gnocchi with Porcini Mushrooms, Tortelloni with Shrimp, Ravioli with Lamb, Bucatini all’ Amatriciana, Spicy Linguine with Shrimp.
Entrees (Secondi) include Pork Piccata, Fire-Roasted Chicken, Grilled Salmon with Artichoke, Grilled Lamb Steak, Halibut, Seared Scallops, and New York Strip Steak.
Desserts include Tiramisu, Cheesecake, Chocolate Fudge Cake, Creme Brulee, Chocolate Stuffed Pistachio donuts, Limoncello Frozen Custard, Warm Chocolate Cake, and Vanilla Gelato.
Price guide: Appetizers $9-13 Antipasti $ 5-18 Pasta $13-19 Entrees $18-28 Desserts $7-8
What We Ordered: My companions and I stopped at Il Vesco Vino on a Saturday afternoon between a wedding we had just attended and the reception which was scheduled to start a few hours later. None of us had eaten all day and we needed just a little something to tide us over until we were able to eat dinner at the reception.
Along with several really good cocktails, we received a basket of fresh bread. It was thick, had a nice crust and was served with olive oil on the side for dipping.
We also ordered the Calamari which came seasoned with lemon and sea salt. Our order consisted of both battered and fried rings and tiny little squid with tentacles still attached. Both were very good, the texture of the rings was tender and the little squids had a crispier texture. Two of my companions had never had calamari before and were slightly reluctant to try it, but both thought it was really good.
Service: There were only just a few other tables being occupied on the patio where my companions and I sat, and the service was excellent. All of our needs and requests were fulfilled in a timely manner.
Overall Impression: A cool, romantic place for an authentic Italian meal. Many wine and specialty drink offerings along with great special during Happy hour make it a great place to visit after work or for a romantic dinner.