Savour the simplicity
Osteria Antica Guizza: simplicity, authenticity and tradition define a place with a mission to tell the world about Conegliano Valdobbiadene DOCG
From Marina Grasso
Guizza is the name of the highest point in the vicinity of Conegliano. It sits at the entrance to San Pietro di Feletto, a strategic location since the time of the Lombards, to which the town owes its name (from the word vìzha, meaning forest). The Austro-Hungarian Empire also had a small settlement here to preside over the state-owned forest. For over a century, it was also home to Osteria Antica Guizza. Nestled amid the remnants of the ancient forest and surrounded by vineyards, this once-popular restaurant was a community hub with a shop, a bocce court and an area for dancing. Frequented by generations of locals and walkers, it was considered the perfect destination for a leisurely rest during a Sunday stroll.
It was a desire to preserve this legacy that led the four current partners, all in their forties, to decide to reopen Antica Guizza in spring 2021. After a period of closure that seemed to mark the end of an era, the partners commissioned extensive refurbishment work on the building. The work has succeeded in modernising the establishment while preserving its original charm and character, so the atmosphere has remai – ned unchanged, inspired by the partners’ sincere desire to maintain its original identity.
“I have many childhood memories with my family of this place” – says Sandro Adorni, from Conegliano – “and so we were very passionate and proud about the idea of bringing to here Prosecco Privée, the successful business we’d been operating for the past eight years in San Vendemiano. That was our first venture entirely dedicated to Conegliano Valdobbiadene Prosecco Superiore DOCG and moving our business here meant planting our roots even more firmly within the region we’ve been so passionately promoting since 2012. Before, our heart was in Conegliano Valdobbiadene; now we can truly say we’re actually in the heart of Conegliano Valdobbiadene!”.
Simplicity, authenticity and tradition are the essential elements of this place which seeks to tell the world about Conegliano Valdobbiadene DOCG through the solidly crafted period furnishings, the coloured glass balls suspended from the ceiling like so many Prosecco bubbles, and the many plants that mirror the verdant landscape to be seen from the veranda, or to be enjoyed from the sun deck in the summer.
“From Guizza, there is a splendid view of the countless hills that stretch away into the distance. They all possess a unique personality, and each one gives rise to its own distinct wine possessing a unique character”, says Sandro. “We enjoy pointing them out to our guests while they sample a glass of Prosecco Superiore, so they can learn something about the differences between wines crafted in Conegliano, San Pietro di Feletto, Pieve di Soligo or Valdobbiadene”. Because, as he says: “At Guizza you only drink Conegliano Valdobbiadene DOCG, or local products such as bottle refermented wines from small producers: we source 80% of our wines – whether sparkling, still or reds – within the province of Treviso, and every day we offer a selection of up to twenty varieties by the glass. There is no shortage of what we call our guest wines, selected from Italy and France. These often include rare finds because we love to offer our guests unique experiences. One example is our vertical tastings where guests can compare different vintages of the same Prosecco Superiore, since we have 8- and even 10-year-old vintages in our cellar. This is unconventional as it’s customary to drink Prosecco within a year of vinting. Such tastings often reveal surprising results as they showcase the vitality that Conegliano Valdobbiadene DOCG can maintain even after years in the bottle”.
Osteria Antica Guizza’s food selection also champions regional specialities with simple, authentic cuisine: a limited selection of dishes but of the highest quality, to be enjoyed just as they are. “The main dishes we offer are snacks and platters of cold meats and cheeses, porchetta, tripe, musetto (a type of pork sausage) and Raici and Fasioi (Radicchio and Beans). This is our year-round menu. We also offer a dish of the day, which is always different and always a local speciality. Our guests also have the opportunity of purcha – sing all the ingredients they taste here, because we wanted to maintain the spirit of a boutique shop. Above all, our guests who seek authenticity like to buy the wines, pickles, baked goods and similar delicacies that we select from local producers and which, to keep up with the times, are also available from our website”.
Photo credits: Mattia Mionetto
[Article originally published in Visit Conegliano Valdobbiadene magazine Spring Summer 2023. The entire magazine is available here]