Let’s raise a glass to Lisa Davis for this fabulous review of Tutto Gusto’s wines, cheeses, and more! Tutto Gusto is a new wine bar serving small plates and meals in Epcot’s Italy pavilion.
Tutto Gusto Wine Cellar in Epcot’s Italy Pavilion is the second venue of its kind in Epcot. Having experienced the joys of drinking and dining in Mexico’s La Cava del Tequila, my husband and I anxiously awaited the opening of Tutto Gusto.
We were finally able to visit in early June, one month after it officially opened.
Tutto Gusto is much larger than La Cava del Tequila, but still retains a small/intimate atmosphere. The decor and lighting help to make you feel as if you just walked into the wine tasting room of a winery in Italy. (Editor’s Note: See a photo tour of Tutto Gusto here!)
You can sit at a table in the main area by the food case and wine display, or in a more intimate setting by the fireplace. There are several table sizes to accommodate different sized groups.
On our visit, we were able to walk right in and be seated, which was a pleasant surprise considering the wait times we typically have at La Cava del Tequila. There were two greeters at the entry — whom we initially walked right by on our way in — to provide us seating options.
Since it was just the two of us, we chose a loveseat by the fireplace. On a side note, we believe we came at a great time, having arrived at 7 p.m. on a Friday, just after a severe late-afternoon thunderstorm that cleared the park.
The fireplace area is separated from the main dining area by two archways.
We were seated close to the fireplace, which was disappointingly not lit, but not unusual for the summer. Each loveseat has its own corner and individual coffee tables. Ottomans provide supplemental seating for larger groups. The furniture layout meant that as other guests arrived, our intimate dining experience was not disturbed.
After being seated, our server arrived with three menus. She told us that we could order a full meal from Tutto Italia. Being able to eat a full meal at Tutto Gusto without the limitation of a reservation time is a great option. We plan on returning to Tutto Gusto to take advantage of this, but will sit at a table that is better suited to using utensils.
However, on this trip we were set on experiencing what Tutto Gusto had to offer, so stuck to its menu and extensive wine list. The wine menu covers a wide range of Italian whites, reds, roses, and sparkling options, in addition to selections from other parts of the world. However, the menu does not include wine flights.
Our server indicated that she could bring tastes of wine we wanted to sample, but we chose instead to share quartinos of different wines to create our own flight; quartinos were a better value over individual glasses.
The quartinos here held more wine than a typical quartino. We were able to get two glasses each — four glasses total — out of each quartino!
We ended up with a “flight” of two wines. If there was a sommelier, one was not present or offered. I am not a sommelier, but will do my best here regarding the wines we enjoyed.
First, we tried the Fendo Sartanna Nero D’Avola; we are Nero fans, and always have this Syrah varietal when we see it on menus. The Nero was typical of the varietal, fruity yet with an undertone of spiciness.
We then picked a varietal we had never heard of before, just to try it: the Valpolicella. This wine was heaven. I would compare it to a grenache: able to go with everything, yet providing enough interest on your palate to be enjoyed on its own.
But this is a food blog, and not a wine blog, so on to the food! Tutto Gusto offers a selection of appetizer-portioned items, including cured meats, cheeses, sandwiches, pizzas, vegetables, pastas, and desserts.
We ordered a variety of items from the menu, mostly involving cheese! Affettati (cured sliced meats) and Formaggi (Italian cheese) are first on the menu. You can order these sliced cured meats and cheeses by the piece, in a trio of your choice, or the “Chef’s Selection” of four which provides a cheese that is not otherwise available. We decided on a trio and selected one cured meat and two cheeses.
The Cacciatorini, a cured meat from Puglia, delivered on its promise of black pepper, garlic and spices. We did not find it too fatty and it was the perfect compliment to the Nero d’Avola we drank first.
We ordered the Parmigiano Reggiano — nutty, melting-on-your-tongue, biting in your teeth, crumbling confection of a parmigiano — and La Tur to finish the trio.
The La Tur was creamy and smooth, with a texture like cream cheese and goat cheese blended together, with a sweet flavor in the beginning and slightly picante on the end. The rather dull menu description — blend of cow, goat, and sheep’s milk cheese — does not do it justice.
Next, we selected a Piccoli Piatti (small plate): Polenta Funghi e Fontina, or soft polenta, mushrooms, Fontina cheese. Our server indicated that the polenta would take a little while to make as it came from the kitchens of Tutto Italia, but we did not mind. Once it arrived, we were impressed.
Creamy polenta, topped with perfectly seasoned mushrooms, and draped with melted Fontina. These are not your grandmother’s grits!
Anticipating that the polenta would take a while, we ordered a Panini. You can choose to order a single panini or a pair for a set price. We decided on a pair: one meat and one cheese.
They came on a ciabatta baguette and were accompanied by a Caesar salad made with bitter lettuce, which was a bit strange, but found a perfect complement in the house-made Caesar dressing. (We assume it was house-made. How else would you get large chunks of parmesan cheese in your dressing?) The dressing was peppery and creamy, probably another selection taken from the menu of Tutto Italia.
To get a variety of cured meats, we ordered the Finocchiona panini, described as a Tuscan salame, which can also be ordered from the Affettati menu. This salame was infused with fennel and pepper. While not overwhelming, the corresponding anise aroma and flavor came through in every bite. We found the baguette a bit chewy, but it tasted fresh.
For the second panini we ordered the Robiola and white truffle crema. We couldn’t tell if it was the white truffle crema, or the cheese itself, or the combination, but the sandwich was excellent.
The Robiola was creamy and melting like a Brie, and tasted like fresh cream and butter made into cheese form.
Being quite full, and wanting to get gelato to enjoy during IllumiNations, we did not get a chance to enjoy the Cavatappi (“corkscrew” shaped pasta) or Dolci portions of the menu. (Editor’s Note: See a sample of cavatappi and Tutto Gusto dessert here.)
We enjoyed Tutto Gusto. It has a completely different atmosphere from La Cava del Tequila. We believe that the larger space contributes to this difference, as we never felt crowded and we were well-attended by our server.
The location is perfect for a quick bite and drink when touring the World Showcase. The menu is ample, providing enough variety to please different palates. By offering the full menu from Tutto Italia, you also can enjoy a full meal without needing a reservation.
A couple can enjoy the intimate setting by the fireplace or a larger family can be accommodated at traditional tables. Also, if you finish your experience right before IllumiNations, upon exiting Tutto Gusto you are greeted with a great spot to enjoy the show:
If you are a wine and cheese lover, this is the place for you. If not, Tutto Gusto is a great place to take a reprieve from the sun and crowds halfway through your tour of World Showcase.
Either way, Tutto Gusto is a welcome addition to eating and drinking around the World.
Lisa is a librarian for a public library in Florida. She is a Disney fan and enjoys visiting Walt Disney World often. She blogs at The Right Consistency.