10 N Market St, Asheville, NC | Directions 2880135.596247 -82.550741
Mon. - Thu. 5:30pm - 10pm;Fri. - Sat. 5:30pm - 11pm;Sun. 5:30pm - 9pm
Very good – Vincenzo's was the last dinner of our vacation in Asheville. We were glad to have stumbled upon this little gem. We had learned on this trip to be glad of places that posted menus out front so you knew what you were getting into ahead of time. Despite a large portion of the menu being a little high-end for our budget, there was plenty in the totally affordable range, and I had my heart set on the cheap pasta menu anyway.
The band for the evening was setting up, so we opted to sit upstairs, further from the noise. From the second floor, it was just loud enough for background music, which was perfect.
They had a reasonable beer selection, not extensive, but pretty well selected. Can't say about the wine list - it was there, but I rarely bother to look at them.
Waiter was a little odd at first, very formal & stiff, but he warmed up and we got to talking to him about finding local punk shows.
The caprese salad was nice, not spectacular. The mozzarella was decent, the tomatoes kind of bland. I'd never had balsamic drizzled on it before, which was tasty.
The Gnocchi Al Emelia-Romagna was amazing. It was too good not to share, but I got a little protective of it as my husband kept snitching it. In the end, he finished it off for me, even the small plate made for a huge meal.
The Pollo-Arabiatta was also very good, just a touch spicy.
We were too full for dessert, but couldn't go out for vacation Italian food and not get cannolis. We got some to go and enjoyed them later that night. The best cannolis I've ever had (from Mama Louisa's in Flagstaff, AZ, if you're interested) set the bar pretty high. So comparatively, we'll go with "pretty darn good" on Vincenzo's cannolis. Not Mama's, but not bad.
Really, the fifth star is just for that gnocchi. It was awe inspiring.
Typical Italian Food, Mediocre Service – This place is average, but not great. Walked in on a Monday night around 8pm and had to wait for a table, so I guess the tourists like it. Our waiter was just a tad short of being totally disinterested in us. Had to wait while he acknowledged us, brought drinks, dishes for the mussel shells (we made a display on the other dishes on the table while we waited). One appetizer (a special) was great, the other (fried calamari) was heavy on breading and verging on cold. For pasta we had gnocchi and it was terrific. The entres (1 veal, 1 chicken)were good, but nothing we hadn't had elsewhere and had done better. We were pleased with the wine and beer list. They have live music almost every night in the downstairs portion and it was terribly loud, so would recommend you sit upstairs, which we did, where you cannot hear the music. Have had better Italian food for less money elsewhere.
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