I eat so often at Don Costanzo that I thought it was about time that I did a little review update to fully express my love for this unassuming little italian.
The Staff...where do I even start. They are without doubt the best staff in Glasgow...if not Scotland, nae the world! They welcome you like family from the very first visit and once you are family you are always welcomed as such. The Don buzzes around making everyone feel special and adored, I once read somewhere that the Don has never met a sentence he didn't like and I couldn't agree more. He will often pull up a chair towards the end of the night and shoot the breeze with you. Ilia (the Costanzos Daughter) and Jo run the front of house brilliantly and will greet you with big smiles and ensure my glass of Rose is never running too low. I love the food here but it is without doubt the staff that tip it up to being one of my stand out restaurants in Glasgow.
The food...oh lord the food! It is gorgeous! In all the times I have eaten here I have never had a single dish I didn't like. When you sit down you will be handed a menu, my advice is ignore it and order from the specials. Don't get me wrong the menu is fab and loaded with seriously tempting pasta dishes but the specials are where the real gems are. While chewing over the menu picking your dishes you will be given a basket of warm bread to enjoy..my top tip even if you are on a carb free diet just eat the warm bread, it'll be worth it I promise.
My favourite starter at the moment is thinly sliced veal topped with a tuna mayo sauce and roasted red pepper (sorry I can't remember the italian name). Now I understand that this sounds disgusting but it is insanely good. I even had my Dad try it when we visited last weekend and he thought it was delicious too . This is a must try if you visit.
For my main I almost always order the same thing and yet again it is another special - the Lemon Sole, which the Costanzo gets fresh from the market every morning. More often that not it will be on the specials board, it is served with big beautiful juicy king prawns and cooked in olive oil. To me this dish is perfection on a plate. It always tastes incredible with the fish and prawns cooked perfectly. With this I will always order a side of sauté potatoes and a portion of their AMAZING zucchini fritters. The fritters are so good, they are light and crispy and so flavoursome.
Dessert at the dons consists of one things and one thing only - Tiramisu. This is made fresh on a Tuesday by Ilia and is without doubt the best tiramisu I have ever eaten. It is light and creamy with just the right amount of coffee kick. I have been known to nip down with a tupper wear and get them to sell me a few bits to eat at home. There is no one I know who doesn't immediately love this dessert once they try it...frankly if you don't like it questions need to be asked about your taste buds :-P
Incase you haven't worked it out I love this place, it is so good that they don't even advertise, everything is done by word of mouth and it's still full every weekend. If you are looking for a real hidden gem in the city this is it. In my opinion they don't come any better that Don Costanzo.
Today the lovely Pammi G introduced me to Don Costanzo's, and I loved it!
Hidden away in a basement off Woodside Crescent lies this homely and welcoming Italian restaurant!
The menu is moderately priced, though they do offer a "Business Lunch" Monday - Friday, from 12.00 - 14.15. With 2 courses for £11 this is not a bad deal.
Today I had a warm garden vegetable salad to start. It was delicious with courgettes, carrots, and green beans cooked to perfection, with a lovely oil dressing and parsley and lemon. I love this sort of food; simple dishes that bring out the flavours of the ingredients without too much fuss or intervention - often only enjoyed when in mainland Europe.
For main I opted for dish of the day which was Penne Amatriciana. Tomato, bacon, onion, and chilli - I devoured this tasty dish!
Pammi and I also shared a side of Zucchini Fritte - delicious courgettes wrapped in a light crispy batter - very moreish!
I have been lusting over pictures of Don Costanzo's Tiramisu posted by Pammi G on Twitter, so was disappointed when I didn't have room for dessert at lunchtime. However, the Don wrapped up a portion for me to take home and enjoy. I have just this minute finished my portion of Tiramisu, and it tastes as good as it looks. Fluffy, light mascarpone cream with chocolate and coffee soaked sponge - this is a winning combination for me, and the Don's is one of the nicest I have tried. I love a splash of rum through my Tiramisu, but couldn't really taste any booze in this one?
I had my 1 year old with me today, and though Don Costanzo's don't have a kids menu as such, the Don happily whipped up a generous serving of Penne with Napoli sauce for my little one. She gobbled the whole plate up in record time - so a big thumbs up from my little food critic too! ;)
I throughly enjoyed my lunch at Don Costanzos, and look forward to visiting again. A lovely venue with lovely staff and super food! Don Costanzo's - I salute you!
Okay - Firstly I'll state my score is a 3.5, but I can't pop the half star on!
Came here on the back of my fellow Yelpers raving reviews recently. We booked in for 5:30 on a Saturday evening, which meant we were the first people in, as they were still setting up for evening service from opening at 5pm.
Very warm welcome and ushered us both in to a table near the far end, overlooking Charing Cross. Offered a drink & the lady recommended we start with a glass of prosecco, which was delicious. However, no offer of water for the table.
Don himself came out to reel off the specials. I went for the meat stuffed pepper. As everything else on the starters were cheese based or soup, Fiona stuck with the bread. Sadly, the butter was rock solid just out of the fridge. Not the end of the world, but it is one of my pet 101 hates having rock hard cold butter in a catering wrapper.
The stuffed pepper was nice. Sweet flavour from the pepper, but nothing really stand out from the meatball inside.
For mains, I went with the Veal chop and Fiona, the tiger prawns with rice. I was graciously offered a bib, which I took up! Now this veal is big, but mainly due to the size of the t-bone and once you trim off all the fat, it's a fairly reasonable piece of meat. The flavour of the gravy was simply sensational and the meat, beautifully tender. The Prawn and rice though, just wasn't that stand out as a dish. More prawns would have been better & as Fiona said, felt like something she could cook easily enough at home & she doesn't cook.
The sides of garlic spinach was disappointing. It just tasted of wet cold spinach. The zucchini (courgette) fritters were lovely, if not a little al dente.
We decided to go for dessert & I had to get the tiramisu. It was brilliant! Fiona tried the special of poached pears with a caramelised sauce and ice cream. Now whenever pears are poached, you have to - HAVE to, remove the skins. These had the skins left on & it just leaves a grainy taste with each bite and ruins the point of poaching.
So, one starter, 3 drinks, 2 mains and 2 desserts & that was £82 before a tip. The outstanding part of this place, is the warm friendly family welcome. It's one of the best we have witnessed, so I would give that 4 stars alone. However, apart from the veal and tiramisu, nothing else really blew me away. As for value for money, I don't think it was, as we both felt hungry afterwards. Would I try this place again? Yes, but it will be for the service first.
You Gotta Eat Here - For Sure! :-D
I'd never even heard of Don Costanzo before Pammi G told me about it so I was excited to read her rave review and have the chance to check it out. It's tucked along Woodside Terrace and you'd be best off checking the map on Yelp before you head there, lest you head to completely the wrong place. No bother though, we found it eventually!
It's a basement restaurant but it has a large windows at either end so it's not dark and dim like you might expect. I really like the decor - to me, it was like stepping back in time but in a tasteful, charming way. There's loads of photos all over the walls and you can tell it's had a lot of love put into it.
I had a glass of rosé while looking over the menu which was really tasty - so tasty that I couldn't resist a second small glass with my main. For starters I had the caprese salad which was served with a whopping chunk of buffalo mozzarella. Everything was so fresh, light and tasty that it was totally perfect in its simplicity. I loved the generous slices of whopping huge tomato and even though the mozzarella was massive, it was a refreshing starter.
For main I had the veal milanese with pasta. About 3 years ago (possibly more), Graeme had this dish at an Italian restaurant and I've had food envy ever since. I never forget food envy. Mine was served with penne napolitana but you could opt for a spicier spaghetti if you wanted. The veal was delicious, soft and buttery and the pasta was heavenly. I got a very generous dusting of parmesan (the way I like it). I did struggle to finish mine though (I had to save room for dessert).
The tiramisu was wonderful, soft, fluffy, boozy and the lovely richness of coffee. I couldn't finish my portion but they happily put it in a ramekin for me to take home - so lovely.
The bill was pretty pricey - around £40 per person, but then that was for a 3 course meal with drinks so it's actually not too bad. My favourite thing about here (apart from the food) was definitely the service. The staff are so lovely and welcoming that you really do feel like you're part of their family. Nothing was too much trouble or difficult for them, and we got really mouthwatering descriptions of the menu from the Don himself. He would pop out from the kitchen every now and then to see how we were doing, and made sure he came by to say goodbye as he had to be up early for the fishmarket in the morning.
A charming hidden gem in Woodlands - I can't wait to return.
Had it not been recommended by one of my colleagues, I would never have found this place, but I'm so glad I did. Hidden away underground in Woodlands, Don Constanzo is a fantastic, friendly and family-run restaurant, bursting with personality, whilst oozing elegance from its delicious dishes.
We were instantly welcomed by the charming owner, who was more than happy to cater for our group's gluten-free and vegan requirements and even whipped up off-menu dishes to suit each diner.
Among the dishes served to our table were courgette fritters, the most delicate and delicious aubergine lasagne and home-made ice cream truffles, generously topped with hazelnut liqueur. The food was glorious and everyone who works here talks with such knowledge and passion about the food that it's clear you're in good hands.
Fantastic resturaunt.Atmosphere warm relaxing and very authentic.Food first class service delightful, prices brilliant.A must to visit.
Don Costanzo is a newly opened Italian Restaurant located in the basement of 13 Woodside Crescent, Glasgow G3. Formerly the location of Nick Nairn's restaurant, it has been transformed into a warm, homely welcoming restaurant where you can enjoy the best of authentic, home cooked Italian cuisine. Don Costanzo was opened after the closure of The Caprese in Buchanan Street, a long established restaurant of 26 years, owned and run by Costanzo Cacace and his family. Costanzo gained the reputation of offering the best of the best to the best of the best. Clientele from across the globe, famous and not so famous enjoyed what Costanzo offered in the Caprese, fantastic food in a great atmosphere and those people have returned to Don Costanzo for more of the same. Using only the best of ingredients and produce, and with an impressive wine list to suit every taste, a trip to Costanzo's new place will not disappoint. Easily reached from both the city centre and west end with good parking.
Established in 2011.
Opened by Costanzo and family after the closure (and demolition!) of The Caprese Restaurant in Buchanan Street, a long established restaurant in the heart of Glasgow. Costanzo opened The Caprese in 1984 and built up a loyal following of customers who have since joined him at his new establishment in Woodside Crescent.
Costanzo is the larger than life owner of Don Costanzo. Born and raised in Capri, Italy, Costanzo met and married a Glasgow girl which is what brought him to Scotland. Costanzo managed various restaurants around Glasgow including the Spaghetti House and O Sole Mio before venturing out on his own with The Caprese. After 26 years of running The Caprese with his family, Costanzo moved to Don Costanzo in Woodside Crescent, a mere 5 minutes drive from his old place. Costanzo continues to run Don Costanzo as he did with The Caprese, a welcoming, homely atmosphere with authentic Italian food.
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