From memory this restaurant opened in early 2006. The space was newly renovated and featured tiled flooring and wooden tables with a large central bar area. The building inside and out was freshly painted and the large glass windows overlooking the park opposite made it a picturesque choice for lunch or dinner. At the time I was pregnant so David and I could enjoy the lush scenery, busy street scape and the spacious front area of the restaurant facing the street.
In those first few months the menu was excellent, unfortunately the service, menu and the quality of food have slipped over the past few years. The menu is ok, originally it was authentically Italian with some real treats. Now it offers standard fare such as pizza and pasta as well as Czech meals. The Gusto of past offered beautifully presented meals with very fresh ingredients, now it’s… again I’ll use the word ‘ok’.
So what is the appeal of Gusto? It happily accommodates families and all their baggage: strollers, children, babies and even well behaved small dogs. Gusto has a reasonably large family dining area at the back of the restaurant (no pleasant street views unfortunately). On our last visit I counted 5 tables, one table for 6, three tables for 4 and one table for 2 plus around 5 high chairs although I’m sure you can reconfigure the space to fit larger groups, especially if you make a reservation in advance.
Within the family dining room there is a children’s play area with toys, swiveling chair, rocking horses and table and chairs set out with art supplies plus an easel for budding artists. Every time we’ve visited there has always been at least one other family with children and our daughter loves getting out of her high chair to play with them whilst we wait for our meals. As you all know its a luxury being able to dine at a relaxed pace and the set up at Gusto allows you to do so.
Facility wise you will find a sturdy wooden change table in the disabled toilet and as I mentioned above, there are at least 5 high chairs. Be warned that Gusto can prove popular during the traditional lunch hour (12 till 1pm) due to it’s central location. Prices are around 130kc for a main course and daily lunch specials average 80 CZK. There is a selection of children’s meals to choose from and on weekends they receive a free ice cream sundae. You must request this though.
Generally the venue is fresh, modern and clean and I get the feeling that the management are trying, I’m just not convinced they’ve taken the right direction. Despite the cons Gusto is a unique dining opportunity for families residing in Prague 2 and 3. But, if anyone knows of anywhere else please comment or contact us and we’ll be more than happy to try it out.
OPEN: 11am till 11pm (often features live music performances at night)
ADDRESS: Vinohradska 83, Praha 2
DIRECTIONS: Take tram number 11 to Jiriho z Podebrad or tram numbers 16 and 10 to Vinohradska Vodarna then walk down to Vinohradska or take a very short walk from metro strop Jiriho z Podebrad on the green A line.
FURTHER INFORMATION: see http://www.gusto.cz