Out and About: Vinia Wine Bar + Kitchen in Winter Park Offers Delicious Menu of Italian and Brazilian-Inspired Dishes

Vinia Wine Bar + Kitchen in Winter Park

Located near Hannibal Square in Winter Park is a bistro-sized restaurant/wine bar called Vinia Wine + Kitchen, and we were recently invited to experience the menu.

The restaurant offers a variety of seating from curbed booths to a mixture of high-top and regular tables, along with bar seating, and a couple of outdoor sidewalk tables, and we arrived right after Vinia opened for its dinner and Happy Hour had just started, which drew in quite a few people to the bar.

The menu, created by owner Fabio Perricelli, is heavily influenced by his Italian roots, with some Brazilian nods, courtesy of his wife Paula.

My guest and I decided to start with the Happy Hour food menu, and ordered two of the offerings: the housemade Brazilian Cheese Bread and the Empanada.

The happy hour serving of the Brazilian cheese bread included three pieces of the bread, which had a creamy cheesy center, and was served with both a white wine cream sauce. The warm cheese-filled bread bites paired with the sauce was just delicious, but you might want to upgrade to the appetizer serving of this dish because it comes with an extra dipping sauce of guava, which made for a lovely sweet-savory flavor…plus, you get more of the cheese bread to enjoy.

Vinia Wine + Kitchen -  Brazilian cheese bread

We also tried the beef and cheese Empanada off the Happy Hour menu, which also came with dipping sauces. It had a nice flaky crust and just a little heat but to add flavor not to burn your mouth. The chimichurri and spicy oil dippers paired nicely with the empanada’s flavor.

Vinia Wine + Kitchen -  empanada

The Happy Hour menu also offered several wines by the glass and bottle, and beers, for those that drink. We decided to go with glasses of blood-orange San Pellegrino, which paired nicely with our food.

Vinia Wine + Kitchen -  san pellegrino

The Empanada was so delicious, my guest chose to have it again as her appetizer as part of the special 3-course offering that included an appetizer, entree, and dessert.

The difference between the Happy Hour menu version and the appetizer is that the Empanada comes with a side salad, as well as the dipping sauces.

Vinia Wine + Kitchen -  empanada

I decided to go vegetarian with my appetizer, and chose the roasted Zucchini and Yellow Squash Ratatouille, a delightful stack of both vegetables in a light olive oil and herb sauce topped with a bright tomato confit. It’s a great plant-based option for diners.

Vinia Wine + Kitchen -  Zucchini and Yellow Squash Ratatouille

For my entree, I chose the Sformato, a dish featuring Italian sausage, artichokes, and Fontina cheese gratin, served with a sun-dried tomato terrine. The rich creaminess of the main dish was complemented by the acidity of the terrine.

Vinia Wine + Kitchen -  Sformato

My guest went with the dish Fabio said was the most popular on the menu; housemade Gnocchi topped with 24-hour braised Oxtail with au jus. The gnocchi were perfect pillows of dough accented by a quick sear to give the outside a light crunchiness, and the Oxtail was like a perfest pot-roast style of beef on top. My guest said it was the best gnocchi dish she’d ever had, and I agree, it was outstanding.

Vinia Wine + Kitchen -  housemade Gnocchi topped with 24-hour braised Oxtail with au jus

We finished a selection of desserts that were just the right size to finish the meal. She had the Affogato, a vanilla gelato served with fresh-brewed caramel-flavored espresso to pour over the gelato.

I went with the Pot de crème, another guest favorite, and it was easy to see why. The chocolate custard was light and creamy, with sea salt flakes to provide contrast, and topped with a dollop of creme chantilly.

Vinia Wine + Kitchen -  desserts

It was a wonderful meal complemented by live music towards the end, since we dined on a Thursday, which is when it is offered.

Fabio said he changes up the menu a few times a year to keep things fresh, and I liked that he made a point to always have several plant-based dishes, as well as gluten-free, on the menu.

Vinia Wine Bar + Kitchen proved to be a popular place to dine, so I recommend making a reservation, which can be done on the Vinia website. You’ll also find all the menus there.

Vinia is located at 444 W New England Ave, Ste 119, Winter Park, FL 32789. They are open at 5pm Tuesday through Saturday, and are closed on Sundays and Mondays.

Our take: the food was delicious, the service was friendly, and the atmosphere was lively but not loud. I also enjoyed the purple tones and all the art on the walls, which looked like it was from local artists and for sale.

I look forward to returning later in the year to give the menu another taste. I recommend giving Vinia a try, as well.

Vinia Wine + Kitchen -  interior

Disclaimer: CSO was hosted for this visit. As always, my opinion is honest, and my own.


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