By Larry Schunk
Folks argue the merits of the many restaurants serving pizza in Cuenca and around the world. In Cuenca, the pizza at the Mediterraneo ranks as the best by some, while others prefer Fabiano’s, Tutto Matto, La Vina, and other great places for pies.
On my first visit, I tried and liked the pizza here; the crust is thin and crispy and a wide array of toppings are listed in the menu. Most important, I’ve found, is that the pizza is always consistent.
After my first visit, however, the Mediterraneo was no longer about the pizza. I discovered the steak quite by accident, staring back at me amongst a variety of traditional Italian pasta dishes, salads, crostini, and bruschetta on the menu.
There are two preparations: one with a very nice mushroom sauce and the other grilled. I’ve had both at least twice and on all occasions, the steak was cooked exactly as I requested and was very tender and flavorful. While I was on a low-carb diet, I asked that they substitute the potatoes for a larger portion of vegetables, which they happily did. The vegetables served with the steak are generally served cold by design, but they can be warmed if that’s your preference. One thing that’s not on the menu, but may be available, is a small side salad.
I haven’t yet run the menu at Mediterraneo because I got stuck on the steak. On future visits I hope to break out of my rut and try several of the other inviting choices that are available, such as some of the large and tasty-looking entrée salads with a great dressing, and the large cannelloni, which comes hot and bubbly, with a very good sauce.
Service by the waiters, attired in black, is always excellent and a visit to the table by the chef to see that you’re pleased is typical.
Calle Honorato Vasquez gets crowded after 8 p.m. and parking becomes difficult despite a couple of parking helpers working for tips. Earlier, there’s usually ample street parking and there’s also a large public parquedero one block east. If you’re coming by cab, the Mediterraneo is on Honorato Vasquez between Presidente Borrero and Luis Cordero. While close to everything, this location is somewhat off the beaten path, so most folks don’t find it by wandering by.
Mediterraneo, Honorato Vasquez
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