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Zorrito Von Quintiero, the pioneer of Las Cañitas who vindicates the bodegón: "Eating well is enough for many of us"


Rocker and former restaurant owner, he upholds the values ​​of 'a meal less confusing than today'. It is Saturday at noon at the Casa Vigil winery in Mendoza, where an immersive experience about the tomato universe is organized. Dozens of chefs, researchers, producers and journalists participate, chatting quietly around a long table. From the head, the voice of Zorro Von Quintiero breaks in unabashedly, proposing Mendoza as the gastronomic capital of Argentina and ending with: "Italy is pesifie

It is Saturday at noon at the Casa Vigil winery in Mendoza,

where an immersive experience about the tomato universe is organized.

Dozens of chefs, researchers, producers and journalists participate, chatting quietly around a long table.

From the head,

the voice of Zorro Von Quintiero breaks in unabashedly,


Mendoza as the gastronomic capital of Argentina and ending with: "Italy is pesified!".

At 57 years old

, one of our most transversal musicians -he has played with Soda Stereo, Charly García, Ratones Paranoicos and many more-

has an easy laugh and an intact rocker impetus.

He came to these coordinates to give a show with Hilda Lizarazu and Fernando Samalea and incidentally entertain with his native tribe, the gastronomic.

It is that in addition to having been one of the promoters

of the Las Cañitas pole

in the mid-nineties with the disruptive Soul Café,

Zorro has a cooking lineage.

A grandfather with that trade in Calabria and a father who migrated to find his homeland in the Buenos Aires canteen.

Zorro's praise of still life food

"If the simple is rich, it is twice rich," says Zorro Von Quintiero.

Photo: Martin Bonetto.

The rocker chef fulfilled his "gastronomic fantasies" over and over again.

After Soul Café, he carried out Nina Wok, Voodoo Bar, Super Soul and Bruni, the last to close

in an attractive corner of Bajo Belgrano that Kona Corner now occupies, the new restaurant of Narda Lepes and Inés de los Santos.

Last year, when they were dismantling their last culinary bastion, a publication that they made on their networks

in which

they protested the numerous obstacles

experienced by those who want to carry out this type of business in Argentina

went viral .

“It was crazy, they called me from all means.

I stopped talking because they wanted to make it look like something political when

my criticism was against a whole system that doesn't work, ”she warns.

And although he acknowledges that with the closure of Bruni he was left without his "stop", he lives up to his nickname and does not lose the (gastronomic) tricks that these days go by the glowing praise of the kitchen he knew as a boy and in

his first youth.

“You have to vindicate

that still life, canteen food from before that was less sophisticated but also less confusing than now.

Today they recite the steps they did to prepare the dishes.

There are a lot of hype in the food world,” she says.

The Fox Von Quintiero in the immersive experience "Del Tomate" at Casa Vigil (Mendoza).

And he advocates a balance between the old and the new: “

Sometimes in the desire to have the strangest and craziest products, nobody understands anything.

I like it but there are many people who do not want that.

She is not prepared to receive this information and she is not interested either because she is not

a foodie

”, She assures.

-What old restaurants do you miss?


I liked Hermann because he was intellectual, rocker.

He was in Santa Fe and Armenia.

At one time he used to go to the Open Plaza too.

He went down to eat with Charly

(García) at three in the morning and they were all there: he opened 24x7!

That's where the idea of ​​recording the Argentine anthem arose because they had a piano.

I don't like this Buenos Aires, where there is no late-night kitchen.

You go to eat and you have that feeling that at twelve everyone is in a hurry and wants to go home.

They don't even close at one o'clock anymore…

I also miss the canteens that are a seventies format, almost from the late 60s.

Although some survived like Rondinella in Palermo.

Places without decoration, a room with just a tube light.

Sometimes what "does not have a wave" does have a wave.

For many of us it is enough to eat well.

The important thing is to see the price-quality ratio.

That is why the neighborhood grill is respected.

"The important thing is to see the price-quality ratio," says Zorro Von Quintiero.

Photo: Martin Bonetto.

-As the promoter of the gastronomic pole of Las Cañitas, you burst in with a very different proposal...


the kitchen of the 80s somehow began to end when I opened the Soul Café with Luis Morandi

who is now the owner of BASA and Gran Danzón.

There was a whole

set of places

like Pizza Piola, Filo, Danilo Ferraz with his grilled pizza

that cut the faces of 80s restaurants

, such as the classic Munich in Recoleta.

This arises from the fact that going to eat is entertaining. 

Today gastronomy is



, spending money in a restaurant today is like spending it on a recital or a play

-That's why there are also fashionable places where the setting seems more important than the food...

-For me, food is the most important thing.

I understand that

there are places where the social aspect is more important than the gastronomic aspect,

but if I go to one like this, I prefer to have a drink and not eat.

The wave can not replace good food.

And that

I had a restaurant that was beautiful like the Soul Café

that when it burst in was very different, all red, very funkero, soulero... That didn't exist.


we also had a culinary background that gave us a flat.

My old man was a bartender.

He owned Cervecería López

together with some Galicians and later had his canteens.

-Cervecería Lopez has just turned 80 and continues to be a place very loved by many people.

What memories do you have of that place?

Zorro Von Quintiero with Charly García and Diego Maradona at the Soul Café in the nineties.


People still love it because there were plates and not "plates".

The difference between the plates and the small plates is the small plate (laughs).

Those huge picadas with parked Argentinian raw ham that had to be boned.

They served you the sopresatta, a plate of stuffed olives, gruyere cheese, French fries, the antipasto... There was rich bread, mignon from a good neighborhood bakery.

People queued up to eat, the terrace was full.

The food had nothing to do with today's breweries that give you hamburgers…

And they had the coldest beer in Buenos Aires.

It was served on a streamer to ice bar.

In the ball or in the chopp the foam was dripping.

Now where is the foam dripping?

In none!

-What do you think of the craft beer movement and the proliferation of so many different styles?


there was only one beer.

Today there are 100 smoothies with different flavors.

The beer is Lager… Then there are the IPA variations, more or less perfumed.

But the beer that I like is the classic hyper-cold Lager even if it's winter.

In this return to the gastronomic origins that Zorro claims, a trip in that precise direction had a lot to do with it: “

When I went for the first time to visit Calabria, my father's land, it was like finishing watching the movie that they had told me all over the world. life.

Food is very important to the Tanos.

The same thing happened to Julieta Oriolo when she went ”.

The Soul Café in the nineties.

Silvio Quintiero arrived in Argentina at the age of 15 to work as a construction worker, with time he ventured into gastronomy.

“My old man never saw his parents again because he was sad to return to Calabria.

And the food gave him vibes.

The same thing happened to me -also with music, right?- but cooking, being involved with the flavor and entertaining gave me a vibe”.

Zorro says that

just as others meditate, he cooks.

It is his secret antidote for his mental health: “It gives me peace of mind.

You have to be patient in the kitchen.

Go snacking on a formaggio, prosciutto and turn off the TV.

Put on a good playlist, have a vermouth and there you do cook for your family, someone you want to entertain”.

-And what do you like to cook the most?

-I like the kitchen of the grandmothers.

That's why I always have boiled chard to make it sautéed or in an Easter cake.

Doña Petrona's kitchen: that has to resurface.

The simple if it is rich is twice rich.

But mine is pasta.

I love that…

Another thing that

must be vindicated is the pasta factory

because just as I defend the canteen firearm, I like the ravioli from traditional pasta factories such as Amelia (Avenida Boedo 1639) which are the ones that were sold to restaurants in the years 70.

"Before there was only one beer. Today there are 100 smoothies with different flavors," says Zorro Von Quintiero.

Photo: Martin Bonetto.

Also the typical Argentine mozzarella and ham sorrentino.

Although in this case the richest is from Mar del Plata, the one from the Neapolitan Trattoria that they make with a dough that melts in your mouth.

-Is there any possibility that you will be part of the gastronomic industry again?

-I had many gastronomic fantasies and fulfilled a few.

For me

it would be good to have something small, for few people and cook myself.

If someone is going to get into this business, be careful with the size because it really is a mess to have a lot in this area.

Perhaps you cannot generate a good income but I would like to give myself the pleasure of cooking for a few, doing it well and giving people pleasure.

It could be the cook of a place where you come from and I cook what you want.

Something "attended by its own musicians".

There are people who ask me for ideas.

In fact

, a team that develops new businesses offered to hire me

for that because we are at a time of many openings.

It is no longer

enough to have a nice and well-located place to be really good.

-And you think to accept?

-I am evaluating it because it is difficult for me to work for people who hire you and have a boss.

The truth is that there is only one boss that I always liked to have: and his name is Charly García!

look too

The still lifes that celebrity chefs choose and their favorite dishes

In Parque Chacabuco, a historic tavern that was revived with the best of Buenos Aires cuisine

Source: clarin

All news articles on 2023-03-22

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