The Dean Website. AKA The Exploded Micro-Family
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Gisa, at Chaoyang West Gate. DO NOT BOTHER GOING THERE! I REPEAT, DO NOT GO!

Its’ when you read stuff like this here http://travel.yahoo.com/p-travelguide-2760792-ristorante_italiano_gisa_beijing-i that you wonder how much these people got paid to write this non review.

We went to Gisa’s today. Having not been before and having an Italian recommend it I thought, cool, must be good.

This place sucks. I am actually quite angry at having been given this pretense of Italian food, this lame excuse for food and with service that was really creepy. My wife felt that they waiters were trying to ‘take our clothes off’ they were so prompt to remove dishes and so cold about it. What also got my goat is that they have a white face as part of the ‘service’ who must be feeling pretty slimy given the quality of food served. Even the pizzaioli seemed to be having a laugh at the customers’ expense when making the pizzas, as if they know they were utter crap.

Salad. Rucola. At least the rucola was fresh. I can do a better salad myself.

Pizza. Tuna pizza. DO NOT PRETEND THIS IS A GOOD PIZZA! It sucks. thin crust pizza. one thin layer of tomato sauce *with a minuscule amount of tuna blended in*. this is a joke, right? Oh sorry, a bit of oregano on top of that. You want 60 kuai for that? Sorry what is that you just went and shoved up my arse?, it did not feel nice.

Fish. Forgotten what fish it was, at least I don’t think I will get food poisoning, but the description sounded nice. at 95 kuai it should taste nice and look ok. Sorry you get a 3 out of 10 for your efforts.

Three dishes + one qingdao. 220 RMB. What did that feel worth? 40 RMB.

Will we be going back? NEVER! Should you go? NEVER!!!!

Why do people accept such crap food under some guise of western food? Are we all f-ing mad?

We did not complain at the restaurant. We ate all the food. We were hungry and it was expensive. But we feel cheated and unhappy at levels of everything.

There are lots of other good restaurants out there. Need I mention ASSAGGI? If you want good food, at a reasonable (although not cheap) price level, with a varied menu, *very* good lunch menu that often changes, really pleasant atmosphere and service (I must recommend their service, very very professional and pleasant). http://www.thatsbj.com/directory/venue/Assaggi/67 for details. Will reopen soonish, looks a bit of a mess for the mo 😉

Go to Gisa? Ma vaffanculo!

Current mood? pissed. in a way that only bad restaurants get me.

14 comments

1 Andrea { 02.14.07 at 9:11 pm }

Hi, I’m an Italian looking desperately for a good italian restaurant to take a girl out. So it must be with good atmosphere, real italian food all possibly at reasonable price. I was counting on Assaggi but just found out it’s closed. You seem an expert. Can you give me a name? I need to go friday 16th.

2 patrick { 02.14.07 at 10:39 pm }

Ciao Andrea,

Hmmm, actually I am not sure. Flattered though being called an ‘expert’, I am not, but I like good food and appreciate the effort made into making it.
I don’t do many restaurants, and would not go to the expensive ones, eg the St Regis Danieli’s or the Lufthansa centre’s/Kempinski one (la trattoria? can’t remember, hang on, mi dispiace, trattoria la gondola). I read someone raving about Danieli’s, I suspect because they were given free wine for the writeup 😉
I have been to ‘La Dolce Vita’ 8 Xindong Lu. http://www.ebeijing.gov.cn/Tour/News/t355961.htm
It is not bad, but certainly not that cheap. Expect around 200/head min, some of the dishes sound quite special ‘con tartufo nero’ you know the kind, but are actually quite disappointing for the price. One of my running friends is very fond of the place, but he is German, so maybe not the best judge 😉 I was last there nearly a year ago, and BJ being BJ it may now be a total dump. I hope not, but this is your best bet.
Buona merda as we say in French 😀

3 patrick { 02.14.07 at 11:09 pm }

pt2. if piero colucci is still at the forno, you can ask him for help, I believe he is quite friendly.

4 Andrea { 02.15.07 at 9:06 pm }

Merci patrick,

Yesterday, after a research I have decided to book my table at Cafe Metro http://www.beijingtraveltips.com/restaurants/topend/metro_cafe/metro_cafe.htm But now, as through your words you gained my trust and respect, I’m 50-50 with La dolce Vita. I ask your last opinion… Cafe Metro o La dolce vita?
I’ll then tell you how it went, and of course… I thank you from now for your kind assistance.

5 patrick { 02.16.07 at 12:10 am }

Hi Andrea, no worries, I hope I can be useful! I have not been to Cafe Metro for over three years so am really unable to say what it is like these days. Cafe Metro specialises in pasta of all kinds. You choose the kind of pasta you want – say linguine, and then a sauce to go with it, there is a wide choice from the medium to the rather expensive. So it is a good occasion to try orrechiette or farfalle or whatever kind of new pasta type that takes your fancy.
I would say it is a good place to go for a date – however it is more New York italian, so do not expect real Italian food but more a fusion style.
Like I said, last been there three years ago so it may have all changed. However they are still out there, which is as good a sign as any: they still have customers! Let me know how it goes.
Looked at the review. It has pix which at least means you can see where you are going! I am not even sure the reviewer ate there, their comments are so general and lyrical, it is more a ‘advertorial’ if you ask me.
Again, expect around 200RMB/ head although you may be able to get by for less through a choice of less expensive pasta/sauce combinations.
I guess the thing is: you want Italian food: Dolce Vita. You want a nice place to go to with your date: Metro Cafe.

6 Andrea { 02.20.07 at 12:54 pm }

Hallo Patrik,

…just wanted to tell you that Metro Cafe was quite good. The food, at least what I ordered for me (my partner was not entusiastic about the too creamy pasta), was fine. Atmosphere with service is what makes the place more valuable. Prices? Not cheap, but I would say in line with what you get. No wines below 220RMB!! (but the white Californian I tried I must admit was really good).

7 patrick { 02.20.07 at 10:51 pm }

Hi Andrea,

Cool, that is good news! Yes, atmosphere is what makes things more pleasant and helps oil the passage of the bill down the throat 😛
Re wines, well, that is inevitable. You can now find some stuff in Jenny Lou’s for under 50 kuai, but are they any good I don’t know. Expect to pay 2 to more likely 3 times that price so you knows what you pays for. Glad you enjoyed yourself!

8 Gisa :] { 04.24.07 at 9:32 am }

welllll, i just thought you ought to know… my names Gisa. isn’t that just spiffy>? you went to a horrbile pizza place called gisa and im a human being that kinda likes pizza..sometimes..named gisa. 😀

9 patrick { 04.25.07 at 11:31 am }

Just unfortunate that someone names a restaurant after you… I have no probs with pizza called Gisa, or human beings called Gisa for that matter. Just that restaurant.
Need to find time to add names of restaurants that are worth going to! (unfortunately far less than restaurants that are not worth bothering with)

10 jackee { 07.27.07 at 12:50 pm }

i also go italy but there are many restaurtant is expensive and i can’t go there but i go serveral restaurant and they are good. the food,service and offcourse wine.

11 patrick { 08.02.07 at 9:17 am }

interesting – wine SOS, your cure hangover!.. I guess that the best cure to a wine hangover is to enjoy the wine, not guzzle it! Wein auf Bier, dass rad ich Dir, aber WeinSOS auf Wein, du werdest nur nach dein Geld weinen, newo?

12 wendy { 05.26.09 at 5:22 pm }

hi patrick. I went to Gisa’s recently and I found it not so bad. I mean reasonably fresh and well prepared food. Not too expensive either. Service is a bit slow, but quite kind. Maybe they really did listen to your criticism. Carry on

13 patrick { 05.28.09 at 1:35 am }

Hi Wendy, I hope they did, but two+ years later they still exist so obviously they must have clients 😉
I just don’t like when you go to a restaurant that is non-chinese and they serve up crap like it is really good food. I don’t go back and feel the need to let others know, after all so many places get hyped reviews that don’t deserve them, when someone has an honestly bad experience it should also be talked about.
In the meantime, The Tree keeps on serving good pizza if not always quite right. And now I have a full size oven I can make my own, the main problem being getting fresh mozarella di bufala at a reasonable price!!
Thx for the comment, will carry on 😀
Cheers, Pat.

14 Patrick { 10.24.10 at 8:04 pm }

Some time later, I think Gisa has finally died it’s death. There are lots of new Italian joints opening all over the place (La Pizza, Pizza Napoli, Pomodoro are the obvious ones) but prices have gone through the roof in so many of the new joints. Beijing is trying to be a Shanghai, all upscale and trendy, but most of that is in the price, not the food.