Acquaviva Winery and Ristorante: A Taste of Italy, in a New Location

You don’t have to travel to Italy to enjoy an authentic meal with award-winning wines. At this Batavia extension of the beloved winery, the menu is bursting with Italian flavors.

Acquaviva Winery and Ristorante’s new location in Batavia sets an inviting atmosphere where touches of Italy blend with a menu built upon traditional fare.

Authentic Italian cuisine and award-winning wines converge at Batavia’s Acquaviva Winery and Ristorante, 1900 Mill St. An extension of the company’s winery and seasonal dining room in Maple Park, this Batavia attraction focuses solely on consistent dining experiences six days a week, year-round.

After years of serving diners in downtown Batavia, Acquaviva, led by owners Joe and Vito Brandonisio, is fully settled into this new location off Randall Road.

The standalone building transports visitors to southern Italy, right from the outset as exposed stone, wooden accents and soft lighting set the mood. Inside, burgundy seats and black tablecloths meet white marble columns and black stone countertops.

The menu is a testament to culinary expertise, with a selection of Italian-inspired dishes that are crafted with locally sourced ingredients that burst with flavor. From antipasti to fresh seafood, the menu tempts many tastes.

Appetizers start with the crispy Calamari Fritti Dorati, served with lemon and marinara sauce. The flavorful Carciofini al Forno is made with artichoke hearts sauteed with garlic, onions and Italian cheeses.

Pasta is, of course, the star of Acquaviva’s menu. There’s the Homemade Gnocchi, bathed in a creamy vodka sauce and topped with fresh mozzarella, and the Rigatoni Bosciola, served with beef tenderloin tips and mushrooms in a savory tomato sauce.

These pasta dishes are specially crafted to pair with Acquaviva’s own handcrafted wines, with suggestions labeled right on the menu. Match a gnocchi or the seafood-rich Zuppa di Mare with the dry Vitino, which blends several kinds of grapes. Or, pair up a rigatoni with the full-bodied Don Giuseppe, a dry red wine.

The seafood is its own star. Delicate flavors mix with the Salmone al Forno, a baked Atlantic salmon that’s encrusted with panko and drizzled with a lemon butter sauce, then served with sauteed vegetables and garlic mashed potatoes. The Gamberoni Gratinato features four jumbo shrimp baked to perfection with a garlic butter panko topping.

For meat lovers, there’s no better than the New York Strip, 16 ounces of grilled perfection served aside sauteed vegetables and roasted red bliss potatoes. This one also pairs well with the red Don Giuseppe.

No meal at Acquaviva would be complete without sampling at least one of these award-winning wines. Each of the 17 varieties comes from Illinois-hardy grapes grown on Acquaviva’s 85-acre vineyard in Maple Park. Blending a truly Midwestern taste with a touch of Italian tradition, these wines satisfy many tastes. There are sweet tastes like the sparkling Bolle, the fruity Sangria or the delicate, citrusy Brianna. There are white blends like the Donna Mia and Fiore Della Vigna, as well as full-bodied reds such as the Marquette, Frontenac and Vitino. You’ll even find roses and a spiced Christmas wine.

Some of the most frequent diners become members of the Acquaviva Wine Club for an even more intimate experience. Members receive one bottle every month, with discounts on restaurant dining, wine, market items, wine tastings and exclusive tours behind the scenes in Maple Park.

The busy summer and fall wedding season keep Acquaviva’s Maple Park location on a limited dining schedule for much of the year, but in Batavia the kitchen is open and ready to serve six days a week. No matter which location you choose, it’s a good idea to call ahead for reservations.

Acquaviva Winery and Ristorante is open in Batavia Tuesday through Thursday from 3 to 9 p.m., Friday and Saturday from 11 a.m. to 10 p.m. and on Sunday from 11 a.m. to 8 p.m.