It will come as a very pleasant surprise to know that, whilst this restaurant is indeed located in Wonderboom Airport, it bears no resemblance to the huge, impersonal, and often chaotic establishments that the word “airport” brings to mind! Villa San Giovanni is like an oasis in the desert and has been owned and operated by the Maiorana family since 1981. This is quite an achievement when one considers the short life-span or multiple owners of many restaurants today. The spacious interior is certainly appealing with beautifully presented tables and handsome hand-crafted display cabinets showcasing cigars, whiskies, champagnes and glassware. Pride of place is reserved for the magnificently carved and decorated wine cabinet which is a unique feature of the restaurant and was meticulously designed by Christian Maiorana.
The family philosophy at Villa San Giovanni is “if you are going to do it, do it properly” and they have certainly lived up to this as the restaurant is renowned for hosting functions whether it be a wedding, birthday party or corporate affair. With two inter-leading rooms, the versatile interior can incorporate a dance floor and separate bar area depending on your requirements. There is also a piano player to entertain you 3 nights a week with a variety of popular compositions.
Villa San Giovanni is justifiably proud of its wine list, having won a Diners Club 2007 wine award. The impressive selection of local wines lists many award-winning favourites, some of which are available in magnums, along with the odd jeroboam and rheoboan, and an even a Goliath (27 liters!). The main focus of the imported wines is on Italian varieties, French champagnes, and an excellent selection of liqueurs which includes a wide range of Grappas. Whilst great care has gone into producing a first class wine list, even greater care is taken when it comes to serving wines at the correct temperature, which is something that Christian believes is essential, in order to achieve a perfect marriage between wine and food. The Whisky cabinet offers a selection of premium brands and connoisseurs will be pleased to know that Whisky tastings are scheduled to commence on a regular basis.
In addition to a substantial a la carte menu, there is also a specials board that changes weekly according to what’s in season, and often features new dishes that Giovanni has conjured up in the kitchen.
All the pastas are home made (whether you choose the lasagna, ravioli, or gnocchi) and so too is the tomato base used for both the pastas dishes and the pizzas. A herb garden supplies a bouquet of fresh herbs such as basil, rosemary parsley and mint which are used extensively in many of the dishes featured on the menu. Italian gelato and ice creams are also made on the premises, together with the crème patisserie used in all the cakes and pastries.
Starter recommendations are the pan-fried snails with onions, garlic and tomato salsa, and the Springbok Carpaccio. There is an abundant choice of pasta dishes including the Cannelloni (which is available in both beef Bolognese and ricotta & spinach options), and the Spaghetti Carbonara with mushrooms, onions, bacon and egg. Steak lovers will relish both the delicately flavoured Fillet Alla Gorgonzonla, and the Fillet Della Casa with its creamy peppercorn, mushroom and white wine combination.
Travelling North or South from the N1, take Zambesi Drive (R513) offramp. Continue straight ahead on Zambesi Drive then turn right onto Lavender Road and then turn left onto Linveldt Road. Continue until the Wonderboom Airport.
-25° 39' 26.28''
28° 12' 51.7''
Main Terminal Building
Monday to Thursday 07:00 – 21:30
Friday 07:00 – 22:00
Saturday 08:00 – 22:00
Sunday 08:00 – 17:00