Café Le Gris: An Unexpected Surprise in Oviedo Mall

Filet mignon at Cafe Le Gris
Filet mignon at Cafe Le Gris
Café Le Gris at the entrance to Oviedo Mall
Café Le Gris at the entrance to Oviedo Mall

Before Centro Comercial Santa Fe, La Strada, and Rio Sur, there was Oviedo.

My favorite mall in 2009, I’d visited multiple times, but never stopped to consider eating at Café Le Gris, which occupies a prominent location near the main entrance.

After reading positive reviews on TripAdvisor last year, I made it a point to stop in for lunch last August.

The open-air design offers excellent people watching opportunities, as shoppers come and go from the mall. This may be a distraction to some, but I didn’t mind.

From the salad bar
From the salad bar

Cracking open the menu, I found more than a few tempting dishes.

Under pastas, there were two types of lasagna, ricotta and spinach ravioli, and fettuccine marinara in a coconut cream sauce. Oh, and my favorite, pasta al vodka with Italian prosciutto. Prices ranged from 28,500 to 33,000 pesos ($16  to $18.50).

Speaking of prosciutto, I can’t seem to find it in Medellin, and always have to substitute serrano ham when making the dish myself.

The fish and seafood list was even longer, featuring robalo (a type of fish), salmon, prawns, and lobster served a variety of ways. As you’d expect, prices were higher too, ranging from 37,000 to 55,000 pesos ($21 to $31).

Filet mignon with Bernaise sauce, mashed potatoes, and vegetables
Filet mignon with Bearnaise sauce, mashed potatoes, and vegetables

If I was going to give this restaurant a proper review, I needed to go big, and thus I ordered my favorite steak, filet mignon with béarnaise sauce (38,000 pesos, $21).

I don’t eat steak often, especially in Colombia, where it can be as tough as rawhide, but the chefs at Café Le Gris delivered a perfectly cooked, medium rare filet. The béarnaise sauce was well executed too.

While my entree left me full (note, I didn’t even order dessert), it could’ve done with slightly bigger portions of mashed potatoes and veggies for the $21 price tag. It did, however, include a starter salad.

The service was also excellent, which one would expect for an upscale restaurant, even one located at the entrance to a mall.

Overall, I’d recommend Café Le Gris for lunch if you plan to visit Oviedo for another reason, such as shopping, errands, or to catch a movie.

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  1. I had my first meal at Cafe Le Gris 26 years ago during my first visit to Colombia – it was ajiaco. I fell in love with the dish and have perfected my own version over the years. Never the less I still enjoy a visit to Cafe Le Gris for their version which is still great . I must admit that I am amazed that over the years they have kept up the quality of food in service – that does not happen often !

    • Wow, Anita, I had no idea Cafe Le Gris had been around so long. Is Oviedo mall that old, or was the restaurant located somewhere else when you first visited?

      PS – I love ajiaco too, it was the first Colombian dish I tried on my first fully day in Bogota four years ago.

      • Yes- I can hardly believe it myself but Oviedo is 30+ years old ! ( of course it has been expanded and remodeled over the years) Cafe Le Gris was an original restaurant there although it may have been in another location before the mall opened.

  2. Cafe LeGris was one of the first things that opened with Oviedo. I would say one of the oldest restaurants in the City. Originally they open first on centro Comercial Villanueva.
    I think this place is a landmark in the city. The menu upgraded from time to time never disappoints

  3. I took my mother, aunt and sister in law to Cafe le Gris last week. I agree that the food is great; however, the service has declined. I had to beg the waiter to remove the plates from our table, beg for 1 cappuccino and 3 espresso (25 minutes later) they brought 3 tintos. Very frustrating.