Roberto de la Fuente, along with his sister Olivia, is one of the leading figures in Guatemalan cuisine, and they are the creators of Clio’s Restaurant.
Chef Roberto de la Fuente
He initially pursued finance and business studies in the United States, where he worked in corporate companies for several years. Later on, he decided to delve into the culinary arts, studying hospitality and culinary arts, also in the United States, and earned an MBA in Guatemala at the Francisco Marroquín University. After gaining experience in various places, he made the decision to return to Guatemala.
In 2008, together with his sister Olivia, they opened Clio’s Restaurant in Plaza Fontabella, initially following the concept of a French bistro. Over time, they relocated the restaurant and evolved its concept into something more innovative, creative, and locally inspired. Subsequently, La Tiendita de Clio’s emerged, where they began selling artisanal products from local producers that are natural, healthy, and organic. This initiative has had a positive impact on the families of the local producers and has highlighted the value of Guatemalan ingredients. Today, Clio’s has expanded to include a restaurant in Huatulco, Mexico, and also offers catering services.
The name Clio’s is inspired by a Greek goddess – the goddess of “History,” and the philosophy behind it is that there is a story to tell behind each dish.
Clio’s Food Craft originates from the premise that every individual should enjoy our creations uniquely to tell their own story. Food is our form of artistic expression, from the selection of ingredients to culinary techniques and knowledge.
Our primary source of inspiration comes from our own experiences in the world of gastronomy since 2008. We aim to share our own journey and allow our customers to become an integral part of our culinary adventure.
A Culinary Corner Amid Mother’s Day
Mother’s Day in the city is synonymous with bustling restaurants and humorous scenes unfolding everywhere. Restaurants, especially those specializing in grilled meat, are filled to capacity. It seems that mothers have a penchant for red meat, at least according to their children. The amusing part is that, when it comes down to it, mothers in steak restaurants often end up ordering chicken dishes.
In virtually every restaurant, you can see how the diners share remarkable physical traits with the honored matriarchs. Young children and the elderly are a constant presence in these celebrations, creating chaos in the parking lots.
After exploring the lively Zone 10, a sufficiently interesting place for lunch is finally found. Mother’s Day commitments had been fulfilled the day before, allowing for the exploration of places beyond the realm of grilled meat. This leads to Clio’s, a compact establishment with an intriguing story to tell.
Clio, as you may know, is the muse of history and epics, and this place bears her name. The decor transports you to Western Europe in the first half of the 20th century, exuding a touch of opulent elegance, albeit with impeccable taste. While there aren’t specific historical references related to Clio, this becomes secondary to the experience the place offers.
The chosen seating is perfect: a table with a direct view of the kitchen. From there, you can observe the waitstaff picking up dishes, the chef and his team adding the finishing touches to their creations, and occasionally catch discreet moments that usually remain hidden from diners.
The menu, presented in a leather-bound notebook, is in French with explanations in Spanish. It offers a balance between red meat dishes like filet mignon and lamb and fish options. As a courtesy, bread is served in four different styles to choose from, accompanied by exquisite butter with hints of fresh basil.
The initial choices are chicken liver pâté and smoked snapper. While waiting, you can enjoy the ambiance, with lamps reminiscent of the golden years and walls adorned with guata. The constant hustle and bustle of the waitstaff reflects the high expectations of a sophisticated clientele. Amidst this activity, the hostess approaches the kitchen to convey a peculiar request from one of the diners: “Table such-and-such wants to talk to you… they say they have a recommendation for you.” Intrigue fills the room as everyone wonders what this mysterious suggestion, possibly from a young 25-year-old skater, might be.
Finally, the smoked snapper arrives. It is impeccably presented, with three slices of fish, skin still on, crossed by golden filaments of mysterious origin. They rest on a bed of mashed potatoes and tender spinach leaves, framed by extremely thin slices of roasted beet. The predominant flavor is that of a “horseradish vinaigrette,” similar to wasabi, which accompanies the dish. Although this vinaigrette enhances the experience, it occasionally seems to overshadow the aroma of the fish.
The aroma of the snapper is exceptional, and the slices are perfectly cooked. However, the absence of other ingredients that could amplify this aroma allows the wasabi vinaigrette to take the spotlight excessively. Despite this minor detail, the dish is visually appealing and offers a high-quality culinary experience.
The chicken liver pâté, while not reaching the excellence of others, meets expectations. Served with a small portion of elderberry sauce, Dijon mustard, and a subtle touch of pickles, it is an enjoyable and entertaining dish.
For dessert, a gateaux filled with chocolate mousse and hazelnut meringue is chosen. Although the root of the word “gateaux” suggests “cake,” its flavor and presentation are delightful. With different layers of density and texture, this chocolate cake is complemented by raspberries and strawberry slices, offering a perfect ending to the meal. A verbena and Swiss herb tea, served in a French coffee pot, concludes the experience with an exceptional combination of flavors.